Art-architectural coins continue riding their wave of popularity, with the genre invented by CIT and it’s iconic Tiffany Art range now enjoying so many good entrants it’s hard to pick favourites any more. Some series have spawned some quite amazingly good designs, a perrenial favourite being the Mineral Art Taj Mahal 2oz coin. Spanish producer Moneda Nueva have their own series of coins called Masterpieces in Stone, the two entrants to date being the Malachite Room in St. Petersburg, and the Blue Drawing Room in Buckingham Palace.
The third coin in this annually released series goes back to St Petersburg but heads over to Catherine Palace to what can only be described as the world’s blingiest room, although we’re sure that deep in the depths of Kanye & Kims ‘palace’ there’s something even flashier to behold. This particular room was featured on a coin by the Mint of Poland back in 2012, but it wasn’t a very successful design in our view.
Described at one time as the ‘Eighth Wonder of the World’, the Amber Palace was created in 1701 with the purpose of being installed in the residence of Frederick, the first king of Prussia, but they ended up at Berlin City Palace instead. In 1716, it was gifted to Peter the Great of Russia, who had it installed at Catherine Palace. Covering 55 sq.m (590 sq.ft), and containing over 6 tonnes of amber, the room took a decade to construct. Looted by the Nazi’s in 1941, it was destroyed by Allied bombing in 1945. The current Amber Room is a reconstruction started in 1979 but taking 24 years to finish.
As before, the coin is a heavier than normal 3oz, and has a lower than normal mintage of just 500 pieces. Packaged in a Nimbus-style floating latex frame, these are excellent for showing off both sides of these intricate coins and allowing light to pass through the amber window. Quite a few dealers carry these including a German dealer with close links to Moneda Nueva, Top World Coins who have this up for pre-order at €359, €20 less than the debut price of last years. First Coin Company also have them at $319.90, and other dealers will follow suit. Another fine coin for the genre, it should ship in the next month or so.