Sotheby’s will offer two diamonds weighing more than 100 carats at its upcoming jewelry sale, with one expected to fetch in excess of $10 million.
The Juno diamond, a pear-shaped, 101.41-carat, D-color, internally flawless, type IIa stone, will lead the June 16 New York Magnificent Jewels sale, the auction house said last week. Only 11 D-color diamonds over 100 carats have ever been sold at auction, Sotheby’s noted.
That stone will be joined by the Earth Star, a pear-shaped, 111.59-carat, fancy-deep-orange-brown diamond, which has returned to the auction block for the first time in nearly 40 years. The piece, which is the second-largest diamond of its color, cut and size to be offered at an auction, carries a high estimate of $2.5 million.
Designer David Webb has created a custom mounting for the stone, which was fashioned from a 248-carat rough discovered at the Jagersfontein mine in South Africa in 1967. The setting uses azurmalachite to resemble the Earth as seen from the perspective of a star, Sotheby’s explained.
Other notable items include an emerald-cut, 26.06-carat, D-color, VVS1-clarity diamond ring by Kwiat, which is estimated at up to $3 million, and a pair of diamond and sapphire earrings. The set features two pear-shaped, D-flawless diamonds weighing 4.09 and 4.12 carats; two emerald-cut, D-color diamonds weighing 3.19 and 3.17 carats; and two Kashmir sapphires weighing 9.65 and 9.44 carats. It is predicted to realize up to $3 million. Meanwhile, an Indian-inspired emerald and diamond fringe necklace by Cartier made in 1945 has a price tag of $1.5 million to $2.5 million.
Sotheby’s will auction a stone described as “the largest vivid blue diamond ever to appear at auction” on April 27 in Hong Kong.
Sotheby’s estimates that it could bring $48 million.
The 15.1 carat step-cut blue was cut from a rough stone discovered in April 2021. It is “the largest internally flawless step cut vivid blue diamond that the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) has ever graded,” according to a press statement.
“This diamond ranks as one of the best De Beers has ever seen,” said Bruce Cleaver, CEO of De Beers Group. “It is extremely rare and unique, and as the Home of Diamonds, De Beers is pleased to join together with Sotheby’s to bring this diamond to the world.”
Only five blue diamonds over 10 carats have ever come to auction, Sotheby’s notes. Until now, none has exceeded 15 carats.
“Blue diamonds of any kind are rare on the market, but this is the rarest of the rare; nothing of remotely similar calibre has appeared at auction in recent years,” says Patti Wong, chairwoman of Sotheby’s Asia. “Hundreds of millions of years in the making, this extraordinary blue diamond is surely one of nature’s finest creations.”
The diamond comes from the Cullinan mine in South Africa.
The Key 10138, the rare pear-shaped diamond, that was auctioned at Sotheby’s on Friday, has been sold for $12.3 million using cryptocurrency. It was sold to an anonymous private collector.
At the time the auction was announced, the piece became the first time a diamond of such size had been offered for public purchase with cryptocurrency. Now it has now become the highest price achieved for any jewelry or gemstone bought with cryptocurrency.
“We are thrilled to witness a historical moment, when one of the Earth’s oldest and rarest treasures was purchased using humanity’s newest universal currency,” said Wenhao Yu, Deputy Chairman of Sotheby’s Jewellery in Asia, in a statement. “By introducing this innovative payment option to our luxury sale, we open up new possibilities and expand our reach into a whole new clientele, many of whom are from the digitally savvy generation. The result today not only attests to the resilient demand for top quality diamonds, but also reinforces Sotheby’s position as a pioneer in the luxury field.”
The 101.38 carat diamond from which it takes its name is the second largest pear-shaped diamond to appear on the public market and came from the world-leading diamond company Diacore, the auction house says.
The Key 10138 has achieved the highest gradings in both colour (D colour – the highest grade for a white diamond) and clarity (completely flawless, both internally and externally). It also belongs to the rare subgroup comprising less than 2% of all gem diamonds, known as Type IIa. Diamonds in this group are the most chemically pure type of diamond and often have exceptional optical transparency.
Sotheby’s will offer a fancy-vivid-yellow diamond ring at its New York sale next month, estimating the piece could fetch up to $3 million.
The cut-cornered square step-cut, 73.11-carat, VS2-clarity jewel by Mayfair designer Glenn Spiro, called The Sienna Star, is one of the largest fancy-vivid-yellow diamonds to come to auction, Sotheby’s said Wednesday. The piece is one of the top items at the June 9 Magnificent Jewels sale. The auction will feature jewelry for the “Roaring Twenties 2.0” as people return to the social scene following long lockdowns, Sotheby’s noted.
A private collection of six jewels with a combined estimate of more than $13 million are another headline lot at the New York sale. Those include a necklace by Andrew Clunn, set with 28 oval-shaped diamonds totaling over 168 carats, which carries a high estimate of $3 million, and an emerald-cut, 23.59-carat, D-color, internally flawless, type IIa diamond ring with an upper valuation of $2.8 million.
A Colombian emerald and diamond garland necklace by Harry Winston, estimated at up to $2.5 million, and a 13.02-carat Burmese ruby ring, mounted by Carvin French, with a $2 million high valuation, are also part of the collection. Proceeds from the sale of those six items will be donated to charity.
Additionally, Sotheby’s will showcase a Bulgari ring with a 25.29-carat Kashmir sapphire flanked by diamonds, which it expects will bring in up to $3 million. Meanwhile, a modified square brilliant-cut, 3.75-carat, fancy-intense-pink, VVS1-clarity diamond ring, accented by triangle-shaped and round diamonds, is estimated to fetch up to $2.5 million.
The auction house will present jewels from the collection of philanthropist Margaret Jonsson Rogers, the daughter of Texas Instruments founder and Dallas mayor J. Erik Jonsson, as well as property from the estate of Mary Ethel Weinmann, the daughter of Count and Countess André de Limur, it added.
An iconic Cartier bracelet with 63.66 carats of pear-shaped D color, internally flawless diamond set on rock crystal is expected to fetch between HK$40 million and HK$65 million (US$5.16 million and US$8.39 million) at Sotheby’s Hong Kong’s sale of magnificent jewels in April.
Taking nearly 2,000 hours to create, the bangle-bracelet from the collection “L’Odyssée de Cartier —Parcours d’un Style,” pays homage to an Art Deco inspiration featuring sparkling stones and the French maison’s emblematic panther, orchid, and Oriental motifs.
Louis Cartier, the brand’s third-generation jeweler was a pioneer in working with rock crystal, which became popular in the 1920s. Cartier utilized a polishing technique from the Renaissance period to give a soft shine to rock crystal which, when paired with a diamond, creates an intriguing light effect.
The unique piece “combines a phenomenal diamond, mesmerizing design and impeccable craftsmanship, and represents a high jewelry collectible that will shine through time,” Wenhao Yu, deputy chairman of jewelry at Sotheby’s Asia, said in a statement.
Also on offer is “Circle of Happiness,” a bangle made of 277.7 carats of green jadeite-jade from Myanmar. Sotheby’s did not disclose the estimate of this bracelet.
Sotheby’s sale of magnificent jewels will also feature pieces from the houses of Boucheron, Bulgari, Chanel, Chopard, Graff, Harry Winston, Hermès, Van Cleef & Arpels, and more.
“The appetite for high-quality jewels has never been stronger in Asia, with discerning collectors looking for rare diamonds and gemstones, as well as unique and iconic designs,” Yu said.
A Cartier emerald and diamond ring blew past five fancy colored diamonds to become the top lot at Sotheby’s New York Magnificent Jewels auction held Wednesday. It fetched $3.6 million, more than three-and-a-half times its high estimate.
The ring features a 21.86-carat Colombian square-emerald-cut emerald flanked by diamonds and mounted on 18k yellow gold. The emerald is described in the grading report as having “minor clarity enhancement” and a “richly saturated medium deep slightly bluish green, slightly included with a few surface reaching inclusions, and the girdle bearing a chip and a few nicks, noticeable under 10x magnification.”
The ring was from the collection of Cecile Zilkha, best known for her lifelong interest in the arts, particularly The Metropolitan Opera.
Private collections featuring a variety of signed jewels were an important part of this sale, with many items from these collections far exceeding estimates. All 29 jewels from the Cecile Zilkha collection sold, fetching a total of $11.7 million, nearly double the estimate for the collection. Eleven jewels from the collection of Marylou Whitney, the philanthropist, thoroughbred breeder, arts patron and society hostess, all sold fetching a total of $1.7 million.
The sale overall was quite successful, taking in a total of $46.9 million, the highest total for a Sotheby’s jewelry auction since 2017. In addition, 91% of the lots sold, with 74% of the lots fetching prices above their high estimates and nine pieces surpassing $1 million.
Fancy colored diamonds, including three heart-shaped gems, made up the top five lots prior to the sale. However two of the gems failed to meet the reserve price. The first was the anticipated top lot of the sale, a pink gold and platinum ring set with a 5.03-carat cut-cornered rectangular mixed-cut fancy vivid pink diamond, accented with two cut-cornered triangular step-cut fancy intense blue diamonds. Its estimate was $9 million – $12 million.
The second was a ring centered with a 2.28-carat fancy vivid blue heart-shaped diamond, encircled by round yellow and framed by white diamonds with an estimate of $2.25 million – $3.25 million.
The three remaining fancy colored diamond lots sold within estimates and were the next three top lots of the sale. They are:
* A 1.71-carat heart-shaped fancy red diamond with SI2 clarity surrounded by white diamonds and mounted on an 18k white and pink gold pendant for a necklace. It fetched more than $3.1 million.
* A 3.67-carat fancy intense blue diamond in a cut-cornered rectangular modified brilliant-cut diamond. The stone is flanked by two emerald-cut diamonds and mounted on an 18k white gold ring. It fetched more than $2.6 million.
* An 18k white and pink gold ring centered with a 2-carat fancy vivid orange diamond framed and accented by round diamonds that fetched nearly $1.9 million.
As mentioned, private collections were an important part of this sale. In addition to the Cartier emerald ring, the Cecile Zilkha collection comprised of 28 other signed and historic jewels. Among the standouts:
* Emerald and diamond earclips by Bulgari that fetched more than $1.1 million, double its high estimate;
* A 1930s diamond rivière by Bulgari that fetched $806,500, well above its high estimate;
* A silver-topped gold, sapphire and diamond brooch that fetched $625,000, more than double its high estimate;
* Earclips by Harry Winston featuring two cut-cornered square modified brilliant-cut Fancy Intense yellow diamonds weighing 15.24 and 14.22 carats that fetched $528,200, within estimates; and
* A ruby and diamond bracelet by Harry Winston that fetched $441,000, well above the high estimate.
The sale ended with 11 jewels from the collection of Marylou Whitney. The top lot in this collection was a Cartier necklace composed of 32 rare natural pearls with a diamond clasp. It fetched more than $1.6 million, more than three times its high estimate.
In addition, two David Webb pieces from the Whitney collection performed extremely well. The first was a platinum bracelet set with 10 emerald-cut diamonds weighing 21.16 carats. It fetched $352,800, above estimates. The second was a showstopper Mughal-inspired necklace that boldly displays a 181.95-carat translucent carved emerald and 10 cabochon emeralds that weigh a total of 126.30 carats, along with rubies and diamonds. The necklace sold for $327,600, more than triple its high estimate.
While Cartier, Bulgari and Harry Winston dominated the headline sales, jewels from Van Cleef & Arpels may have had the biggest impact overall. Twenty-eight jewels by the Parisian luxury brand were sold at the auction. The top lot from Van Cleef & Arpels was a mystery-set sapphire and diamond brooch designed as a flower from a New York collector that sold for more than $1.1 million, nine times its high estimate. That was certainly a headline sale.
An indication that private collections and signed jewels were going to dominate came at the very beginning of the sale. The first 10 lots from a private family collection were by Van Cleef & Arpels. They all sold well above their estimates.
Other auction highlights included:
* A jadeite, natural pearl and diamond necklace by Raymond Yard, circa 1935, sold for $1.6 million after competition from three phone bidders, more than four times its high estimate. The piece was offered from the estate of Mary Lily Kenan Flagler.
* A Cartier sapphire and diamond bracelet in a fan design, circa 1960s, that fetched just over $1 million, just topping its high estimate.
* A ring set with a 1.08-carat pear-shaped fancy vivid blue diamond accented by round diamonds sold for $927,500, above estimates. The piece was offered by a Texan collector.
Sotheby’s will sell a 118.88-carat, royal-blue, unheated Burmese sapphire in Hong Kong next week, the largest of its kind the auction house has offered in 20 years.
The cushion-shaped stone, surrounded by pear-shaped diamonds weighing a total of 16.06 carats, will lead the October 7 Magnificent Jewels sale, Sotheby’s said Monday.
A pear-shaped, 4.84-carat, fancy-vivid-blue, internally flawless diamond ring is also set to go under the hammer. The piece, which also features two brilliant-cut diamonds, each weighing 1.10 carats, has a high estimate of $8.5 million.
Also up for auction are a pair of pendant earrings featuring brilliant-cut, fancy-intense-blue diamonds weighing 1.95 and 1.63 carats. Those stones suspend two pear-shaped, D-color, internally flawless, type IIa diamonds weighing 5.95 and 5.24-carats. The set has a presale value of up to $4.6 million.
In addition, Sotheby’s will feature a cushion-shaped, 6.41-carat, pigeon’s blood Burmese ruby ring surrounded by French-cut white diamonds. The jewel, which was designed and mounted by Hong Kong-based jeweler Forms, carries an upper estimate of $2.9 million. Meanwhile, a ring containing a cut-cornered rectangular modified brilliant-cut, 18.68-carat, fancy-light-purplish-pink diamond is set to fetch up to $2.2 million at the Hong Kong sale.
“The jewelry market has proven to be highly resilient, with our clients in Asia eyeing the best quality jewels on offer,” said Wenhao Yu, Sotheby’s deputy chairman of jewelry for Asia.
Sotheby’s will showcase the pieces in Hong Kong from October 3 to 6 prior to the sale.
Sotheby’s is set to auction off a 102 carat diamond that could become the most expensive jewel ever sold to an online bidder.
The stone, a 102.39 carat D Colour Flawless Oval Diamond, could fetch $10 million to $30 million. Only seven flawless white diamonds of more than 100 carats have ever been sold at auction. It is the second-largest oval diamond of its kind ever sold at auction.
“One hundred-carat diamonds as a rule are exceedingly rare,” said Quig Bruning, head of Sotheby’s jewelry department in New York. “One hundred-carat D flawless are even more rare.”
While Sotheby’s doesn’t have an official estimate, comparable diamonds have sold for between $11 million and $30 million in the past, Bruning said.
The stone, described by Sotheby’s as “the size of a lollipop,” will be sold at a live auction in Hong Kong on Oct. 5, but it will also be open to online bidders starting on Tuesday. If it’s purchased by an online bidder, it would likely top the record for the most expensive piece of jewelry ever sold online a pair of fancy blue and pink diamond earrings that sold for $6 million online in 2016.
The 102 carat stone was cut from a 271 carat rough diamond that was discovered in the Victor Mine in Ontario in 2018. The diamond was cut and polished over the course of a year by Diacore to bring out its “best brilliance, fire and scintillation,” according to Sotheby’s. The stone belongs to an elite subgroup of diamonds known as “Type IIa,” which are the most chemically pure type of diamond with the highest level of transparency.
Demand for the rarest, largest diamonds has strengthened during the coronavirus pandemic, as the wealthy have benefited from stronger stock markets and investors look for long-term stores of value in a financial world awash with cash.
While demand for everyday jewelry sold in stores has plunged since people aren’t visiting malls and shops as often, or wearing jewelry as often prices for so-called investible diamonds have remained strong. Wealthy buyers, especially in Asia and the Middle East, covet diamonds as the ultimate hard-asset, since they are durable and portable.
Sales of jewelry and diamonds online have also increased, as people buy more from home. Sotheby’s said its online jewelry sales have totaled $31 million this year, seven times more than the same period last year. It has sold three lots for more than $1 million online.
“The retail experience going into the store, trying things on that’s gone right now, or at the very least has changed substantially,” Bruning said. “A lot of things have moved online, and we have been able to really capitalize on that by showcasing things in a new and compelling kind of way globally.”
When asked whether the buyer of a 100 carat diamond would ever wear it, he said: “Absolutely. They want to enjoy them.”
Sotheby’s brought in a total of $40.2 million at its Hong Kong auction Wednesday as a 5 carat blue diamond fetched $13.8 million.
The price of the step cut, fancy vivid blue, named the Ai diamond, after the Chinese word for love, fell within its estimate of $12.5 million to $15.3 million. The final selling price translated to $2.8 million per carat.
Another blue diamond a pear shaped, fancy intense blue weighing 3.47 carats sold for $3.1 million at the Magnificent Jewels and Jadeite auction against a pre-sale estimate of $2.7 million to $3.6 million. A step cut, 18.45 carat, D color, VVS2 clarity diamond ring fetched $2.3 million, smashing its estimate of $1.3 million to $1.7 million.
However, only one piece out of a collection of jewels by designer Wallace Chan found a buyer: a pair of jade and diamond earrings, estimated at $70,160 to $108,430, which went for $87,700.
Several jewels by Harry Winston, Van Cleef & Arpels and Cartier also sold at the auction.