“This is truly once in a lifetime,” says the jeweller’s chief gemologist of the 35 sparklers acquired from the now-closed mine in the Kimberley.
Vicky Reynolds wants to take you on a date with a diamond.
Reynolds, Tiffany & Co’s chief gemologist, has had the enviable task of chaperoning the final 35 Argyle diamonds sold around the world, meeting with potential buyers and discussing exactly how these incredibly rare and exceptional gemstones will be used.
It is, she says, “the stuff my dreams are made of. This is truly once in a lifetime.”
Reynolds has worked with New York-based Tiffany & Co since 1987 – almost as long as the Argyle diamond mine, owned by Rio Tinto, operated in Western Australia’s East Kimberley region (it opened in 1983). When the mine closed in 2020 due to finite resources, the final annual tender – ordinarily a highly anticipated and prestigious event on the gemstone calendar – was considered the hottest ticket going.
The Argyle mine produced 90 per cent of the world’s pink diamonds, and each year, only 50 to 60 were ever offered in an invitation-only tender process. So when Rio Tinto rang Reynolds after the tender, to offer Tiffany and Co a further 35 diamonds noted for their vivid pink and purple colour, she jumped at the chance.