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Article from DIAMOND JEWELLERY (744 Articles), GEMSET JEWELLERY (286 Articles), GEMSTONES - LOOSE (254 Articles)












Clockwise from top left: the Hope Spinel; Christie's 16.08-carat pink diamond; the ring and earrings from Leonard Joel's record-breaking emerald and diamond suite; Leonard Joel's Tiffany ring; Sotheby's 12.03-carat Blue Moon
Clockwise from top left: the Hope Spinel; Christie's 16.08-carat pink diamond; the ring and earrings from Leonard Joel's record-breaking emerald and diamond suite; Leonard Joel's Tiffany ring; Sotheby's 12.03-carat Blue Moon

Record-breaking gemstones flood auction sector

The jewellery auction market appears to be buzzing with news that a renowned spinel has sold for about five times more than expected, while a record-breaking sale has taken place in Australia.

The 50.13-carat Hope Spinel, which belonged to the same collection as the famous Hope Diamond, was expected to fetch between £150,000 (AU$324,806) and £200,000 (AU$433,096) when auctioned at Bonhams’ Fine Jewelry sale in London on 24 September.

Jean Ghika, Bonhams director of jewellery for the UK and Europe
Jean Ghika, Bonhams director of jewellery for the UK and Europe
However, the rose-hued gemstone – set in a 19th century silver and gold brooch and surrounded by brilliant cut diamonds weighing approximately 6.5 carats – sold to a private telephone bidder for £962,500 (AU$2.1 million), a world record price of US$30,000 (AU$42,728) per carat.

The previous record price per carat for a faceted spinel, set in 2013, was US$16,000 (AU$22,789).

As previously reported by Jeweller, the piece was once part of a private collection of more than 700 gemstones formed by London banker Henry Philip Hope and had not been offered for sale since 1917, when it was sold for £1,060 – the equivalent of £80,000 (AU$173,227) today.

Jean Ghika, Bonhams’ director of jewellery for the UK and Europe, said the auction house was pleased with the price achieved.

“It was an exceptional gemstone with a priceless provenance and these pieces just don’t come to the open market often and when they do, they are hotly contested,” she commented.

Record-breakers make debut

The news came as other auction houses announced that a number of world record-breaking diamonds would go under the hammer.

The largest cushion-shaped fancy vivid pink diamond to be offered at auction will feature as part of Christie’s Magnificent Jewels sale in Geneva on 10 November.

The 16.08-carat stone, which classifies as a type IIa diamond, is set in a platinum ring and surrounded by two rows of pavé-set white diamonds.

It is estimated to sell anywhere from US$23 million (AU$32.8 m) to US$28 million (AU$39.9 m).

Meanwhile, Sotheby’s will offer the 12.03-carat Blue Moon – said to be the largest cushion-shaped fancy vivid blue diamond ever to appear at auction – at its Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels sale in Geneva on 11 November.

The loose, internally flawless stone has an estimated value of between US$35 million (AU$49.9 m) and US$55 million (AU$78.4 m).

Record prices Down Under

John D
John D'Agata, Leonard Joel national head of jewellery
Closer to home, Melbourne-based auction house Leonard Joel has broken two Australian records.

The Fine Jewels and Timepieces sale, held in Melbourne on 14 September, achieved the highest Australian price paid for a heart-shaped diamond ring with the sale of a Tiffany & Co solitaire platinum ring for AU$229,360. The piece featured a 5.73-carat white diamond.

In addition, the auction house set a new Australian auction record price for an emerald and diamond jewellery suite, which sold for AU$366,000. The suite comprised a necklace, earrings and ring containing a total of 64.21 carats of emerald and 55.66 carats of diamond set in 18-carat white and yellow gold.

Leonard Joel national head of jewellery John D’Agata said the auction, which, in total, achieved AU$1.5 million was the latest successful sale in a “very positive” 12 months.

“The current jewellery auction market in Australia is performing well,” he commented. “Unlike other auction houses that may focus more on art, Leonard Joel’s strongest department is jewellery, and [our] last two jewellery-only quarterly auctions realised more than AU$1 million, compared to our usual, already high results of AU$600,000 to AU$700,000.”

D’Agata said he believed consumers were turning to jewellery as an area for investment because of the uncertainty currently surrounding housing, the stock market and the Australian dollar.

“Better jewellery product is also starting to appear in the Australian market, such as the emerald and diamond suite, which is something you might expect to see in Geneva or Hong Kong,” he added.

More reading
Hope Spinel emerges after almost a century
Hundreds of rare gemstones to be auctioned
Coloured diamonds prove to be headline acts
$20M for 392-carat cushion-shaped sapphire
World’s 9 largest gemstones up for sale




















Monday, 29 May, 2017 12:10pm
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