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A Tiffany & Co 7.84-carat Kashmir sapphire ring has set a new world auction record
A Tiffany & Co 7.84-carat Kashmir sapphire ring has set a new world auction record
 









Record jewellery auctions prelude to ‘year of colour’

A series of world record-breaking jewellery auction sales have highlighted the current high demand for coloured diamonds and gemstones, which some have predicted will continue in 2016.

The most recent record-breaking price was set by Bonhams on 8 December at its sale in New York.

The jewellery piece in question was a Tiffany & Co ring set with a 7.84-carat Kashmir sapphire and two smaller white diamonds that sold for US$1.3 million (AU$1.9 m). This result set a world record per-carat price for a Kashmir sapphire at US$172,066 (AU$239,255) per carat.

Daniel Struyf, Bonhams senior director of international jewellery
Daniel Struyf, Bonhams senior director of international jewellery

Afterwards, Bonhams senior director of international jewellery, Daniel Struyf, said the sale was a “sign that coloured gemstones are on the rise”.

This echoed earlier comments made by Struyf following another Bonhams sale held in London on 5 December that broke three world auction records.

During the auction, a ring designed by UK ‘society jeweller’ Andrew Grima that featured a 2.97-carat fancy greyish-blue diamond surrounded by sapphires and white diamonds sold for £1.5 million (AU$3.1 m).

This set a world record price per carat (about £499,158 or AU$1.1 m) for a fancy greyish-blue diamond as well as a world record auction price for a Grima design.

At the same auction, a single-stone ring set with a 10.28-carat Madagascan ruby fetched £236,500 (AU$499,522), marking a new record auction price per carat for a Madagascan ruby at about £23,006 (AU$48,575) per carat.

Struyf said Bonhams’ last two sales in Hong Kong and London had demonstrated that the market was strong for coloured gemstones.

Jean Ghika, Bonhams director of jewellery for the UK and Europe
Jean Ghika, Bonhams director of jewellery for the UK and Europe

Jean Ghika, Bonhams director of jewellery for the UK and Europe, also agreed the market had been “led by coloured [gem] stones and coloured diamonds”.

“The prices achieved reflect the buoyancy of the market for coloured gemstones of the highest quality,” she said. “We anticipate 2016 to be very much the year of colour.”

Earlier in the month, Christie’s Hong Kong sale also achieved two world auction prices per carat for a ruby and Afghan emerald, respectively. The Crimson Flame, a 15.04-carat Burmese ruby set with diamonds in a ring, sold for HK$141.8 (AU$25.4 m) – about HK$9.4 million (AU$1.7 m) per carat – while the 10.11-carat Afghan emerald, also set in a ring, sold for HK$17,560,000 (AU$3.1 m) – about HK$1.7 million (AU$311,538) per carat.

Record year

Other coloured diamonds and gemstones that set world record prices in 2015 are listed below:

  • The Blue Moon of Josephine, a 12.03-carat fancy vivid blue diamond, set an auction record price for any “jewel” as well as a new price-per-carat record for any diamond or gemstone when it sold for US$48.5 million (AU$67.4 m);
  • Sweet Josephine, a 16.08-carat fancy pink diamond, set a world record auction price paid for a pink diamond after selling for US$28.5 million (AU$39.6 m);
  • A 15.2-carat pendant from the collection of actor Sir Sean Connery achieved the world’s highest auction price for a fancy orangey pink diamond when it sold for US$4 million (AU$5.6 m);
  • The 50.13-carat Hope Spinel recorded a world record price per carat for a faceted spinel when it sold for £962,500 (AU$2 m).

Locally, coloured gemstones also appeared to perform well in 2015, as demonstrated by the Australian auction record price achieved by an emerald and diamond jewellery suite. The offering contained a total of 64.21 carats of emerald and 55.66 carats of diamond, and sold for AU$366,000.

 

World record breakers

The Andrew Grima-designed, 2.97-carat greyish-blue diamond ring
The Andrew Grima-designed, 2.97-carat greyish-blue diamond ring
The 10.28-carat Madagascan ruby ring
The 10.28-carat Madagascan ruby ring

The Crimson Flame, a 15.04-carat Burmese ruby ring
The Crimson Flame, a 15.04-carat Burmese ruby ring
The 10.11-carat Afghan emerald ring
The 10.11-carat Afghan emerald ring

More reading
Fugitive buys blue diamond for record US$48.5M
Record-breaking gemstones flood auction sector
Hope Spinel emerges after almost a century
Hundreds of rare gemstones to be auctioned
Why aren’t all pink diamonds equal?


















Monday, 25 March, 2019 10:34pm
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