AUCTION – Sotheby’s New York to offer the extraordinary Estrela de FURA 55.22 ruby on June 8

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Weighing a sizeable 55.22 carats, this exceptionally important and rare Mozambique gem is the largest gem-quality ruby to ever appear at auction. Its estimate is in excess of $30 million.

When FURA Gems announced its historic uncovering of the world’s largest gem-quality ruby ever discovered in September 2022, the news dominated headlines the world over, prompting tremendous excitement and taking the gemstone market by storm.

Unearthed from FURA’s ruby mine in Montepeuz, Mozambique in July 2022, the gemstone – weighing an astonishing 101 carats – was subsequently named Estrela de FURA (Star of FURA in Portuguese), in a nod to its outstanding depth of color and size, and to shine a spotlight on Mozambique as a rich source of premium quality rubies.

Even in its rough, untouched state, Estrela de FURA was considered by experts as an exceptional treasure of nature for its fluorescence, outstanding clarity and vivid red hue, known as ‘pigeon’s blood’ – a color traditionally associated only with Burmese rubies.

AUCTION – Sotheby’s New York to offer the extraordinary Estrela de FURA 55.22 ruby on June 8

Now seven months after its initial debut, as the hammer fell on the final lot of The Exceptional Luxury Evening Auction in Hong Kong, speculation on the ruby’s whereabouts were finally put to rest when Sotheby’s auctioneer, Uni Kim, officially unveiled Estrela de FURA 55.22 to the world. 

Weighing a sizeable 55.22 carats, this exceptionally important and rare Mozambique gem is the largest gem-quality ruby to ever appear at auction. 

Its combination of rich saturation of color, untouched by heat treatment, highly crystalline appearance and incomparable size that – with an estimate in excess of $30 million – places Estrela de FURA 55.22 as the most valuable and important ruby ever to come to market.

AUCTION – Sotheby’s New York to offer the extraordinary Estrela de FURA 55.22 ruby on June 8

Picture courtesy of Sotheby’s

Following an initial series of studies of the 101 carat rough crystal to determine cutting options in the beginning of year, Estrela de FURA was masterfully cut and faceted by a team of artisans – with the rough transformed into a beautiful cushion-shaped stone, which according to a report from the Swiss Gemmological Institute (SSEF), “resulted in vivid red hues due to multiple internal reflections.”

The report states further that “a natural ruby from Mozambique of this size and quality can be considered very rare and thus an exceptional treasure of nature.”

The aforenamed gem is profoundly rich in chromium which, when exposed to ultraviolet light – as found in sunlight – causes the stone to radiate a fiery red fluorescence, further enhancing the stone’s vibrancy, as though lit from within. 

AUCTION – Sotheby’s New York to offer the extraordinary Estrela de FURA 55.22 ruby on June 8

Picture courtesy of Sotheby’s

The ruby has become one of the most sought-after colored gemstones at a time when color dominates the world of jewels and rarity drives the market. Rubies of this importance and magnitude are exceedingly rare, with only two examples having ever broken the $15 million barrier at auction, making the appearance of the present gem a landmark event in itself.

Estrela de FURA 55.22 is poised to make history as it sets to surpass The Sunrise Ruby, a 25.59 carat ruby of Burmese origin, which sold for $30.3 million ($1,185,451 per carat) at Sotheby’s Geneva in 2015, and still holds the world auction record for a ruby.*

AUCTION – Sotheby’s New York to offer the extraordinary Estrela de FURA 55.22 ruby on June 8

Picture courtesy of Sotheby’s

The stone’s new journey commences today at Sotheby’s Hong Kong, where it will then embark on a worldwide tour, with exhibitions scheduled in Taipei, China, Singapore, Geneva and Dubai (full dates will be released in due course) before it stars in Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels auction in New York on 8 June, 2023.

AUCTION – Sotheby’s New York to offer the extraordinary Estrela de FURA 55.22 ruby on June 8

Picture courtesy of Sotheby’s