BLOG-Geneva auctions highlight healthy appetite for pink and blue diamonds
BY DAVID BROUGH
New records were set for fancy deep blue, fancy light blue and fancy light pink diamonds at the Sotheby’s magnificent and noble jewellery sale in Geneva on November 16.
GENEVA, November 2016 – Pink and blue diamonds were highly sought after at the Geneva magnificent jewellery auctions in mid-November, underscoring a strong appetite by investors for collectable natural colour gemstones due to their rarity and beauty.
A 17.07-carat emerald-cut fancy intense pink diamond became the top lot in the Sotheby’s sale at the Beau-Rivage hotel on November 16, netting US$20.8 million (US$1.22 million per carat).
In another strong result for rare pink diamonds, a 9.1-carat fancy vivid pink diamond at Christie’s Geneva sale at the Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues a day earlier, sold for US$18.2 million (US$2 million per carat), the second highest price for a pink pear-shaped diamond sold at auction.
The highly publicised 8.01-carat “Sky Blue Diamond” achieved its pre-sale estimate in excess of US$17 million at Sotheby’s.
The Sky Blue Diamond, a square-cut fancy vivid blue diamond set in a ring by Cartier, went to an anonymous telephone bidder after a flurry of bids for US$17.1 million (US$2.13 million per carat), within its pre-sale estimate of US$15-20 million.
It achieved an increase of over 30 percent on the US$12.8 million it had fetched for Sotheby’s in 2012.
“Pink and blue were undoubtedly the hottest colours accounting for many of the top prices,” David Bennett, worldwide chairman of Sotheby’s international jewellery division, said after the auction.
Jewellery Outlook Editor David Brough examines the 8.01-carat Sky Blue Diamond at Sotheby’s Geneva on November 16, 2016 New records were set for fancy deep blue, fancy light blue and fancy light pink diamonds.
Sporadic applause rang out from the packed crowd of jewellers, collectors and dealers as various lots achieved outstanding prices after bursts of vigorous bidding.
“Hints of colour are very fashionable right now when it comes to engagement rings,” said Tobias Kormind, managing director of online retailer 77 Diamonds.
“Recent figures from the Fancy Color Research Foundation show that high quality, rare fancy coloured diamonds, especially vivid blues and vivid pinks, even more than yellows, have demonstrated price resilience because their supply is very limited.”
Dealers and experts attending the auctions said the market for rare colour diamonds was holding up well because of their scarcity and beauty.
High end British jeweller Alexander Davis handles the Sky Blue Diamond
High-end diamond trader Oded Mansori of R.D.H. Diamonds said the Sky Blue Diamond had achieved a fair price taking into consideration its precise colour, while Marijan Dundek, author of the celebrated book “Diamonds”, said the auctions had achieved strong results against a backdrop of global economic uncertainty following the U.S. election.
Dealers said bidders for the Sky Blue Diamond could have included those who missed out on previous sales of rare blue diamonds that achieved world record prices.
Like the Sky Blue Diamond, the two blue diamonds which during the past year have set new world record prices at auction are also fancy vivid blue.
In November 2015 at Sotheby’s Geneva, the Blue Moon, a 12.03 carat fancy vivid blue diamond, sold for US$48.4 million and was renamed the Blue Moon of Josephine in honour of the buyer’s 7-year-old daughter.
The diamond still retains the world record for the highest price paid per carat for any diamond at auction, US$4.1million.
In May 2016 at Christie’s Geneva, the Oppenheimer Blue, a 14.62 carat fancy vivid blue diamond, beat the Blue Moon of Josephine to become the most expensive diamond ever sold at auction, fetching US$57.5 million.
“The unprecedented series of blue diamonds we’ve seen over the past 12 months means that there are buyers out there who missed out on the Blue Moon of Josephine and the Oppenheimer Blue, who want to bid aggressively,” Kormind said.
“Diamonds” author Marijan Dundek admires the Sky Blue Diamond
The Sotheby’s auction was the autumn’s top jewellery sale, achieving US$136.4 million.