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Blue Diamond Sold for Record Per-Carat Price

By JCK Staff
Posted on May 16, 2008
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Sotheby’s sale of Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels in Geneva Thursday raised $57.14 million, the second highest total the auction house achieved for a sale held worldwide.

“We are absolutely delighted with the results of today’s sale, which has performed supremely well across the board,” said David Bennett, chairman, Europe and the Middle East, Sotheby’s International Jewellery department. We’ve had great success with important stones, with period pieces, and particularly with jewels of noble provenance.”

A 3.73-ct. fancy vivid blue diamond was sold for $4.95 million, or 1.3 million per carat—a world record per-carat price—well above its pre-sale estimate of $2.6 million to $3.3 million.

In fact, a total of 66 percent of lots were sold above their high estimate—”an impressive figure,” Bennett said. Other gems and jewelry that received top bids included:

* A 5.06-ct. fancy vivid purplish pink diamond, oval-cut, ring sold for $2.5 million.

* A 6.26-ct. fancy light pink diamond ring, claw-set with a fancy light pink cut-cornered rectangular-cut diamond sold for $1.6 million.

Period pieces were also extremely sought-after, including:

* A late 1920s diamond sautoir by Van Cleef & Arpels, designed as a series of geometric and round links set with diamonds and suspending a diamond tassel pendant sold for $985,684, well above its pre-sale estimate of $143,237 to $238,654.

* The cover lot of the sale, a fine emerald and diamond bracelet of graduated emerald beads alternating with lines of brilliant-cut and baguette diamonds sold for $772,275, more than eight times its pre-sale low estimate.

The Noble Jewels sale, a theme which was inaugurated by Sotheby’s last year, included a pearl and diamond brooch from the mid 19th century. The old mine ‘Golconda’ diamond weighing 7.86 cts., suspending a natural pearl drop sold for $857,639, more than doubling its pre-sale low estimate.

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