Colored Stones / Diamonds / Industry

Williamson Pink Star Could Snag More Than $21 Million In October Auction


Barbiecore lovers: Get your auction paddles ready. One of the purest, pinkest diamonds known to exist is on the block.

At 11.15 carats, the Williamson Pink Star will soon go on a whirlwind tour to highlight its charms before going up for sale. Sotheby’s London, which announced the Williamson Pink Star’s existence on Aug. 31, says the diamond’s “perfection and purity” gives it an auction estimate of $21 million. That could set a new per-carat price record for a fancy vivid pink diamond, the company said.

The Williamson Pink Star—named for the Williamson mine, famous for producing bubblegum-pink diamonds—will start its travels in London and make stops in the United Arab Emirates, Singapore, Taiwan, and Hong Kong, where Sotheby’s said it will offer this blushing piece of excellence in a live, single-lot auction scheduled for Oct. 5.

Williamson Pink Star
Yep, she’s fancy: At 11.15 carats, Sotheby’s said the Williamson Pink Star is one of the world’s purest, most saturated pink diamonds.

Sotheby’s said the Williamson Pink Star is the second-largest internally flawless fancy vivid pink diamond to ever appear at auction. Its only rival is the CFT Pink Star, a 59.6-carat oval, mixed-cut diamond, which Sotheby’s sold for $71.2 million in April 2017.

In its Gemological Institute of America (GIA) monograph, the Williamson Pink Star is described as “the rarest of all gemstones” because of its color.

“It is unusual for pink diamonds to occur with a strong depth of color or saturation in any size. In addition to its exceptional color, the clarity is internally flawless—a special combination. Examples such as this are some of the rarest gems ever discovered,” the monograph reads.

“With its unique color, considerable size, and dazzling brilliant cut, the Williamson Pink Star is both a work of nature and a work of art, establishing its place among the most fascinating colored diamonds,” the GIA said.

Even Audrey Hepburn would be impressed with how much this diamond thinks pink: Sotheby’s notes that pink stands out as well because less than 3% of all diamonds submitted to the GIA are classified as colored diamonds, and less than 5% of those are considered “predominately pink.”

Williamson Pink Star ring
According to Sotheby’s, this is what the Williamson Pink Star would look like in a ring if it were flanked by trapeze- and brilliant-cut diamonds and mounted in 18k gold.

Its size also matters. On its web page devoted to the Williamson Pink Star, Sotheby’s notes: “In 2018, the GIA selected a sample of 1,000 pink diamonds from their database of coloured diamonds graded between 2008 and 2016 and found that 83% weighed less than 1 carat.”

Diacore cut and polished the Williamson Pink Star from a rough stone of 32 carats to its final diamond form, Sotheby’s said, “bringing out the diamond’s innermost beauty to full display.” Diacore also cut and polished the CTF Pink Star into its final form.

The Williamson Pink Star is named after its sibling, the CTF Pink Star, and  the Williamson stone, a brilliant-cut 23.6-carat diamond that Canadian geologist and royalist Dr. John Thorburn Williamson gave to Queen Elizabeth II on the occasion of her wedding in 1947.

As you might expect, Dr. Williamson owned the Williamson mine in Mwadui, Tanzania, where the Williamson stone as well as the Williamson Pink Star were discovered. The Williamson stone is said to be one of the queen’s favorites, which Cartier set into a brooch for the monarch.

In Sotheby’s statement, chairman of jewellery and watches at Sotheby’s Asia Wenhao Yu said, “The discovery of a gem-quality pink diamond of any size is an extremely rare occurrence—something that, with the recent closure of the Argyle mine, seemed, until recently, highly improbable.

“Driven by a limited supply and rising demand, prices for top-quality large pink diamonds over 5 carats have increased exponentially over the past decade, serendipitously setting the scene for the appearance now of this one-of-a-kind stone,” Yu said.

Top: Start saving now, because Oct. 5 is quickly approaching—and that is when the Williamson Pink Star, the second-largest, internally flawless, fancy vivid pink diamond to ever appear at auction, goes up for sale (photos courtesy of Sotheby’s London).

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Karen Dybis

By: Karen Dybis

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