World Record Price for Any Gemstone!

May 22nd, 2009 by James L. Sweaney, CGA, FGA. GG

cullinan-2May 12–Sotheby’s achieved a hammer price of $10,498,000 swiss francs (~ 9.5 million US) for the fabulous 7.03 ct Fancy Vivid Blue Internally Flawless Cullinan Blue Diamond. Sotheby’s original presale estimate was 5.8 to 8.5 million US.

“This is already a new world record price for a fancy vivid blue diamond and a new world record per carat for any gemstone (at auction),” chief auctioneer David Bennett told reporters.”It is fantastic in this market and shows that these rare things are very much in demand,” he said.

The final price includes a commission paid by the buyer to the auction house. The stone sets a record price per carat for any gemstone sold at auction of $1,349,752, Sotheby’s said.

The jewelry sold at this auction was touted as “one of the most important jewellery collections to have been assembled in the 20th century”, and hammered in a total of over $39 million dollars. The Blue was the centerpiece that generated the most excitement. The new owner paid just under $1.4 million dollars per carat for this beautiful and rare diamond.  We predicted a record price on our blog posted April 18, Ultra Rare Blue Diamond.

According to Petra, miners of the gem, its buyer—who initially remained anonymous—is Joseph Lau Luen-Hung, a Hong Kong collector.  Competing with a second remote caller, Mr. Lau Luen-Hung paid the highest price ever to own one of the rarest gems ever.  He exercised his right to name the stone, now known as “Star of Josephine”. Should he ever choose to sell the Star, I predict he will make money.

This is good news for gem aficionados at all levels. The competition and extreme value show how much esteem collectors have for these rarest of rare assets. As ongoing gem prospecting continues world wide and exciting gem finds deliver new and exotic gem materials, competing with existing stocks in the market place, the opportunities to own fabulous collectible gems abound. All you need are the will and the dollars to spend and the knowledge and connections to buy!

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