The Fortune Pink diamond, an exceptionally rare giant gemstone, sold for US$28.6 million at auction in Geneva, Switzerland, on Tuesday to a private Asian bidder.
At 18.18 carats, the jewel is the largest pear-shaped “fancy vivid pink” diamond ever sold under the hammer, Christie’s auction house said.
The dazzling diamond fetched a hammer price of 24.5 million Swiss francs (US$24,8 million), rising to US$28,6 with the buyer’s premium added on.
The bidding, which lasted for a tense four minutes, started at SF17 million and was a three-way battle between telephone bidders, with the winner eventually claiming the gem by upping the bid by SF500,000.
“The buyer is happy. It’s a dream come true,” the Christie’s employee taking the winning telephone bid told reporters, but maintaining the buyer’s anonymity.
The Fortune Pink, mined in Brazil, had been estimated to fetch US$25 million to US$35 million.
Photo: AFP / SOTHEBY’S
Christie’s said that its carat weight is considered a lucky number in Asia, where it signifies “definite prosperity,” and gave the diamond its name.
“Very aptly it was purchased by an Asian private customer,” Christie’s international jewelry head Rahul Kadakia told reporters after conducting the sale. “It’s a very select group of customers who are buying at this level.”
“I’m very happy that it’s gone to a new family who will enjoy it, who will wear it, and I hope it brings them good fortune,” he said.
Pink diamonds are only found in a few places, and fewer than 10 percent weigh more than 0.2 carats.
Big jewels such as the Fortune Pink are therefore among the rarest diamonds and are some of the most in-demand on the global market.
On Friday, the 11.15 carat Williamson Pink Star pink diamond sold in Hong Kong for HK$453.2 million (US$57.7 million), setting a record for price per carat paid at auction for any diamond or gemstone, Sotheby’s said.
It was the second-highest price paid at auction for any jewel.
Tobias Kormind, managing director of online diamond jeweler 77 Diamonds, said the Fortune Pink price was disappointing in comparison.
“Hong Kong has trumped Geneva, and whether we like it or not, the center of gravity of wealth creation is moving towards Asia,” Kormind said.
The world record for a pink diamond was set in 2017, when a stone known as the CTF Pink Star was sold in Hong Kong for US$71.2 million.
The Fortune Pink was auctioned in the Magnificent Jewels sale at the Hotel des Bergues, part of Christie’s Luxury Week of sales in Geneva.
The jewels sale of 71 lots fetched nearly SF56.6 million. Five other diamond lots went for more than SF1 million.
Sotheby’s Geneva Luxury Week is also under way, with a fancy vivid blue cushion-shaped diamond weighing 5.53 carats estimated to fetch SF11 million to SF15 million.
It is part of the De Beers Exceptional Blue Collection — a group of eight rare fancy blue diamonds with a total value of more than US$70 million being sold in Geneva, New York and Hong Kong.
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