Sun Drop Diamond
November 16, 2011 by staff
The diamond, the world’s largest pear-shaped fancy vivid yellow, weighing 110.03 carats, was the top lot at Sotheby’s semi-annual jewellery sale in Geneva which netted a total of $70.17 million.
“I don’t really see any crisis here at all. We sold nearly every one of the big diamonds within our expectations,” David Bennett, chairman of Sotheby’s jewellery department in Europe and the Middle East, told reporters after conducting the sale.
“It proves the resilience of the diamond market in a time of uncertainty,” he said.
The second priciest lot was a cushion-shaped white diamond weighing 38.88 carats which sold for 6.34 million Swiss francs or $6.96 million, including the premium paid by the buyer, according to Sotheby’s.
But several major jewels were stranded on the block, with just 81.8% of some 500 lots on offer finding new owners. Rival Christie’s holds its sale in Geneva on Wednesday night.
Among unsold lots were a fancy intense blue pear-shaped diamond ring that Sotheby’s had expected to fetch up to $10 million and a suite of imperial diamond jewels from the mid-19th century which the auction house said may have been from the jewel box of Catherine I, wife of Peter the Great of Russia.
“There are very often casualties in every sale. We got very very close tonight with the imperial suite, it is a totally unique and unprecedented suite of jewels. Unfortunately we didn’t get the extra bid to have it sold,” Bennett said.
“But it remains the most sumptuous suite of jewels I have ever seen from that period,” the British expert added.
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