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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Sun-Drop Sells for a Record-Breaking $12.3 Million


The 110.03-carat Sun-Drop Diamond fetched $12.3 million Tuesday at Sotheby’s Sale of Magnificent Jewels in Geneva.The auction house said the price paid for what is considered to be the largest known pear-shaped fancy vivid yellow diamond in the world set a world auction record for yellow diamonds.

The previous record for a yellow diamond was achieved by “The Vivid Yellow,” a 32.77-carat pear‐shaped fancy vivid yellow diamond, VS2, which sold for nearly $6.6 million at Christie’s New York in October. The previous world auction record price per carat for an emerald was achieved by a 10-carat emerald ring, sold for $113,000 per carat, at Christie’s Hong Kong in May 2000.

The Sun-Drop is graded fancy vivid yellow, the highest color grading for a yellow diamond, and has a purity of VVS1. The stone was exhibited earlier this year at London’s Natural History Museum. The rough for the Sun‐Drop was discovered in South Africa in 2010, and was cut and polished by Cora International, a New York diamond manufacturer.

The sale of diamonds, gemstones and jewelry took in nearly $70.2 million with a sell‐through rate of 82 percent by lot. It was one of Sotheby’s highest totals ever for a jewelry auction.

“We are thrilled with the price achieved by this spectacular daffodil yellow diamond; it is one of the most impressive I have had the pleasure of selling,” said David Bennett, chairman of Sotheby’s Jewellery Department in Europe and the Middle East and co‐chairman of Sotheby’s Switzerland. “Today’s strong sell‐through rates are a reflection of the continued strength and resilience of the international jewelry market.”

Other colored diamonds and gemstones that achieved strong results included:

* A 38.88-carat, cushion‐shaped diamond that fetched nearly $7 million. The D color, flawless clarity stone is part of the Type IIa subgroup, which comprise less than 2 percent of all gem diamonds. They are chemically the purest of all diamond crystals and often have extraordinary optical transparency.

* A 4.16-crata fancy vivid blue cut‐cornered rectangular modified brilliant‐cut diamond sold for $4.2 million.

* A 12.01-carat Muzo emerald which sold for $1.4 million, smashing its pre‐sale estimate of $400,000 to 600,000 and setting a per carat record price for emeralds at auction.

Top selling period and signed jewels included:

* A Cartier natural pearl and diamond necklace designed in the 1930s, which sold for $3.3 million, smashing its pre-auction estimate of $765,000 to $1.2 million.

* A 1987 JAR rock crystal and diamond brooch, which sold for $370,874.

* A 1984 JAR morganite and diamond pendent, which sold for $370,874, beating auction estimates.

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