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Tuesday, December 1, 2015

15-Carat Burmese Ruby Sets World Auction Record

Photo credit: CHRISTIE’S IMAGES LTD. 2015

“The Crimson Flame,” an exceptionally rare Burmese ruby, set a world auction record per carat of $1.2 million at Christie’s Hong Kong sale of Magnificent Jewels Tuesday.

The 15-carat “pigeon’s blood” colored gem sold for sold for $18.3 million, surpassing its high estimate of $15 million. The auction house said it is “undoubtedly the most important pigeon’s blood ruby to come to auction in Asia.” 

“It’s the year of the ruby at Christie’s Hong Kong,” declared Vickie Sek, deputy chairman Asia & Director of Christie’s Asia Jewellery department.

To underscore this, a suite of ruby jewels called The “Mogok’s Fiery Red” by famed Burmese ruby jewelry house, Fai Dee, took in commanding prices. The jewels offered as two individual lots and sold as follows:

Photo credit: CHRISTIE’S IMAGES LTD. 2015

* A necklace of 32 cushion-shaped pigeon’s blood Burmese rubies (pictured above), weighing approximately 5.05 to 1.04 carats, alternating with cushion-shaped diamonds, mounted in platinum and gold took in $7.2 million, within its estimate. 

* Pigeon’s blood Burmese ruby and diamond earrings sold for $3.1 million, within its estimate. 

In addition, the “Afghan Emerald,” a 10.11-carat flawless gem fetched $2.2 million, establishing a world record price for an Afghan emerald at auction. It surpassed its $1.5 million high estimate.

The auction of 320 lots at the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre included diamonds, colored diamonds, colored gemstones, jadeite and signed pieces that took in $96.9 million with 80 percent of items sold by lot and 83 percent by value, Christie’s said. The sale attracted 160 buyers from 16 countries across three continents.

Other items of note include:

Photo credit: CHRISTIE’S IMAGES LTD. 2015

* A 7.53-carat Fancy Intense Pink diamond ring (pictured above) sold for $6.25 million, within its estimate; and 

Photo credit: CHRISTIE’S IMAGES LTD. 2015

* A two-strand jadeite bead necklace with a diamond clasp by Cartier (pictured above) sold for $7.5 million, well above its 4.8 million high estimate. 

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