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Monday, August 26, 2013

10.6-Carat Fancy Blue Diamond Has an Asking Price of $9.8 Million

The "Royal Blue" diamond

A 10.6-carat fancy blue diamond known as the “Royal Blue” is available through M.S. Rau Antiques in New Orleans. The asking price is $9.8 million.

Blue diamonds are among the rarest in the world so it seems unusual that this cut-corned, modified brilliant cut gem is the second significant blue diamond to appear on sale in August. A week earlier, Sotheby’s Hong Kong announced that it is offering a 7.59-carat round fancy vivid blue diamond that is estimated to fetch $19 million.

This stone has a VVS1 clarity grade, notable for having “very, very slight” inclusions, according to the report from the Gemological Institute of America. It is one step away from being graded as “internally flawless” under the GIA scale. The chemical that creates the blue in diamonds is boron, which this gem has.

The diamond is set on a platinum and rose gold ring surrounded by vivid pink and colorless diamonds.

Fewer than 0.3 percent of all colored diamonds graded by GIA were predominately blue. Gem expert and dealer Robert Procop, also the co-designer of Style of Jolie jewels with Angelina Jolie, knows as much as anyone when it comes to the rarity and historical significance of these gems.

“Blue diamonds are rarely discovered and only a few have been found over centuries of mining, making it one of the rarest gems of the world,” he said. “(They) have also been the most gifted by royalty and historical figures making them the most mysterious and precious of jewels. I rarely see a blue diamond that I do not admire.”

Large fancy blue diamonds have been sold for record-breaking figures at auctions and other sales, several have had illustrious provenance through its mine origins and ownership throughout centuries. The most famous blue is the Hope Diamond, last purchased by famed luxury jeweler, Harry Winston, who donated it to the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in 1958.

The asking price for the “Royal Blue” ring is more than $924,500 per carat, which seems a bit steep, particularly since it has no known provenance. However, it is only about half of the per-carat price of a 5.30 blue diamond purchased by another famed jeweler, Laurence Graff, at a Bonhams auction in London in April 2013. The final price was $9.6 million or $1.8 million per carat.

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