We cannot get enough of coloured gemstones, as you’ll discover in our Sarpa and Candy collections. Whether oval, cushion or emerald cut, vibrant yellow, sky blue or fuchsia pink in colour, Aenea’s appetite for gemstones is insatiable.
Intrigued by the world’s many rare and unique stones, we’ve unearthed the world’s five most expensive gemstones ever sold at auction, with astonishing prices and attributes that have wowed the world’s gemological experts.
Read on to discover them for yourself...
The Oppenheimer Blue
Sold in May this year at a Christie’s Geneva auction, The Oppenheimer Blue is the world’s largest vivid blue diamond, making it not only extremely rare but also highly desirable. This striking 14.62 carat diamond sold for a breathtaking $57.5 million (€51.4m) to a private collector. The stone is said to have perfect proportions, an incredible hue and fabulous rectangular shape, with Christie’s François Curiel stating: “The Oppenheimer Blue can only be described as one of the rarest gems in the world. It is the gem of gems.”
Elizabeth Taylor’s Emerald
As a life-long fan of Bulgari jewellery, Elizabeth Taylor knew a thing or two about vibrant coloured gemstones. This striking Colombian emerald was owned by Taylor and was part of a transformable piece of jewellery created by the Italian jewellery house. Totalling 23.46 carat, it sold at auction in 2011 for a cool £43 million (€49m), but offers the lucky owner multiple ways to wear it; the emerald not only forms part of a brooch, but can also be attached to a diamond and emerald necklace as a pendant. It also set the record for the highest price paid at auction for a piece of Bulgari jewellery.
The Unique Pink
Another extraordinarily rare diamond, this time a fancy vivid pink diamond known as the Unique Pink. This striking pear-shaped diamond totals 15.38 carat, and sold at a Sotheby’s Geneva auction in May 2016 for $31.6 million (€28.3m). Set in a simple setting, the diamond was mined near to Kimberley, South Africa, and was sold to an Asian private buyer, who bid for the diamond via telephone.
The Sunrise Ruby
This ‘pigeon’s blood’ red ruby is a striking cushion cut stone totalling 25.59 carat. Named after a poem of the same name, it broke a world record in 2015, tripling the previous price for a ruby at auction, when it sold at Sotheby’s Geneva for £19.6 million (€22.7m). A rare natural Burmese ruby, it was mounted by Cartier and sold in an elegant ring setting. Details about the stone, which was appraised by Switzerland’s gemological institute SSEF, noted that Burma rubies of this size and colour are extremely rare. “Thus, the described gemstone with its combination of outstanding characteristics can be considered a unique treasure of nature,” it said.
As world-renowned diamond jewellers and collectors, the Moussaieff family owns some of the world’s rarest diamonds. But they also sell them, and in 2014 set a world auction record at Christie’s Hong Kong for a fancy red heart-shaped diamond. The 2.09 carat ring sold for $5.1 million (€4.5m) to a private investor. At the time of the sale, Vickie Sek, director of Christie’s jewelry and jadeite department, said: “One of the finest red diamonds ever offered for sale achieved a world record price of well over $2 million per carat. It is also the most expensive red diamond ever sold at auction.”