‘Estrela de Fura’ Ruby, Purplish Pink Diamond Sell For $30M+ Each At Sotheby’s

AuctionsJun 08, 2023

‘Estrela de Fura’ Ruby, Purplish Pink Diamond Sell For $30M+ Each At Sotheby’s

The “Estrela de Fura” is now the most expensive ruby ever sold at auction, while the purplish pink diamond set a couple records of its own.

The Eternal Pink diamond
“The Eternal Pink,” a 10.57-carat fancy vivid purplish pink diamond, set a new world record price as well as a new price-per-carat record for a diamond of its color.
View Slideshow
New York—In a first for any auction house, Sotheby’s sold two jewels for more than $30 million each on the same day—one of multiple records set at Thursday’s Magnificent Jewels auction. 

The Mozambiquan ruby “Estrela de Fura 55.22” sold for $34.8 million ($630,288 per carat), a world record for a ruby and any colored gemstone at auction. It topped its pre-sale estimate of $30 million.

A private collector from the Middle East bought the gemstone.

The fancy purplish-pink diamond, “The Eternal Pink,” also sold for $34.8 million ($3.3 million per carat).

Sotheby’s said the 10.57-carat stone is the most vivid pink diamond to ever come to market.

The sale set a world auction record for a fancy purplish pink diamond and a new price-per-carat record for the color grade, though the stone didn’t quite live up to the pre-sale hype

Both gemstones were sold at the Magnificent Jewels auction Thursday, where total sales added up to $95.9 million (estimate $87.9 – $99.1 million), setting yet another record as the highest ever total for any jewelry auction ever staged at Sotheby’s in New York.

The previous record of $65.1 million was set in April 2015.

“We witnessed the historic sale of not one, but two of the most exquisite and important diamonds and gemstones to ever hit the auction block,” Head of Sotheby’s Jewelry, Americas Quig Bruning said.

Estrela de Fura 55.22
“It’s difficult to express the range of emotions I felt when I first laid eyes on the ‘Estrela de Fura 55.22’, but to put it simply, I was entranced. With its unprecedented size, piercing color and rare degree of optical transparency and clarity, it truly deserved the record-breaking price today, as it now joins the ranks of the world’s most legendary gemstones,” Bruning said.

The Estrela De Fura 55.22
The “Estrela De Fura 55.22” is the largest gem-quality ruby to ever appear at auction and the most valuable colored gemstone ever sold at auction. It garnered $34.8 million at Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels auction on Thursday.

The 55-carat ruby began as a 101-carat rough discovered at Fura Gems’ ruby mine in Mozambique in July 2022, one of the largest ruby deposits in the world.

It had begun collecting accolades before the jewelry auction when named the largest gem-quality ruby to ever appear at auction.

Rubies of this importance and magnitude are exceedingly rare, the auction house said. Only two examples having ever surpassed $15 million at auction, making the gem’s appearance itself a landmark event.

Fura Gems founder and CEO Dev Shetty called the achievement “a monumental milestone in FURA Gems incredible journey.”

“In just five years, our company has experienced extraordinary growth, culminating in a historic moment where we proudly set a world record for any ruby or colored gemstone sold at auction.”

The record previously was held by the 25.59-carat Burmese stone, the “Sunrise Ruby,” which garnered $30.3 million at Sotheby’s Geneva in May 2015 but recently was sold again at auction for much less

In Sotheby’s “First Look” for the gemstone prior to auction, it said even in its rough state, experts considered the Mozambiquan ruby to be, “an exceptional treasure of nature for its fluorescence, outstanding clarity and vivid red hue, known as ‘pigeon’s blood’—a color traditionally associated only with Burmese rubies.”

While Shetty said the 55-carat ruby is a “once-in-a-generation discovery” and “the ultimate representation of Fura Mozambique rubies,” he believes the sale could put Mozambique on the map as a significant source for the gemstone moving forward.

Its name means “Star of Fura” in Portuguese, a nod to one of the languages spoken in Mozambique.

“This ruby is a gift from Mother Earth, and its new owners will carry an enormous legacy for many years to come,” Shetty said.

“Today’s achievement not only validates our belief but also establishes a significant achievement for Fura Gems, and sets a precedent for Mozambique rubies, elevating them to the esteemed status of their Burmese counterparts.”

Sotheby’s previously said a portion of the proceeds from the sale of the Estrela de Fura will be allocated toward setting up the Fura Training Academy, with the goal of promoting access to education and technical training in the fields of mining, engineering, carpentry and agriculture.

The Eternal Pink
“It was equally an honor to have handled a diamond as breathtaking and extraordinary in nature as ‘The Eternal Pink,’ and its price today reaffirms that Sotheby’s is the premier destination for the world’s rarest diamond creations,” Bruning said.

The Eternal Pink Diamond
“The Eternal Pink” sold for $34.8 million at Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels on June 8. It set a world auction record for a fancy purplish pink diamond and a new price-per-carat record for the color grade.

The internally flawless, fancy vivid purplish pink diamond’s sale price of $34.8 million far surpasses the previous record for a diamond of this color grade, a 10.64-carat fancy vivid purplish pink diamond sold for $19.9 million ($1.9 million per carat) at Sotheby’s Hong Kong in 2019.

However, the price paid for The Eternal Pink fell just below its pre-sale estimate.

Previously, the auction house thought the diamond would challenge the price-per-carat record for any diamond or gemstone sold at auction that is currently held by the Williamson Pink Star (sold for $57.7 million/$5.2 million per carat), placing The Eternal Pink’s pre-sale estimate at $35 million/$3.3 million per carat at the lowest.

De Beers, in partnership with the government of Botswana, unearthed the rough that became The Eternal Pink at the country’s Damtshaa mine.

Over a period of six months, it was fashioned into a cushion cut by Diacore’s team of artisans, who aimed to “maximize the diamond’s electric ‘bubblegum’ color to full potential,” the auction house said.

Bruning commented, “I proudly speak on behalf of the global Jewelry Department at Sotheby’s when I say how truly privileged we are to have been a steward of these ultra-rare gems and today’s results are further proof that there is continued demand for the finest diamonds and gemstones of the very highest order.”

 Related stories will be right here … 

More Jewelry Auction News
Sotheby’s found buyers for 91 percent of all lots at the auction, with more than two-third of sold lots achieving prices above their highest pre-sale estimates. Beyond the two jewels that surpassed the $30 million mark, an additional four pieces sold for more than $1 million.

Also up for sale at Sotheby’s Thursday were the 11 pieces in the collection of Constance Prosser Mellon and Constance Barber Mellon, all of which sold, totaling $6.9 million in combined sales. It outdid its collective estimate of $3.9-$6.1 million.

Highlights include a prolonged five-minute battle between eight bidders for a Cartier sapphire and diamond ring from the collection of Constance Prosser Mellon, culminating in a final sale of $3.3 million (estimate: $1.5-$2.5 million).

A Cartier sapphire and diamond ring from the collection of Constance Prosser
A Cartier sapphire and diamond ring from the collection of Constance Prosser sold for $3.3 million at Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels auction Thursday.

The 33.51-carat royal blue sapphire is of classic Burmese origin with no indication of heating.

Also from Constance Prosser’s collection, a sapphire and diamond necklace created by Cartier in the 1950s, found a buyer for $2.8 million (estimate $2-$3 million).

A Cartier sapphire and diamond necklace from the collection of Constance Prosser
A Cartier sapphire and diamond necklace from the collection of Constance Prosser sold for $2.8 million at Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels on June 8.

The necklace features five Kashmir sapphires, weighing a total of approximately 34.95 carats, and is further accented by round, baguette and square-cut diamonds.

“Epitomizing the bold visual language and finest quality of craftsmanship for which the prestigious house is so well-known, the necklace is also a fascinating embodiment of Cartier’s design evolution in response to the fashion of the times, illustrated here with the shortened choker—a noted departure from the longer, draped necklaces of the Art Deco period,” the auction house said.

Further property from the collections of Constance Prosser Mellon and Constance Barber Mellon will be sold in Sotheby’s Fine Jewels sale on June 14.

The catalog is available on Sotheby’s website.

“Today’s record-breaking result is a direct reflection and further confirmation of Sotheby’s position as a market leader at the highest echelon of the global jewelry industry,” said Sotheby’s Head of Magnificent Jewels, New York Catharine Becket. 

“We are honored to have brought to auction this exceptional selection of jewels—anchored by several private collections with storied provenance—encompassing top-quality diamonds, superlative colored gemstones, and signed jewels from the most esteemed houses.” 

The Latest

Adam Levine and Behati Prinsloo modeling Jacquie Aiche’s Rebel Heart collection
CollectionsApr 22, 2024
Jacquie Aiche’s New Campaign Stars Adam Levine, Behati Prinsloo

The “Rebel Heart” campaign embodies rebellion, romance, and sensuality, the brand said.

American Gem Society Conclave logo 2024
EditorsApr 22, 2024
The 22 Best Quotes from AGS Conclave 2024

Editor-in-Chief Michelle Graff shares the standout moments from the education sessions she attended in Austin last week.

Virtual Diamond Boutique
SourcingApr 22, 2024
Virtual Diamond Boutique Rebrands as ‘VDB’

The overhaul includes a new logo and enhanced digital marketplace.

Brought to you by
The Blueprint for Success in Scalable, Personalized Jewelry Retail

With Ho Brothers, you can unlock your brand's true potential and offer customers the personalized jewelry experiences they desire.

Signet Jewelers employees and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
MajorsApr 22, 2024
Signet Raises Nearly $9M for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

The money will go toward supporting ongoing research and aftercare programs for childhood cancer survivors.

Weekly QuizApr 19, 2024
This Week’s Quiz
Test your jewelry news knowledge by answering these seven questions.
Take the Quiz
Retrouvaí’s Treasure Necklace
CollectionsApr 19, 2024
Piece of the Week: Retrouvaí’s Treasure Necklace

A new addition to the “Heirloom” collection, this one-of-a-kind piece features 32 custom-cut gemstones.

Stock image crime handcuffs
CrimeApr 19, 2024
Grand Jury to Hear Case Against Jeweler Charged in Fatal Shove Following IJO Show

Last month in Dallas, David Walton pushed another jeweler, David Ettinger, who later died.

Jewelers of America Fly In Washington, D.C.
Brought to you by
How Jewelers of America Represents Your Business

For over 30 years, JA has advocated for the industry, fought against harmful legislation and backed measures that help jewelry businesses.

China Pearl collage
MajorsApr 19, 2024
Unique Designs Acquires China Pearl

The move will allow the manufacturing company to offer a more “diverse and comprehensive” range of products.

Printed and digital AGS Ideal grading reports
GradingApr 19, 2024
AGS Ideal Report Now Available in Printed Form

From now through mid-May, GIA will be offering the reports at a 50 percent discount.

Stock image of a polished diamond in tweezers
SourcingApr 18, 2024
Diamond Trade Remains Cautious Amid Economic Uncertainty

De Beers’ rough diamond sales were down 18 percent year-over-year in its latest round of sales.

Supplier BulletinApr 18, 2024
Discover History’s Hidden Gems at the Las Vegas Antique Jewelry & Watch Show

Sponsored by the Las Vegas Antique Jewelry & Watch Show

Kelly Yoch
WatchesApr 18, 2024
Watch E-tailer Collectability Hires Kelly Yoch

The Patek Philippe expert will serve as personal curator for the brand-focused company.

Interior of TAG Heuer Boutique on Carnival Cruise Ship
WatchesApr 18, 2024
TAG Heuer Opens Its Largest Standalone Boutique at Sea

The 553-square-foot shop is aboard the Carnival Jubilee cruise ship.

 Stock image of a gavel
Policies & IssuesApr 17, 2024
NDC Prevails in U.K. Case Over Lab-Grown Diamond Advertising

NDC filed a complaint against Skydiamond for use of phrases like “diamonds made entirely from the sky.”

John Carter, 2024 Shipley Award winner
Events & AwardsApr 17, 2024
And the 2024 Winner of the Shipley Award Is …

John Carter received the AGS’s highest honor Tuesday afternoon at Conclave in Austin, Texas.

Visual from Tiffany & Co.’s With Love Since 1837 campaign
FinancialsApr 17, 2024
LVMH’s Q1 Jewelry Sales Fall 5%

LVMH said the company performed well despite an uncertain geopolitical and economic environment.

 B&D ribbon cutting in RI
MajorsApr 17, 2024
Stuller’s B&D Opens New Headquarters

B&D Sales and Service held a ribbon-cutting event for its new location in Cranston, Rhode Island.

Model Wearing Eat Cake Collection
CollectionsApr 16, 2024
Akaila Reid Launches ‘Eat Cake’ Collection

It’s ultra-feminine and filled with gold, pearls, and soft pastels.

Emily Highet Morgan, Emily Bennett
MajorsApr 16, 2024
Loudr Adds 2 Directors

Emily Highet Morgan and Emily Bennett have joined the agency’s team.

Stuller catalogs
MajorsApr 16, 2024
Stuller Releases First Lab-Grown Diamond Jewelry Catalog

Its updated book for mountings is also now available.

Headshot of Karen Rentmeesters
SourcingApr 16, 2024
Karen Rentmeesters Takes Over as Interim CEO of AWDC

She has been with the organization since 2010, most recently serving as its chief officer of PR and industry relations.

Joyce’s Jewelry
TechnologyApr 15, 2024
Judge Rules Jeweler’s Lawsuit Against PNC Bank Can Move Forward

Joyce’s Jewelry sued the bank after cybercriminals drained its accounts of nearly $1.6 million through a series of wire transfers.

Alfred W. DeScenza
IndependentsApr 15, 2024
Alfred W. DeScenza of DeScenza Diamonds Dies at 95

He is remembered by loved ones for his loyalty, integrity, and kindness.

AGS Conclave 2024 logo Austin
Events & AwardsApr 15, 2024
10 Can’t-Miss Sessions at AGS Conclave 2024

From lab-grown diamonds and AI to the inevitable Taylor Swift mention, here are some of Conclave’s most intriguing educational offerings.

My Next Question webinar
Recorded WebinarsApr 12, 2024
Watch: What Jewelers Need to Know About Insurance

From cybersecurity liability to trade show coverage, insurance experts share tips on how to build the right policy.

Evil Eye Charm with Turquoise Disc
CollectionsApr 12, 2024
Piece of the Week: Lionheart’s Evil Eye Gemstone Charm

The charm is a modern rendition of the evil eye amulet that has been worn for thousands of years.


This site uses cookies to give you the best online experience. By continuing to use & browse this site, we assume you agree to our Privacy Policy