‘Bleu Royal’ Takes Crown as Top Auction Jewel of 2023

AuctionsNov 08, 2023

‘Bleu Royal’ Takes Crown as Top Auction Jewel of 2023

A buyer paid $44 million for the 17.61-carat fancy vivid blue diamond.

17.61-carat fancy vivid blue Bleu Royal diamond
A buyer whose identity has not been disclosed paid $44 million for the 17.61-carat fancy vivid blue “Bleu Royal” diamond at Christie’s Geneva Tuesday. The pear-shaped diamond had been part of a private collection for 50 years; Tuesday marked its first appearance at auction.
Geneva—Christie’s Geneva jewelry auction garnered $77.7 million Tuesday, with a single diamond accounting for more than half the sale’s total and becoming the most expensive jewel sold at auction so far this year.

The 17.61-carat fancy vivid, internally flawless “Bleu Royal” diamond sold for $44 million (or $2.5 million per carat), in the middle of its pre-sale estimated range of $35 million to $50 million. 

The pear-shaped Bleu Royal was the largest IF fancy vivid blue diamond ever to come to auction, and it is one of only three fancy vivid blues weighing more than 10 carats ever to appear at a Christie’s sale. 

The auction house said bidding took seven minutes.
A buyer whose identity has not been disclosed ultimately snapped up the stone, which is set in a platinum ring and flanked by D, IF pear brilliant-cut diamonds weighing 3.12 carats and 3.07 carats. 

 Related stories will be right here … 

The Bleu Royal was the top lot of Christie’s Geneva “Magnificent Jewels” auction, which was 93 percent sold by lot.

Another natural color diamond, an 8.77-carat fancy intense pink diamond, was the sale’s second highest-grossing lot, though it came in well behind the Bleu Royal at $5.2 million.  

Other highlights of the jewelry auction include an unheated 21.88-carat Burmese ruby set in an 18-karat gold ring with baguette-cut diamonds ($2.6 million) that is attributed to Harry Winston; a diamond and platinum ring by Graff featuring a 36.45-carat rectangular-shaped unheated Burmese sapphire ($1.6 million); and a pair of Art Deco earrings featuring carved emeralds, onyx and diamonds signed by Cartier circa 1925 ($769,143). 

The Magnificent Jewels sale was part of Christie’s fall “Luxury Week” in Geneva, which also included two live watch sales held Monday, “Passion for Time” and “Rare Watches.”

Those sales totaled $62 million, pushing Christie’s Luxury Week total to nearly $140 million.

The top lots of the watch auctions included the Grande & Petite Sonnerie No.1 by Philippe Dufour ($5.7 million), which took two-and-a-half years to make, and the Rolex Ref. 1675 GMT Master Marlon Brando wore in “Apocalypse Now” ($5.1 million).

Christie’s “Jewels Online: The Geneva Edit” sale continues now through Nov. 16 and includes the pearl choker Audrey Hepburn donned in “Roman Holiday.”

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