The CTF Pink Star
The Blue Moon of Josephine
The Sunrise Ruby
Sotheby’s has organised a number of record-breaking jewellery auctions from 2010 to 2019, with worldwide sales totalling over US$4.7 billion.
“The last ten years have seen a complete transformation of the jewellery auction market and without a doubt, this has been a defining decade in my 40-year career at Sotheby’s,” noted David Bennett, chairman of Sotheby’s International Jewellery Division. “We have rewritten the rulebook for our sales, connecting with collectors in the four corners of the globe as never before and witnessing first-hand the revolution of online bidding and social media.”
Among the highlights of the decade were the sale of the Graff Pink, the reappearance of the Duchess of Windsor’s jewels in 2010 and the world record auction of the CTF Pink Star. Also worth noting were jewellery pieces from the personal collection of Queen Marie-Antoinette.
“Embraced by an ever-expanding globalised audience and propelled by the digital revolution, show-stopping treasures have achieved unprecedented prices: The ten most valuable jewels ever sold at Sotheby’s all came under the hammer in the last ten years. These pieces were offered across our sales locations of Geneva, New York and Hong Kong, and have found new homes in collections around the world,” revealed the auction house.
Over the last 10 years, the company generated more than US$4.7 billion from the sale of 40,353 lots. Of these, 683 lots fetched more than US$1 million while 41 others sold above US$10 million.
The decade was dominated by exceptional pink and blue diamonds, which repeatedly broke the record for any jewel sold at auction. In 2017, the 59.60-carat CTF Pink Star, the largest fancy vivid pink diamond with internally flawless clarity ever graded, became the most valuable diamond or gemstone ever sold at auction, raking in US$71.2 million in Hong Kong.
The record had previously been beaten twice in Geneva. In 2010, the Graff Pink – a 24.78-carat Type IIA fancy intense pink diamond – fetched US$46.2 million.
In 2015, the Blue Moon of Josephine achieved US$48.5 million. The 12.03-carat internally flawless fancy vivid blue diamond also set the highest price-per-carat ever for a diamond or gemstone at US$4,028,941 per carat – a record that remains unbroken.