Will It Be World’s Most Expensive Jewel? Auction Of 12.03 Carat Fancy Blue Moon Diamond
September 22, 2015, Senior Editior
A Blue Moon Diamond gets its name from the expression ‘once in a blue moon’ which is used to describe something rare. Blue diamonds are created when boron mixes with carbon during the gems formation. When Petra Diamonds (owners of the famous Cullinan Mine in South Africa) discovered a 29.62 carat rough blue loose diamond, the industry went into a frenzy. The historic mine is one of the few reliable sources in the world for blue diamonds, but these highly rare gems still account for a minute fraction of the diamonds unearthed at the time.
Scientists from the National Gem and Mineral Collection at the Smithsonian Institution were fascinated by the extreme rarity of the Blue Moon. They studied the diamond and reported that under testing, they observed that the color of the Blue Moon is true and saturated throughout the diamond with no other colors present. The diamond was then exhibited in the Gem Vault of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County.
Commenting on the stone, Mineral and Gem Curator at the museum, Eloise Gailou remarked that the intense ocean blue color places this particular gem on the top of the rare list due to its color, clarity and size. The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) Monograph too said that the hue of the Blue Moon diamond is likely to have never before been seen within such a large diamond or any gemstone and could be indescribable to even the most experienced diamantaire or color theorist.
The Blue Moon Diamond comes from a 29.62 carat piece of rough that was sold for US$ 25.6 million to New York City based Cora International which then spent six months cutting and polishing it. Cora International is a leading luxury brand and is considered one of the world’s leading firms specializing in cutting large and important diamonds. They are renowned worldwide for their rare and unique diamonds of large sizes and vivid fancy colors.
This exquisite diamond weights 12.03 carats and has been graded Fancy Vivid Blue- the highest color possible for grading blue diamonds by the GIA. The cushion brilliant cut stone also boasts exceptional clarity, and has been declared internally flawless by the GIA.
Recently, leading auction house Sotheby’s announced that they will present the extraordinary Blue Moon Diamond, among the largest known fancy vivid blue diamonds, as the centerpiece of their auction of Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels in Geneva. The auction will take place on November 11, 2015 and comes with a market value of an estimated US$ 35-55 million.
While announcing the sale of the Blue Moon Diamond, David Bennett, Worldwide Chairman of Sotheby’s International Jewellery Division, commented “The tremendous excitement last year over the discovery of a 29.62-carat blue rough diamond at the Cullinan mine in South Africa has now been proved to have been totally justified. Weighing in at 12.03 carats, the ‘Blue Moon’ diamond is a simply sensational stone of perfect color and purity, combined with a superb cushion shape. Blue, for me, is the most mysterious and magical of all the colors of diamond, and the Blue Moon will now take its place among the most famous gems in the world.”