An extremely rare Purple-Pink diamond, dubbed ‘Sakura’ has sold for a record $29 million at an auction in Hong Kong.
This 15.81-carat gem came set on a simple platinum ring. The Sakura diamond is the largest diamond of its kind to sell on auction, according to Christie’s, the auction house that managed the sale. Though they had targeted a sale price of 300 million Hong Kong Dollars(US$38 million), the 226 million Hong Kong Dollars(US$29 million) received was significant nonetheless.
An anonymous telephonic bidder made the final winning bid to buy the diamond. ‘Sakura’ is a Japanese word for a cherry blossom that blooms only for a short time when the spring season begins. This wasn’t the only fancy color diamond that sold at this high-end auction, a love heart-shaped pink diamond, called the ‘Sweet Heart’ diamond also sold for a modest price of 50 million Hong Kong Dollars(US$8.3 million).
Generally, most diamonds sold at regular diamond stores are round and colorless, colored diamonds are extremely prized and are considered rare possessions. The chairman of Christie’s jewelry department, Vickie Sek said in a phone interview that the diamond was named after the Cherry Blossom as it ‘exactly’ matched with its color. The diamond also has the distinction of being ‘internally flawless’ as many diamonds usually contain some kind of inclusions in them. Pink diamonds come in various shades. The Sakura is different as it came with a purple tinge in it. Before this, a 14.8-carat pink diamond named ‘The Spirit of the Rose’ was sold last year for US$ 27 million by the Sotheby auction house in Geneva. However, the title for the most expensive fancy color diamond to be sold rests with the ‘CTF Pink Star’ diamond that was sold by Sotheby’s auction house in Hong Kong for a record US$ 71.4 million in 2017. This diamond weighed an astonishing 59.6 carats.
Jewelry sales during the pandemic
Surprisingly, industry analysts and insiders say they have seen a surge in people buying jewelry despite the restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic. Understandably, people prefer to buy necklaces and earrings as opposed to rings as they have to look their best when working online. Jewelers also say people compensate for the lack of traveling opportunities by buying ‘feel good’ pieces of jewelry. In fact, people are using the time in lockdown to ‘celebrate life’- jewelers talk of customers ‘redesigning’ their engagement rings as they spend time together with their spouse. At the high-end luxury jewelry Boucheron’s Paris showroom, the first lockdown in May 2020 failed to deter people from buying high-end jewelry pieces for themselves. In fact, many reputed jewelry retailers are now jumping on the e-commerce bandwagon as they would like a slice of the online e-commerce pie.
Whatever be the reason, there will be buyers for jewelry for all prices despite unfavorable conditions like the COVID pandemic or economic recession.