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November 14, 2012updated Feb 13, 2013

Archduke Joseph Diamond Smashes World Record at Christie’s Geneva Auction

By Pardhasaradhi Gonuguntla

Geneva, Switzerland—Reported by Elite Traveler, the private jet lifestyle magazine

On November 13, Christie’s Geneva auction of Magnificent Jewels realized a total of $85,049,806, selling 84% by lot and 86% by value. This extraordinary result, combined with the total achieved for the category in May, concludes the most successful year for Christie’s Jewelry department in Switzerland, with annual sales exceeding $195.2 million.

Riding the fine diamond auction surge—which has seen Christie’s set the world auction records for the most valuable Golconda diamonds, including for blue, pink and colorless diamonds. The top of this year’s lot was the historical 76.02 carats cushion-shaped, Archduke Joseph Diamond which sold for $21,474,525 (a staggering $282,545 per carat), setting a new world record at auction for a colorless diamond. Over the seven hour long sale a total of 19 lots sold above $1 million with 147 buyers coming from 28 countries, competing enthusiastically in the room, on the telephone and online.

“I am thrilled but not surprised that the Archduke Joseph Diamond should have fetched such a high price. It is considered the finest and largest perfect Golconda diamond ever to appear at auction, with a noble lineage and royal provenance which literally ‘Fit for a Queen,’” Said Alfredo J. Molina, the diamond’s former owner and CEO of America’s, Black, Starr & Frost Jewelers, highlighting, in the process, the world-sought gems that have helped to turn Christie’s into the global-auction leader that it is today.

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