Despite its relative newness to the auction market, and as a diamond with a fairly minimal backstory, this in itself holds a certain appeal. “We are delighted to be celebrating 10 years of Noble Jewels sales at Sotheby’s Geneva, and certainly provenance is one factor which appeals to some of the buyers who participate in our sales,” Bennett explains. “However, the discovery of a new diamond, of this quality, which has never been offered at auction before or worn by anyone, offers a different kind of opportunity: for bidders to play a part in the start of a diamond’s story, before it has ‘belonged’ to anyone.”
A chance to possess a brand new jewel, apparently, is just as rare as finding a pink diamond. According to Sotheby’s, of all the diamonds that are submitted to the GIA each year, less than 0.02% are predominantly pink – which may provide an idea of what an extremely rare occurrence it is to discover a gem-quality pink diamond of any size. This makes The Raj Pink well-suited to an appearance on the prestigious auction block of Sotheby’s Geneva, where it will inevitably appeal to eagle-eyed, enthusiastic collectors.
“Over the years, Geneva has become the world’s most important centre for jewellery auctions. This tradition goes back 30 years, to the legendary sale of the Jewels of the Duchess of Windsor at Sotheby’s Geneva in 1987,” says Bennett. “From a practical point of view, the city’s geographical location and central time zone also allows bidders from all over the world to take part in the auctions remotely.” Across the globe, it appears the auction market’s desire for pink diamonds – not to mention diamonds in other shades – is already growing noticeably.
“We’ve really seen demand for coloured diamonds take off during the last 10 years. I think that people have begun to really understand just how rare these stones are, and as that understanding deepens, we’ve seen a number of record prices within a very short space of time. Of course, the media attention and excitement that generates contributes even further to the general awareness among collectors and the general public.” When asked whether there’s a possibility of The Raj Pink coming close to matching or beating the record set by The Pink Star, Bennett is quick to clarify the differences between the two.
“At this level of rarity and importance, each diamond is unique and has its own distinct personality. I should point out, however, that the Pink Star was an even richer colour grade of Fancy Vivid Pink,” he adds.
As for those collectors who aren’t quite so compelled by The Raj Pink, they might want to look in the direction of Lot 337: a Fancy Vivid Blue diamond ring crafted by the Israeli jeweller Moussaieff (pictured below). With a top estimate of just over US$17.7 million (SFr. 17.6 million), it’s just as respectable an example of a terrific coloured diamond worth bidding on, and it also happens to be framed in marquise-shaped pink diamonds. There’s no escaping the rose-tinted life these days.