By Brecken Branstrator
brecken.branstrator@nationaljeweler.com
The 118.88-carat unheated Burmese sapphire pictured here, as well as the 6.41-carat unheated Burmese pigeon’s blood ruby and diamond ring, are expected to be among the tops lots in Sotheby’s Hong Kong’s Oct. 7 Magnificent Jewels auction.
Hong Kong—A special blue sapphire from the “mythical world” of 100-carat-plus gems will head to the auction block next week at Sotheby’s Hong Kong.

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A 118.88-carat unheated Burmese sapphire (pictured at right), dubbed “royal blue” in color by both the SSEF and Gübelin labs, will lead Sotheby’s Hong Kong Magnificent Jewels auction on Oct. 7.

The rare cushion-shaped stone is surrounded by pear-shaped diamonds weighing 16.06 total carats and set in a platinum pendant.

It’s the largest Burmese “royal blue” sapphire to be put up for auction at Sotheby’s in the last 20 years, the company said.

Sotheby’s said it expects the stone to sell for more than $5 million. 

The Oct. 7 Magnificent Jewels auction in Hong Kong has 118 lots, many of which celebrate color, Sotheby’s said, including several rare colored gemstones and diamonds, avant-garde designs from contemporary Hong Kong jewelers, and iconic designs from houses like Harry Winston and Cartier.

Another expected top lot of the sale is a ring featuring a 4.84-carat fancy vivid blue internally flawless pear-shaped diamond with two brilliant-cut diamond accents weighing 1.10 carats each in platinum and pink gold. 

Pictured below, it’s estimated to sell for between $7.2 million and $8.5 million.


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There will also be a pair of 18-karat white gold earrings set with pear-shaped colorless diamonds weighing 5.95 and 5.24 carats suspended from a pair of fancy intense blue diamonds weighing 1.95 and 1.63 carats.

They are expected to garner between $3.6 million and $4.6 million.

A 6.41-carat unheated Burmese pigeon’s blood ruby and diamond 18-karat gold ring (seen below) designed and mounted by Hong Kong high jewelry house Forms could sell for as much as $2.9 million.

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The auction will also include a selection of “imperial green” jadeite pieces—referring to the finest specimen of Type A, or natural, jadeite jade with a vibrant green color that’s almost transparent.

Highlighting this section is a necklace comprised of 43 jadeite beads of highly translucent brilliant emerald green color weighing approximately 630 carats in total with a clasp set with brilliant-cut and baguette diamonds, as seen below.

A pre-sale estimate for this piece was not available by press time.

Also pictured is a jadeite, fancy vivid purplish-pink diamond and diamond ring designed by Hong Kong designer Nicholas Lieou that could sell for between $1.4 million and $2 million.

In pairing an imperial green jadeite cabochon with pink diamonds, the designer bridged Eastern and Western aesthetics, the auction house said.

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The Magnificent Jewels auction is scheduled to take place just two days after the close of another notable sale at Sotheby’s Hong Kong.

On Oct. 5, the house will hold the live auction of a 102.39-carat oval-shaped D flawless diamond that’s being offered without estimate or reserve.

Online bidding for the stone started Sept. 15.

As of Thursday morning, the highest online bid was about $11 million at current exchange rates.

Editor’s note: This story was updated on Oct. 1 to reflect the pre-sale estimate of the 118.88-carat blue sapphire provided by Sotheby’s post-publication.


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