A pair of diamond earrings sell for $80 million at auction, setting record

A pair of diamond earrings sell for $80 million at auction, setting record
PHOTO: Sotheby's

A pair of fancy coloured diamond earrings sold for a whopping US$57.4 million (S$80 million) at auction Tuesday, setting a new record.

The pear-shaped earrings were being auctioned separately by Sotheby's, however, they were sold to a single, anonymous buyer.

The buyer snatched up "The Apollo Blue" earring for US$42.1 million, and "The Artemis Pink" diamond for US$15.3 million. Combined, the pair set a record for the most expensive earrings ever sold at auction.

The prior record was held by the Miroir de l'Amour earrings sold by Christie's last year for US$17.6 million.

The Apollo stone is a 14.54-carat blue diamond, while the nearly identical Artemis stone is a 16-carat pink diamond.

The auction house had estimated that the pink diamond would sell for between US$12.5 million and US$18 million, while the blue stone would go for between US$38 million and US$50 million.

Sotheby's said demand for coloured diamonds remains strong. This spring the auction house broke the world record for the most expensive diamond ever sold at auction with the $71.2 million sale of the "Pink Star" diamond.

"In the last five to 10 years, the price seems to be escalating rapidly. And we just sold this world record stone, and that was a pink diamond," said David Bennett, worldwide chairman of Sotheby's International Jewellery division, ahead of the auction.

"Certainly people who own important coloured diamonds are aware that the market is strong."

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