Published: November 28, 2017
NEW YORK CITY – The highlight of Christie’s Magnificent Jewels Hong Kong auction, a 14.93 carat fancy vivid pink diamond, sold for $31,861,000, including the buyer’s premium, matching a world-record per-carat price for a pink diamond. Known as “The Pink Promise Diamond,” the pink oval mixed cut stone had intrigued collectors and jewelry lovers as it toured New York, Geneva and Hong Kong prior to the auction. Its fancy vivid pink designation by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) represents the rarest and most prized color grade in pink diamonds. The sale of the ‘Pink Promise’ diamond represented a lucrative gamble for its previous owner, diamonteer and haute jeweler Stephen Silver. His visionary gift for detecting sometimes hidden qualities in gemstones led Mr. Silver to recut what was originally a 16.21 carat Fancy Intense pink diamond in a quest to achieve the stone’s maximum color potential. The exhaustive and risky recutting process led to “The Pink Promise” and its impressive auction sale.
Stephen Silver bought the original 16.10 carat fancy intense pink diamond in 2013, but with the practiced eye of a Gemological Institute of American (GIA) certified gemologist, he noticed that the stone’s cut made some areas of the stone appear to be washed out, representing an opportunity to recut the stone and possibly achieve a higher color grade. Over a period of three years, Mr. Silver worked with a master gem-cutter to carefully plot a new cut for the ultra-rare Type IIa pink diamond, cutting the gem down facet by facet to save the most carat weight while coaxing the stone to yield the highest possible color. With each carat cut, Stephen Silver and his cutter gambled potentially millions of dollars in lost carat weight if the trimmed down stone failed to raise its color grade as hoped. Finally, a new GIA certificate affirmed that “The Pink Promise” diamond, with its final weight of 14.93 carats, had officially attained its latent potential and a new fancy vivid pink color grading, and a significantly higher appraisal value. A promise fulfilled, the stone was aptly named “The Pink Promise.” The ultra-rare Type IIa fancy vivid pink diamond was also assessed with an VVS1 clarity—the grade just under flawless—with no imperfections visible to the naked eye, and nearly imperceptible flaws revealed under magnification.
“The Pink Promise” wasn’t Mr. Silver’s first foray into purchasing important colored diamond stones. Over his career, Stephen Silver has cultivated a reputation amongst color gemstone collectors as a global leader with an extraordinary ability to procure, design, and handcraft the world’s finest jewelry and gemstones. Mr. Silver has worked with (and re-imagined) some of the most precious and coveted stones in the world, including precious fancy color diamond cuts in fancy purplish red (“The Cranberry”), fancy vivid orange, “The Million Dollar Pumpkin,” and fancy vivid blue, each ranging from 1 to 6 carats in size. Given that only one in one thousand diamonds mined can be classified by GIA as fancy color diamonds, color stones of this size and quality are rare.
Remarking on “The Pink Promise” and its sale, Stephen Silver commented, “The work we did on this particular diamond was the most challenging recut in which I have been involved, due to the technical difficulty and large financial risk. It is a privilege, however, to work with a world-class team and have my name associated with one of the world’s great gemstones.”
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