The Farnese Blue diamond, which was passed down through European royal families for about 300 years, sold Tuesday for $1.4 million more than the maximum figure experts estimated it would fetch.
Sotheby's Mining News
The gem’s final price nearly tripled Sotheby’s pre-sale estimate.
The Farnese Blue, passed down through European royalty, goes on sale for first time as part of a Sotheby’s auction to be held in Geneva, on May 15.
With few exceptions, no one knew about this gem's existence.
The 102.34-carat white diamond is thought to be worth considerably more than previous auction records for similar pieces.
The stunning 59.6-carat diamond smashed the $60 million pre-sale estimate set by Sotheby's at Tuesday's auction in Hong Kong.
Experts predict the plum-size internally flawless pink gem could fetch over $60 million in Hong Kong next month.
"Blue Moon" is expected to fetch up to $55 million when it goes under Sotheby's hammer on Nov. 11, in Geneva.
After just three minutes of bidding, the final price was $22,090,000, including the buyer's premium.
The flawless, 100-carat diamond could fetch up to $25 million when it goes under Sotheby's hammer in New York on Tuesday
The gem, discovered a decade ago at one of De Beers mines in South Africa, is one of just five diamonds over 100 carats and of comparable quality to have been offered at an auction.
It has set a world auction record on a per-carat basis for a gem of this colour.
The diamond is expected to fetch between $12.8 million and $15.4 million at auction on October 7.
Flawless pink stone was expected to fetch $60 million.