A rare purple-pink diamond could fetch up to $38 million (£27 million) when it goes on sale in Hong Kong next week.
The sizable stone, known as the Sakura, takes its name from the Japanese word for cherry blossom on account of its comparable hue and is the largest purple-pink "flawless" diamond ever to appear at auction.
The rare stone is set on a simple platinum ring and has been classified as internally flawless, meaning that any blemishes are only visible under close magnification. It has also been classed as being "fancy vivid," a measure of intense colour achieved by only four per cent of pink diamonds, according to a press release from Christie's, the auction house organising the sale in Hong Kong on 23 May.
In the rarefied world of pink diamonds, large stones are near impossible to find and cut. Christie’s claims that fewer than 10 per cent of pink diamonds weigh more than one-fifth of a carat. The Sakura’s is nearly 80 times that at an unprecedented 15.81 carats.
The Sakura is also almost one whole carat heavier than The Spirit of the Rose. This 14.8-carat stone fetched almost $27 million (£19 million) at Sotheby’s last year to become the most expensive purple-pink diamond to sell at auction.
“This exceptionally rare and magnificent wonder of nature represents a unique expression of identity and mesmerizing beauty through its enthralling purple-pink hue, that will undoubtedly capture the hearts of discerning connoisseurs and collectors worldwide,” Vickie Sek, chairman of jewellery at Christie’s Asia Pacific, said in a statement.
In 2017, a 59.6-carat pink diamond sold for a record $71.2 million (£50.6 million) at Sotheby's Hong Kong. The diamond, which was purchased by Hong Kong jewellers Chow Tai Fook and renamed "CTF Pink Star," remains the most expensive polished diamond of any colour sold at auction.