Pink Legacy fetches $50 million at Geneva auction

The 19 Carat pink diamond is making international headlines after it was bought by Harry Winston for a whopping $50 million in an auction arranged by Christie’s on Tuesday.


The diamond nicknamed “Pink Legacy” priced $2.6 million dollars per-carat, is the highest per carat for a pink diamond in the history according to Christie’s auction house.

The diamond that was previously owned by the Oppenheimer family, formerly ran the De Beers mining company. The diamond was referred to as “one of the world’s greatest diamonds” by Christie’s International Head of Jewellery, Rahul Kadakia.

‘To find a diamond of this size with this colour is pretty much unreal,’ says Kadakia. ‘You may see this colour in a pink diamond of less than one carat. But this is almost 19 carats and it’s as pink as can be. It’s unbelievable.’

Post auction, the new owners have renamed the gem to The Winston Pink Legacy. According to Francois Curiel, head of Christie’s European branch, “this stone is for me the Leonardo da Vinci of diamonds.”

Scientifically diamonds are classified in two main types, Type I and Type II. While most diamonds fall in the former category, the ones that fall in the later type are known to be extremely rare. Regarding the exceptional quality of the extinguished gemstone, Kadakia explains that pink diamonds falls in the rare Type IIa category.

While most pink diamonds reveal a colour modifier like brown, purple, orange or grey, the Pink Legacy shows no trace of a secondary colour.

The 18.96 diamond’s even colour distribution, combined with a balanced saturation, tone and striking pink hue, qualify the gem for the coveted ‘Fancy Vivid’ colour grading from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). Only one in 100,000 diamonds possess a colour deep enough to qualify as ‘Fancy Vivid’. The rare characteristic of Fancy Vivid Pink range is one in which fewer than 10 per cent of the pink diamonds weigh more than one-fifth of a carat. A Fancy Vivid Pink Diamond that is more than 10 carats is one of the rarest phenomena. In the 250 year old history of auction housed by Christie’s, only four stones have appeared so far.