Epic Diamonds

13 Record-Breaking Diamond Sales at Auction in 2021

These unforgettable diamonds sold for top dollar at auction.

yellow diamond sale auction

Diamonds were the most sought-after jewels at auctions around the world in 2021. Like an old master’s painting, jewelry collectors and connoisseurs recognized that a fancy colored diamond or a stone with an historic provenance can’t be repeated. That’s why rare diamonds – D flawless, fancy colors and legacy stones – commanded top dollar. Here are 13 of the most significant diamond jewelry sales at auction in 2021.

Read More: Why You Should be Buying Jewelry at Auctions

1. The diamond: 6.11-carat fancy intense blue diamond ring.

Photo credit: Sotheby’s

Sale price: $8 million (estimate $4.5-$6.5 million). It made $1.3 million per carat.

The auction: Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels, New York on December 7.

The appeal: A saturated blue diamond of this size and quality is rare, and informed buyers know that if they pass this up, they won’t likely see a stone of this caliber again.

2. The diamond: 15.8-carat internally flawless vivid purple-pink diamond ring.

sakura diamond sale auctions
Photo credit: Christie’s

Sale price: $29.3 million (estimate $25-$38 million). It made $1.9 million per carat.

The auction: Christie’s Magnificent Jewels, Hong Kong on May 23.

The appeal: Christened the Sakura Diamond, which in Japanese means cherry blossom, the stone reflects the flower’s saturated pink tones. More than its beauty, this record-breaking jewel is the largest vivid purple-pink diamond ever to be auctioned. It’s a transportable investment.

3. The diamond: 7-carat fancy blue pear-shaped diamond.

diamond sale auctions ring
Photo credit: Christie’s

Sale price: $2.2 million (estimate $1.4-$1.8 million)

The auction: Christie’s Magnificent Jewels, New York on December 8.

The appeal: It’s not the most intense shade of blue, but it’s simply a light-blue beautiful diamond that will enhance anyone’s jewelry collection.

4. The diamond: 101.38-carat D flawless pear-shaped diamond ring.

diamond sale auctions
Photo credit: Sotheby’s

Sale price: An anonymous buyer purchased the ring for $12.3 million with cryptocurrency (estimate $10-$15 million).

The auction: Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels, Hong Kong on July 9.

The appeal: When the auction house announced it wouldaccept Bitcoin and Ethereum, in addition to traditional currency, the diamond made headlines as the first important jewel offered for cryptocurrency at auction. At 100 plus carats, it’s also the second-largest pear-shaped diamond ever sold at auction.  

5. The diamond: 24.45 carat D flawless heart-shaped diamond pendant necklace.

heart diamond sale auctions
Photo credit: Christie’s

Sale price: $2 million (estimate $1.5-$2.5 million)

The auction: Christie’s Jewels Online: Summer Sparkle, August 4-18.

The appeal: A heart-shaped diamond of this quality and size is unusual because the cutter sacrifices considerable carat weight to achieve the heart. Maybe that’s what motivated the buyer to purchase it sight unseen online. It was the second highest price achieved for a jewel sold in an online sale at Christie’s.

6. The diamond: Harry Winston diamond and platinum earrings, circa 1957.

diamond sale auctions
Photo credit: Phillips Jewels

Sale price: $390,600 (estimate $300,000-$400,000)

The auction: Phillips Jewels, New York on June 25.

The appeal: With two exceptional pear-shaped diamonds and two marquise-cut diamonds weighing over 13 carats combined, these are classic Harry Winston. Made in 1957, Mr. Winston selected the stones and set them in a timeless design that highlights the diamonds without any visible platinum setting. They are the epitome of elegance.

7. The diamond: The Chrysler Diamond, a 54.03-carat D internally flawless pear-shaped diamond.

diamond sale auctions necklace
Photo credit: Christie’s

Sale price: $5 million (estimate $3.5-$4.5 million).

The auction: Christie’s Magnificent Jewels, New York on June 8.

The appeal: It’s an heirloom with exceptionalprovenance. It was owned by Louis XIV and later purchased by Thelma Chrysler Foy, daughter of Walter Chrysler, railroad and automotive executive and namesake of New York City’s iconic Art Deco skyscraper. Harry Winston purchased the diamond from the heiress in 1958. It’s classified as a type2a diamond (it doesn’t get any better), a category of stones that accounts for less than 1% of all gem-quality diamonds. 

8. The diamond: The Dancing Sun, a 204.36-carat fancy intense yellow unmounted diamond.

diamond sale auctions dancing sun
Photo credit: Christie’s

Sale price: $4.9 million (estimate $3.5-$5.5 million).

The auction: Christie’s Magnificent Jewels, New York on June 8.

The appeal: This mega diamond was cut from the largest polished diamond mined in North America at the Diavik Diamond Mine in Canada’s Northwest Territories near the Arctic Circle. The original 552.74-carat rough diamond produced this jewel along with six additional diamonds ranging from 14.52 to 1.06 carats. It’s a piece of geological history.

9. The diamond: 8.21-carat oval-shaped diamond and platinum ring, circa 1910.

Photo credit: Bonham’s

Sale price: $500,313 (estimate $170,000-$270,000). 

The auction: Bonhams New York Jewels, May 19. 

The appeal: There was frenzied bidding over this ring, which finally sold for double the estimate because the stone has a charm that can’t be replicated today. Its soft sparkle gives it a romantic spirit that seems to resonate with everyone.

10. The diamond: 50.03-carat unmounted G color round diamond.

diamond sale auctions
Photo credit: Sotheby’s

Sale price: $2.7 million – no reserve (estimate $2.5-$5 million).

The auction: Sotheby’s New York on June 17

The appeal: It’s the first time the auction house put an important diamond on the market without a reserve – which means there is no minimum bid. A top-quality stone of this size attracted more than 30 bids and set a world record as the most expensive jewel sold in an online sale. It’s also one of the largest round diamonds ever offered at auction.

11. The diamond: 4-carat oval-shape fancy vivid yellow diamond ring surrounded by over 5 carats of colorless diamonds.

yellow diamond sale auctions
Photo credit: Phillips Jewels

Sale price: $240,000 (estimate $160,000-$220,000).

The auction: Phillips Jewels New York, December 6

The appeal: The vivid yellow diamond is set in an exceptional Belle Époque ring surrounded by colorless diamonds. It’s a timeless design that is exquisitely made.

12. The diamond: A pair of perfectly matched D flawless square-cut diamond weighing 25.88 carats respectively.

diamond sale auctions earrings
Photo credit: Sotheby’s

Sale price: $5.6 million ($5.5-$6 million).

The auction: Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels, Geneva on November 10.

The appeal: It’s difficult to find a perfectly matched pair of diamond of this size and quality. If you can afford it, these are the ultimate luxury studs – and a family heirloom.

13. The diamond: 62.-65-carat D color pear-shaped diamond.

diamond sale auctions ring
Photo credit: Stephanie Gottlieb

Sale price: $2.9 million (estimate $2.5-$3.5 million). 

The auction: Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels, New York on December 7.

The appeal: This exceptional quality pear-shape diamond is almost identical to Liz Taylor’s famous 69.42-carat pear-shape stone. The glamorous actress – with a penchant for the best jewels – wore the diamond in an exquisite necklace. The new owner could easily transform in the ring into a pendant necklace – and feel like a Hollywood star.