Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Flawless white diamond sells for record $30 million at Hong Kong auction

By Katie Hunt, CNN
November 26, 2013 -- Updated 1305 GMT (2105 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Oval diamond sells for record $30.6 million in Hong Kong
  • It was the largest diamond ever sold at auction
  • Diamond sold to unidentified Asian private collector

Hong Kong (CNN) -- A white diamond the size of a small egg has sold for $30.6 million at an auction in Hong Kong, smashing the world record for a jewel of its kind.

The flawless, 118-carat oval diamond was sold to an unidentified Asian collector, whose winning bid came at the lower end of the $28 million to $35 million estimate set by auction giant Sotheby's. It was the largest diamond ever sold at auction.

David Bennett, chairman of Sotheby's Jewelry Division for Europe and the Middle East, told CNN that diamonds could be bought as an investment or simply for the love of a beautiful and rare object.

"Asia has rapidly in the past 20 years become our most important sector of the buying public. They account for more than a third (of buyers)."

Are diamonds a good investment?

However, a rare blue diamond that was expected to fetch at least $19 million during the same sale failed to reach its reserve price.

The previous record for a white diamond was set in May at Christie's in Geneva when a pear-shaped jewel sold for $26.7 million.

The auction was part of a series of fall sales of art, jewelry and other collectibles held in the city by Sotheby's and its rivals.

READ: China's 'Last Supper' sets art world record

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
CNN Style
July 1, 2014 -- Updated 1536 GMT (2336 HKT)
Every June, 200,000 perfectly styled people attend the Glastonbury Festival, known as much for the music as the glamor on its muddy fields.
June 23, 2014 -- Updated 2324 GMT (0724 HKT)
What does an acclaimed chef do for an encore after he's closed the best restaurant in the world? Starts looking for the key to all creativity.
June 26, 2014 -- Updated 1255 GMT (2055 HKT)
French photographer takes us on a nostalgic trip to the golden age of Hollywood with images of glamorous movie palaces of the art deco era.
June 25, 2014 -- Updated 0854 GMT (1654 HKT)
BASEL, SWITZERLAND - JUNE 17: Visitor walk next to the artwork 'Continuel Mobile - Sphere rouge' by Michelangelo Pistoletto in the Unlimited section of Art Basel on June 17, 2014 in Basel, Switzerland. Art Basel one of the most prestigious art fair in the world, which runs until the 22nd of June 2014 will showcase the work of more than 4,000 artists selected by 300 leading galleries. (Photo by Harold Cunningham/Getty Images)
Over 92,000 people flocked to Art Basel, a top international contemporary art fair, to see works by the likes of Damien Hirst and Jeff Koons.
June 17, 2014 -- Updated 0941 GMT (1741 HKT)
CNN bring you the latest from the Olympics of architecture, this year directed by the Pritzker Prize-winning architect Rem Koolhaas.
June 18, 2014 -- Updated 1130 GMT (1930 HKT)
After years of research art experts and scientists have found a painting hidden underneath Picasso's 1901 masterpiece "The Blue Room."
June 10, 2014 -- Updated 1654 GMT (0054 HKT)
A convoy of the world's most luxurious supercars drives from England to the Monaco Grand Prix, causing a stir along the way.
June 10, 2014 -- Updated 1654 GMT (0054 HKT)
This is what happens when seven world-class architects design bus stops in a tiny Austrian village.
June 3, 2014 -- Updated 1120 GMT (1920 HKT)
A new exhibition in New York shows that when it comes to the art of origami, it takes a lot more than just folding paper.
May 26, 2014 -- Updated 0607 GMT (1407 HKT)
Vivid Sydney, a festival of light, music, and ideas, sets the sails of the iconic Sydney Opera House alight.
May 23, 2014 -- Updated 1321 GMT (2121 HKT)
Atlanta's High Museum of Art is showcasing 17 visionary concept cars worth millions.
May 12, 2014 -- Updated 2122 GMT (0522 HKT)
Flamboyant gowns, sparkling jewels and A-list celebrities.
May 19, 2014 -- Updated 1543 GMT (2343 HKT)
Wealthy Asian collectors propel sales sky-high at the annual art extravaganza.
May 16, 2014 -- Updated 1144 GMT (1944 HKT)
The Christian Dior Museum in Granville is showcasing the designer's glamorous gowns captured through the lenses of iconic photographers.
May 13, 2014 -- Updated 0502 GMT (1302 HKT)
Proving once again that anything goes in China when it comes to design, the country's latest hotels are nothing short of incredible.
ADVERTISEMENT