Whether it was auctions, tenders, pink diamond jewellery or pink diamond mining operations, one thing became very clear this year; pink diamonds dominated the news in 2021. Images: Sams Group Australia
As each year ends, Jeweller reviews our editorial over the past 12 months, analysing the most popular content, and examines industry trends in an attempt to anticipate the coming year.
One thing became very clear; pink diamonds dominated the news in 2021. Whether it was auctions, tenders, pink diamond jewellery or pink diamond mining operations, it seemed as if a week didn’t go by without something ‘pink’ to report.
So, to end the year, Jeweller gives you 12 of the Best of Pink.
The news started early when John Glajz, a Singapore-based Argyle Pink Diamond Authorised partner and regional ambassador for the Natural Color Diamond Association, created a second limited-edition curated collection of 1,000 Argyle pink diamonds, following the success of the original 2017 collection.
Another collection made the news when precious-metal refiner The Perth Mint released ‘The Jewelled Range’, a limited-edition of Argyle pink diamond coins. The newest edition pink diamond coin was The Jewelled Horse, following on from 2020’s The Jewelled Tiger, 2019’s The Jewelled Dragon, and 2018’s The Jewelled Phoenix.
After securing a number of prized pink diamonds in the 2020 Argyle Tender, fancy colour diamond supplier Kunming Diamonds announced it had acquired the ‘Petite Suites’. The stones were introduced as part of last year’s Argyle Tender – the final tender of polished material from the iconic mine – which was themed.
In May Rio Tinto revealed its final Argyle Tender of pink, red, and blue diamonds with 70 stones weighing 81.63 carats being offered and which included a record number of diamonds above 1 carat. It was also among the largest Tenders in Argyle history, equaling the 2012 Tender and second only to the 1987 Tender, which featured 83 stones.
Christie’s recorded several outstanding results in its ‘Magnificent Jewels’ sale in June, including the Sakura Diamond, which became the largest purple-pink flawless diamond ever sold at auction.The 15.81-carat fancy vivid stone was sold to a telephone bidder for $AU37.7 million.
Lucara Diamond Company announced the discovery of a 62.70-carat fancy pink diamond at its Karowe Diamond Mine – the largest pink diamond ever unearthed in Botswana and one of the largest rough pinks on record. Several other large pink diamonds were unearthed, a 22.21, 11.17, and 5.05-carat stones.
Perhaps as a sign that 2021 was The Year of the Pink Diamond, the Australian Pink Diamond Exchange was launched. The platform facilitates buying and selling of certified Argyle stones. Users are able to browse r pink diamonds as well as sell them. All stones undergo an authenticity check prior to listing.
Rio Tinto’s conducted its final diamond tender and which included ‘Once in a blue moon’, as well as a pink diamond tender consisting of 70 rare pink and red stones. The collection, titled The Journey Beyond, was a historical collection mined at Argyle in the final year of its operation.
A 5.38-carat rare vivid orange-pink diamond for $US2.67 million was sold at the ‘Magnificent Jewels’ auction by Christie’s in December. The ‘top’ lot was a 70.19-carat yellow diamond pendant that sold for $US2.85 million. An 8.74-carat dark grey-blue “internally flawless” diamond ring sold for $US2.6 million.
In some good news to end another year of COVID, there was a discovery of pink diamonds in Finland? Karelian Diamond Resources reported that it had found a pink diamond deposit at its Lahtojoki mine, which the company aims to develop as Europe’s first diamond mine outside Russia.
To end The Year of the Pink Diamond, what better news could there be than an exceptional 32.32-carat pink rough diamond discovered in Tanzania. It was part of the 26,000 carats from the mine’s first tender and which was offered in Antwerp in November. It sold for $US13.8 million ($AU19.06 million).
To wrap it all up, as the era of the Argyle Mine draws to a close, we explored the compelling history and enduring legacy of the world’s premier source of pink diamonds. There is no way to discuss the pink diamond category without the Argyle Mine which produced 90 to 95 per cent of the world’s pink and red diamonds before its closure at the end of 2020.
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