Bonham’s Will Join The Fancy Color Diamond Fray In Hong Kong

The end of the month will be very exciting for diamond and jewelry investors and collectors in Hong Kong. Bonham’s will have its auction on May 27, Phillips auction house will have theirs on May 28, and Christie’s will conclude the month on May 29 with its own auction.

Although Bonham’s generally offers unique jewelry rather than investment pieces, at times they also offer rare diamonds that are suitable for collectors and investors. Of their catalog of goods at their upcoming auction in May, we were able to glean a few pieces of jewelry which would be relevant to diamond investors or collectors. I await with anticipation to see whether the market sees the value that the auction house sees, and whether bidders will still have an appetite for acquiring fancy color diamonds at auction even after the important jewelry auctions in Geneva mere weeks beforehand.

One of the nicest pieces in their catalog is a 1.01 carat Fancy Greenish Blue cushion shaped diamond with VVS2 clarity. It is mounted on a ring and surrounded by pink and colorless diamonds. The diamond is valued at $79k to $100k by Bonham’s.

The 1.01 carat Fancy Greenish Blue VVS2 cushion shaped diamond          Image credit: Bonham’s


A 1.01 carat Fancy Pink-Purple radiant cut diamond with SI1 clarity is being offered to the public as well. It is valued at a final price between $79k to $89k. This ring should meet and exceed the price valuation because of the popularity of this color combination.

The 1.01 carat Fancy Pink-Purple SI1 radiant cut diamond          Image credit: Bonham’s


This 10.03 carat Fancy Brown-Pink VVS1 diamond with excellent polish and symmetry may not be the best investment grade diamond, but it sure is a collector’s item for its clarity, color, and size. It is valued at $390k to $640k. However, such a large spread of value by the auction house is proof that it is difficult to really assess its true value. Only the final buyer will seal its value when the hammer goes down. When a pink diamond has a secondary tone like brown or orange, it can still be attractive to buyers but less so for investment purposes and that is one of the reasons that its value is difficult to truly predict. It is hard to say how in demand a diamond of this size, color and clarity will be for the buyers who will be interested in it. The Asian market it generally known for its pink diamond demand but that is not to say that they will be attracted to a pink diamond with a brown secondary tone.

The 10.03 carat Fancy Brown-Pink VVS1 diamond          Image credit: Bonham’s


The following item is also a fantastic piece to add to a collection. It is a 1.30 carat Fancy Brownish Red diamond. Since it only has a half certificate, it means that the clarity is in the I category, the lowest clarity category that there is. A brownish secondary color is also less desired in red diamonds than purplish, which would have given a value of at least two-three this one’s valuation. We should not be confused by the fact that the main color is red, which is normally a very expensive diamond color as it is the rarest color of all fancy color diamonds. If the diamond had been a pure red, even with an I clarity, it would have been valued significantly higher as well. The diamond comes with a GIA monogram – a book written by the GIA that gives much more details about the diamond from a scientific perspective which is done when an owner wants to add prestige to a diamond. The red diamond is valued between $200k and $380k total, or $154k to $292k per carat. A purplish red in this clarity would be valued at $500k to $1 million per carat.

The 1.30 carat Fancy Brownish Red diamond          Image credit: Bonham’s


A 1.66 carat Fancy Deep Green diamond with a half certificate is being offered for $200k to $380k or $120k to $229k per carat as well. It is set on a heart shaped pendant with pink diamonds and colorless diamonds.

The 1.66 carat Fancy Deep Green diamond          Image credit: Bonham’s


Our last item for discussion is the 1.77 carat Fancy Dark Grey-Blue diamond with SI1 clarity. I hope that no investors get confused by the blue in the diamond’s description. Remember that this diamond has a gray secondary color, and the diamond is dark in tone. It would be a nice piece to add to a collection of diamonds or jewelry, but this is not an investment grade diamond. It is valued between $200k to $380k, or $113k to $215k per carat.

The 1.77 carat Fancy Dark Grey-Blue SI1 diamond          Image credit: Bonham’s


The auction heavily focuses on collectors’ pieces, but that is not to say that there is no investment potential here as well. The market for fancy color diamonds has remained strong and stable throughout the unrest of the global diamond industry, and the prices for true investment diamonds have continued to rise with the intense demand for high quality investment stones. As always, smart investors know when a diamond has true potential and are willing to bid high to add such diamonds to their portfolio. Just like with all investments, it is important to acquire investment diamonds under the guidance of a professional who truly understands not only the investment market but also the diamond market, as it is very easy to fall prey to a misconception about what is a true investment diamond. Got any questions about investing in diamonds, about what happens to diamonds when they are bought by collectors, or about the diamonds and pricing at this auction? Ask us in the comments!

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