What’s So Special about the Record-Breaking, $25 Million “Cullinan Dream”?
Earlier this month (June 9, 2016) a staggering record was set at Christie’s: the “Cullinan Dream” - the largest and most expensive fancy intense blue diamond ever sold at auction – raked in a record-breaking $25.3 million.
The “Cullinan Dream”, dubbed by Christie’s as “one of the most exquisite diamonds on earth” was unearthed at the Cullinan mine in South Africa in 2014 – a mine that has produced many exceptional stones, among them the historic 3,106.75 carat rough stone discovered there in 1905.
The “Cullinan Dream” weighed 122.52 carats in its rough form. It was cut into a 24.18-carat polished stone, and is the largest Fancy Intense Blue diamond ever offered at auction. But apart from the prestigious mine it came from, and its considerable carat weight, the “Cullinan Dream” is also special because of the combination of its qualities: Most fancy intense blue diamonds weigh less than a single carat, since the grade demands very strong color and full saturation. At a weight of 24.18 carats, the “Cullinan Dream” is remarkable in its purity and consistently strong blue color throughout every one of its facets. Its classification as Type IIb makes it an even rarer find, as Type IIb stones account for less than one-half of 1% of all diamonds found in nature
And the “Cullinan Dream” delivered: headlining the 260 lots on offer at Christie’s New York sale, the rare 24.18-carat cut-cornered rectangular mixed-cut gem, set on a platinum ring flanked with classic baguette-cut diamonds, managed to awe even the most veteran of auction goers. The “Cullinan Dream” is much heavier (10 carats heavier, to be exact) than the 14.62-carat “Oppenheimer Blue,” which sold for a world auction record of $57.5 million and was previously the largest blue diamond ever sold at auction.