Shattering Records: The ASHOKA® Diamond's Unprecedented Sale
A new pinnacle in the world of luxury diamonds was reached at Christie's Magnificent Jewels Auction in Hong Kong on May 27, 2023. An ASHOKA® diamond, a symbol of exclusivity and beauty, set a world record for its sale.
The centerpiece of this record-breaking sale was a 21.75 carat D Internally Flawless Type IIA ASHOKA® cut diamond ring. The ring, a masterpiece designed by Mitsuo Kaji, one of Japan's most esteemed jewelry designers, fetched a staggering $3,928,403. Kaji's designs are renowned for their harmonious blend of antique and modern aesthetics, and this ring was no exception.
The ASHOKA® diamond was cut by the master cutters at William Goldberg. The elongated design of the ASHOKA® cut requires an extra-long rough diamond, a rarity in the market. This scarcity adds to the allure of the ASHOKA® cut, making it a coveted piece among diamond connoisseurs.
François Curiel, Chairman of Luxury at Christie’s, reflected on the significance of this sale:
The ASHOKA® Diamond: A Legacy of Artistry and Exclusivity
The ASHOKA® diamond's appeal is not just in its unique cut and rarity. Its origin story adds to its mystique. The inspiration for the ASHOKA® cut came from a legendary diamond discovered in India. The original 41.37 carat diamond, cut by an unknown artist of extraordinary skill, was named after Ashoka Maurya, a third-century B.C. Buddhist warrior-emperor.
Over the centuries, this remarkable diamond has passed through the hands of royalty, celebrities, connoisseurs, and collectors. It was once owned by Harry Winston, the famed American jeweler, and later by María Félix, the Mexican actress known for her extensive jewelry collection. The diamond was last seen in public in 1988 at Sotheby’s precious gems auction in St. Moritz. Saul Goldberg and his wife Dale attended the auction where it was ultimately sold to an anonymous buyer for $3,850,000 — a record price at the time.
In essence, the ASHOKA® diamond is not just a stone. It is a symbol of artistry, exclusivity, and enduring value. It is a reflection of the vision of diamantaires like William Goldberg and the passion of those who continue to uphold this legacy. The record-breaking sale at Christie's is a testament to the enduring allure of the ASHOKA® diamond, a gem that continues to captivate the world of luxury diamonds.