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Following a series of luxury reveals this year, Sotheby's unveiled another rare gem, 'The Golden Canary' — an internally flawless, fancy yellow diamond weighing 303.10 carats, currently on display at the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) until Wednesday.

The stone will then travel to Taipei, Hong Kong and Geneva before arriving in New York for its sale on December 7 as part of the Sotheby's New York Magnificent Jewels sale, reported Arab News.

Sotheby's Dubai set to exhibit $45mn of art, jewellery and watches

The Golden Canary is also the largest flawless or internally flawless diamond ever graded by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA).

Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

“We are excited to continue to celebrate the UAE as the ultimate destination for lovers of luxury, with the global unveiling of a gemstone of such extraordinary calibre alongside a selling exhibition curated by our team here on the ground,” Katia Nounou Boueiz, head of Sotheby’s UAE, was quoted as saying by Arab News.

Valued at about $15 million by Sotheby's, the stone will be offered without a reserve price — that is it will sell for whatever the highest price is on the day, the report added.

The same auction process was carried out for for the Enigma, the 555-carat fancy black diamond Sotheby's sold in February this year.

Black diamond, largest ever cut, sells for £3.2 million

"Regardless of its intrinsic value, it will be sold to whatever the highest bid is on the day. Bidding starts at a princely $1, and we will see what the final result will be," Sophie Stevens, director specialist of jewellery at Sotheby's Dubai, was quoted as saying by The National.

The decision to offer the Golden Canary without a reserve price is very deliberate.

"When people see no reserve, it actually creates fiercely competitive bidding, as people get excited by it, so it actually works in the stone's favour. So we have set an estimate that we think is fair for a stone for such good quality, but with no reserve, we expect to see a lot of activity drawn in by exactly that," she was further quoted as saying.

The stone has an interesting history. The pear-cut stone, discovered in the early 1980s in what is now the Democratic Republic of Congo, was found by a little girl playing in her uncle's backyard, not far from a defunct diamond mining site, according to The National.

Dazzling pink diamond could fetch more than $21mn at auction

The popularity of the gem quickly grew and by 1984, it was on display at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in New York, as the largest rough diamond ever recorded, it further reported.

Because of the size of the diamond, it was cut into 15 separate stones, the largest of which weighed 407.5 carats and was named the Incomparable Diamond, reported The National.

The Golden Canary joins the list of historically important stones that have been exhibited in Dubai.

"We debuted the Enigma in Dubai, and we have had on display the Cullinan De Beers Blue diamond (that later sold for $55.7m), and the Williamson Pink Star, that sold last week for $57.7m, and is now the second most expensive jewel. Also, the Earth Star, which was this golden-orange colour, and was again being offered without reserve. It was revealed here in Dubai and acquired by a buyer in the region."

Pink diamond sells for nearly $58 million in Hong Kong

"With the world at the moment looking a little unsteady in several areas, I think people traditionally look towards tangible assets, so pieces like this are certainly attractive because of that. People always love diamonds."

Looking forward to the attention and footfall it will bring to the region, Stevens further stated:

"It's lovely seeing the response from the market here, because the people who come to see it are very excited by it. We have so many jewellery enthusiasts in Dubai and the UAE, and travelling from the rest of the region to come and see these pieces."

Sotheby’s tips largest blue diamond at auction to fetch $48m


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