Sotheby’s has recently announced the unveiling of the most valuable ruby ever to come to auction.
Named Estrela de FURA 55.22, this exceptional Mozambique gem is the largest and most valuable ruby to ever appear in the market. The gemstone weighs a whopping 55.22 carats, and its unique combination of rich colour saturation, highly crystalline appearance, and incomparable size puts its estimate in excess of $30 million.
The discovery of Estrela de FURA in 2022 was considered historic due to its weight of 101 carats, making it the largest gem-quality ruby ever discovered. Its fluorescence, outstanding clarity, and vivid red hue, known as “pigeon’s blood,” are exceptionally rare, and the stone’s rough state was already considered an exceptional treasure of nature.
Its transformation into a cushion-shaped stone by a team of artisans brought out the vivid red hues due to multiple internal reflections, further increasing its value.
“Already in its rough state, the Estrela de Fura showed its extraordinary quality traits with a potential to become a one-of-a-kind gemstone. The cutter was able to realize this potential and created a faceted ruby with an astounding 55.22 ct weight, displaying a saturated and homogeneous red color, combined with a degree of clarity unseen in any other unheated ruby of comparable size. To see a natural ruby of this size, with such a combination of quality characteristics spared from treatment was considered almost unimaginable. The natural ruby of 55.22 ct is setting a new record not only for Mozambican rubies, but also for rubies in general.”
The Gübelin Gem Lab
Mozambique has a long and rich history of ruby mining, with significant discoveries dating back to the 1960s. However, it was not until the early 2000s that the mining of rubies in Mozambique gained real momentum, with the discovery of the Montepuez ruby deposit in the northern part of the country where the Estrela de FURA rough crystal was originally found. The Montepuez ruby deposit is one of the largest ruby deposits globally, attracting significant interest from international mining companies.
Estrela de FURA 55.22’s new journey commences at Sotheby’s Hong Kong, where it will be exhibited before it embarks on a worldwide tour, with exhibitions scheduled in Taipei, China, Singapore, Geneva, and Dubai.
Its final destination will be the Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels auction in New York on June 8, where it is poised to set a new world record for the most expensive ruby ever sold at auction, surpassing the previous record holder, the Sunrise Ruby.
The appearance of Estrela de FURA 55.22 at auction is a landmark event, as rubies of this importance and magnitude are exceedingly rare.
The unique combination of its colour saturation, crystalline appearance, and incomparable size makes it a true treasure of nature. Its transformation into a cushion-shaped stone further enhances its value, and it is poised to set a new world record at the upcoming Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels auction in New York.