This November, Sotheby’s will offer a unique masterpiece of high jewellery: a stunning necklace by Adler Joailliers, conceived and created expressly for ‘The Blue Lagoon’, the largest, top-quality Paraiba tourmaline ever to be offered at auction. At an outstanding 93.94 cts, this treasure of nature dazzles at the heart of the bespoke necklace to be offered as a star lot in the Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels sale in Geneva on 8 November (estimate 1.3 – 2.5 million CHF / 1.4-2.7 million USD). The auction part of Sotheby’s Luxury Week, a twice-yearly seasonal series staged in Hong Kong, New York and Geneva, offering the most extraordinary lots across jewellery, watches, handbags and accessories and more.
First discovered in Brazil in the 1980’s, Paraiba tourmalines have become one of the most highly sought-after gemstones in the world, frequently commanding prices that far surpass those paid for fine sapphires, rubies and emeralds. Top-quality Paraiba tourmalines are distinguished by an extraordinary electric blue hue, but specimens possessing this distinctive colour are typically small and possess a significant degree of internal imperfections.
Here, the “Blue Lagoon” stands alone. Its impressive size, superlative clarity, and enchanting turquoise colour—all achieved without the aid of heat treatment—bring to mind the crystalline waters of a tropical paradise.
To amplify the stones evocative nature, Adler has meticulously crafted a waterfall of shimmering round, marquise- and pear-shaped diamonds weighing over 76 carats. It is a design that is sophisticated in its simplicity, or what the family-owned firm calls “classic with a twist”.
“The Blue Lagoon” necklace epitomizes Adler’s signature high jewellery, a mix of exquisite craftsmanship and purity of style. The Paraiba tourmaline is accompanied by a Bellerophon report brochure and a SSEF report, the latter with an appendix attesting to its exceptional size and quality. The necklace is additionally offered with the original sketch by Adler for its design and GIA reports for a selection of the diamonds.
A Mozambican Treasure
A natural tourmaline of such size and quality is exceedingly rare. This magnificent tourmaline, hailing from Mozambique, exhibits natural clarity and colour, without heat modification.
Cuprian (copper-bearing) tourmalines were first sourced in Brazil; the term “Paraiba” comes from the name of the area where the vividly coloured tourmalines were first mined. More recently, Mozambique has emerged as the world’s most productive country for Cuprian tourmalines, including the “Paraiba” varieties, a term now applied to exclusively to the greenish-blue specimens of vivid to deep saturation, regardless of where they are mined. Over the past two decades, Mozambique has emerged as one of the leading source for top-quality coloured stones.
On June 8, 2023, Sotheby’s New York sold the Estrela de FURA ruby for an astonishing USD 34.8 million. Weighing 55.22 carats, the stone presently holds the world record price for any ruby sold at auction.