170-Carat Pink Diamond Found and It’s the Largest in 300 Years
According to Australian miner Lucapa Diamond Company, the Lulo Rose may be the largest pink diamond found in 300 years.
Pink diamonds are rare as it is, but a big pink diamond? Even rarer.
A 170-carat pink diamond was discovered in Angola, Africa. This, according to Australian miner Lucapa Diamond Company, may be the largest gemstone found in 300 years. Furthermore, Stephen Wetherall, managing director of the Lucapa Diamond Company, adds that only one in 10,000 diamonds found are colored. Truly a standout gem!
“Only one in every 100 diamonds is greater than 10.8 carats in size, so recovering a 170-carat pink diamond means we are dealing with an extremely rare article,” Wetherall tells CNN.
Diamond in the Rough
Dubbed “Lulo Rose,” this rough was found at the Lulo alluvial diamond mine in the Lunda Norte region. Unlike diamonds which are mined underground, alluvial diamonds are deposits found in river beds, ocean floors, or shorelines. Removed from its primary source, Kimberlite, these rough have eroded millions of years ago, making them more durable.
While Australia’s Argyle mine is known for producing pink diamonds, they too can be found in other mines like Angola. In fact, according to the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), Angola’s mines are one of the world’s top ten producers of diamonds. “We have recovered pink diamonds before, but finding one this size is extremely rare,” he shares.
The 170-carat pink diamond is expected to be auctioned by the Angolan state diamond marketing company, Sodiam. But since the diamond is still being examined and valued, Wetherall cannot share its estimated worth with the public just yet.
Big Bucks, Big Gems
While the Lulo Rose is slightly smaller than the 182-carat Daria-i-Noor diamond—the largest pink diamond in the world, which today is part of the Iranian National Jewels—it is still a historic moment in its own right.
“The record and spectacular pink diamond [Lulo Rose] recovered from Lulo continues to showcase Angola as an important player on the world stage for diamond mining and demonstrates the potential and rewards for commitment and investment in our growing diamond mining industry,” says Diamantino Azevedo, Angola’s minister of mineral resources, petroleum and gas.
Since 2015, the Lulo mining project has uncovered 27 diamonds weighing more than 100 carats. This includes the largest diamond ever found in Angola—the 404-carat “4th February Stone,” which sold for $16 million (around PHP 882 million) in 2016.
Prior to its discovery, many large colored diamonds have fetched record-high prices in auctions. Last April, a 15.10-carat step-cut diamond—”The De Beers’ Cullinan Blue”—sold for $57.5 million (around PHP 3.17 billion) at an auction by Sotheby’s in Hong Kong. It beat the record set by the 14.62-carat vivid blue, emerald cut diamond called “Oppenheimer Blue,” which sold for $50.6 million (around PHP 2.79 billion) in a phone bidding at Christie’s auction house in Geneva, Switzerland last 2016.