MOSCOW – The most-expensive diamond ever polished in Russia will be shown in Moscow as part of a collection of gems named after the dynasties of the Romanov-era Imperial Court.
In 2015, Alrosa discovered a giant, 179-ct rough diamond in a mine in the northeast region of Sakha, naming it Romanov after the family that ruled for more than 300 years before the Russian Revolution.
The diamond was cut and polished into five smaller gems, with the largest one called Dynasty and weighing 51.4 ct. Alrosa named the other gems after noble families of the imperial era: Sheremetyev, Orlov, Vorontsov and Usupov. The company plans to start sales of polished gems online, starting with this collection, Alrosa director of diamonds Pavel Vinikhin told reporters on Tuesday.
“The diamonds of the collection are named after the dynasties that played an important role in the development of Russian jewelry business,” Alrosa said in a statement. The Dynasty is the most valuable diamond with the best clarity characteristics ever cut in Russia, the company said.
Alrosa showed the diamonds at a press event on Tuesday. The collection will be shown to potential buyers starting from September in Israel, the US, Hong Kong and Russia, CEO Sergey Ivanov said. Alrosa plans to auction the diamonds as a set in November and will seek at least $10-million, he said.
The show is a rarity for Alrosa, which specialises in digging up rough diamonds, but not polishing them. Ivanov, who took the job this year, has batted away worries that the company would move into the polishing business. He said in July that he’s not planning any dramatic shift in strategy.
Alrosa will seek to increase revenue from its polishing unit and will try to polish the best stones it mines itself rather than selling them in rough form, Ivanov said.