The Blue Empress is a blue pear-shaped diamond. At the time of its anticipated sale in 2003 it was believed to be the most expensive diamond ever offered for purchase in Europe.
The Blue Empress diamond is a pear-shaped, rare blue diamond, weighing 14 carats. The colour and clarity grade of the diamond are unknown although the appellation “empress” suggests exceptional quality.
It forms part of a necklace valued in 2003 at around £10 million. The necklace is made from 18K white gold with smaller white diamonds surrounding the Blue Empress.
The diamond was first unveiled in November 2003 and is believed to originate from the De Beers diamond mines of Transvaal, South Africa.
Swiss diamond cutters the Steinmetz Group are believed to have bought the diamond from De Beers.
The Blue Empress was crafted by Witrol Matis, responsible for the 203 carat Millennium Star.
In November 2003 the diamond was put up for sale by the Steinmetz Group. It was reported at the time that a number of bids were expected for the diamond.
The Steinmetz Group confirmed that a bid had been received for $9 million. David Beckham was believed to be among the potential purchasers.
The diamond was kept under 24-hour surveillance at Harrods in London while offers were taken until December 23rd 2003.
A spokeswoman for the Steinmetz Group said: "Coloured diamonds are very rare but blue diamonds are even more so. It would certainly make an incredible Christmas present but it could also be bought by a businessman as an investment or by a diamond collector."
It is not known who, if anyone, acquired the diamond or its current whereabouts.
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