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December 1999

Diamond News

In the Pink

Pinks, reds and even blues were seen at Argyle's diamond tender in New York City

Something about red and pink diamonds makes even the most seasoned diamond aficionados swoon. "It's unbelievable," gushes Alan Friedman, a jewelry manufacturer in Beverly Hills, CA, and former part owner of Borsheim's in Omaha, NE. Friedman was one of a select group to attend Argyle Mine's second pink diamond tender held in the U.S. The tender took place in New York City in September.

Invited Guests Only

The opportunity to bid on these treasures is uncommon. The invitation-only tenders in select cities around the world each year give the select few a chance to see and make offers to buy the rare pink, red and bluish diamonds produced each year at the Argyle Mine in Australia.

In the 15 years the company has held the tenders, it focused on the Far East, Middle East and Europe until last year. "Changing fortunes and Americans' increased interest in diamonds of color have changed all that," says David Fardon, manager of Argyle's polished diamond sales division. "Last year, three Americans were among the successful bidders in the tender. Interest here has reached a new level and includes manufacturers, jewelers and designers."

Exclusive Viewing

The paradoxical thing about the tenders is their size. This year, a mere 51 gems were shown; but that is much to swoon over if you consider the rarefied realm of pink and red diamonds. Highlights of this year's production included a 0.73-ct. emerald-cut red, a 0.59-ct. purplish red, a 1.73-ct. fancy deep purplish pink, many other pinks and even a few diamonds that qualify as blues.

Given that collections like these were not seen before the tenders began, it's likely people will look back at this tender as a turning point in the popularization of pink and red diamonds, say connoisseurs such as Friedman.

Argyle is working hard to increase pinks' popularity through marketing by MVI Marketing Ltd., Beverly Hills, CA. In addition, a more affordable, commercially viable product – pink diamond melee – is being manufactured and sold this year through major manufacturers such as Suna Bros., New York City; Alan Friedman, Beverly Hills, CA; Martin Gruber, Van Nuys, CA; and Kwiat, New York City.

by Robert Weldon, G.G.

David Fardon (left) of Argyle Diamonds shows a pink diamond to Craig Slavens (center) and Alan Friedman of Alan Friedman Inc., Beverly Hills, CA, at the tender in New York City.
Certain diamonds grabbed attention at the tender in New York City, including (from top) a 1.73-ct. radiant fancy deep purplish pink, a 0.59-ct. oval fancy purplish red and a 0.73-ct. emerald-cut fancy red.

Copyright © 1999 by Bond Communications.


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