10 Most Expensive Gemstone Types for the Rich and Famous
By Bluei Fausto
If we were to recourse history, we will come upon many reasons why people are so fascinated with gemstones. From their rarity, ability to refract light, to their rich colors that seem to be enshrouded in mystery, there comes a list of reasons why these stones have been treasured by man for thousands of years.
In the ancient world, gems were worn as amulets to repel bad luck and illness. Romans, in particular, saw them as shards of falling stars, while the Greeks took them as the tears of the gods. To date, the value of gemstones remains astronomical, and people of all ages continue to seek after the rarest of them all.
In this list, we have collected 10 of the most expensive gemstone types in the world, and why bidders from all over the globe are willing to pay the unbelievable just to get their hands on them.
10. Taaffeite – $2,500 per carat
Named after its discoverer, Richard Taaffee, this precious gemstone comes as one of the rarest types ever unearthed. Astonishingly, Taaffeite was first discovered as an already cut and polished stone in 1945. Due to its resemblance with spinel, it was first considered as a spinel gemstone before being identified as a new unidentified mineral.
To date, the scarcity of the gemstone, which is said to be a million times rarer than a diamond, makes it extremely valuable, scoring at $2,500 per carat.
9. Demantoid Garnet – $3,300 per carat
Recognized to be the 9th most valuable gem in the world, Demantoid Garnet exhibits a green color that rivals emerald and a brilliance and dispersion that surpasses diamond. The gemstone was first discovered in Russia in the mid-80s and remains to be among the rarest and most valuable from the garnet family.
Since the stone comes in a small size, it is difficult to look for a Demantoid larger than 10 carats. Given the scarcity, they are often seen in antique jewelry pieces.
To date, the gem is valued at $3,300 per carat.
8. Black Opal – $3,500 per carat
Known to be the rarest and most valuable variety of opal, the Black Opal features a dark body ranging from dark grey to jet black. It often comes with a vibrant, rainbow-hued spectral of colors that make it irresistibly alluring and mysterious to many collectors.
To date, Black Opal can fetch prices up to $3,500 per carat or more.
7. Benitoite – $3,800 per carat
Taking pride in its sapphire-blue hue, the Benitoite is known to be one of the most beautiful gems in the world. It was first discovered in the early 1900s by a mineral inspector who first mistook it as sapphire. Later, the inspector sent a photo of the stone to George D. Louderback, who identified it as a new, unknown mineral.
The stone’s popularity can be linked to its high brilliance and colorless dichroism, which sapphire does not have.
To date, Benitoite is named to be the official gemstone of California and can be purchased at the overwhelming price of $3,800 per carat due to the rarity of the stone.
6. Padparadscha Sapphire – $8,000 per carat
Dubbed to be the world’s rarest sapphire, Padparadscha features the unique blend of pink and orange hues. Its name, pronounced as pad-pah-raj-ah, is used to describe the color of a tropical lotus flower in ancient Sanskrit.
Today, the extreme scarcity of Padparadscha has compelled gem cutters to try their best to conserve as much material as possible; thus, most pieces available in the market are known to have unusual and asymmetrical shapes.
Given its unparallel beauty and rarity, Padparadscha comes with a high price, typically valuing at $8,000 per carat.
5. Red Beryl – $10,000 per carat
Also known by the name Scarlet Emerald, the Red Beryl comes as a rare type of beryl that features a raspberry pink to almost purplish red color. Despite its name, this stone is not a type of emerald, but rather, an entirely different gemstone with its own classifications.
Today, Red Beryl can only be mined in one site, particularly in the Wah Wah Mountains in Utah. The gemstone is so rare that, compared to ruby, another rare stone, Red Beryl is considered to be 8,000 times less.
Due to this scarcity, most cut red beryl stones available in the market weigh under 1 carat. Thus, when a bigger stone is up, it can value up to $10,000 per carat.
4. Alexandrite – $12,000 per carat
While all the other stones mentioned in our list takes pride in their distinct colors, Alexandrite is an extremely rare gemstone known for its enchanting ability to change in color. Because of this, the stone is often called by gem enthusiasts as “emerald by day, ruby by night”.
Scientifically, the stone’s ability to exhibit a green color in sunlight and red in lamplight is a result of chromium traces found in the gemstone.
To date, due to the stone’s alluring color-change ability and scarcity, its average price per carat is valued at $12,000.
3. Jadeite – $20,000 per carat
Recognized to be the purest, rarest, and most vivid variety of jade, this precious stone exhibits a deep green translucent that has long charmed and magnetized many collectors. In fact, the gem was so mystifying that it was used as part of many ancient civilizations’ historical weapons and religious ceremonies.
To date, the value of Jadeite is mostly dependent on the level of transparency and depth of color the piece has. The average price of the stone per carat is valued at $20,000, while other finer pieces could be fetched at the staggering price of over $1 million per carat.
2. Musgravite – $35,000 per carat
Standing as one of the rarest of all gem species, Musgravite serves as the 2nd most expensive gem type in the world. The stone was first discovered in 1967 and is most known for its ability to display vibrant colors of thin-film iridescence when put in a direct source of light.
To date, only 8 known specimens of this stone exist, making it one of the rarest and most valuable gems ever, valuing at $35,000 per carat.
1. Blue Diamond – $3.93 million per carat
No other gem sits on top of the hierarchy than the Blue Diamond. Not only is this gem the hardest to find on earth, but it also takes pride in its unparalleled brilliance that rivals the brightest of the stars. It was so rare that only a few could actually see a piece of it in person.
To date, the Blue Diamond can be fetched at the unbeatable price of $3.93 million per carat, making it the king of the gemstone types.
Surely, it cannot be denied that man’s fascination with all things that glimmer can be traced back to time immemorial. Given the spectacular and beguiling features of gems, it is no wonder that many are still willing to spend much just to get a tiny bit of them.
Which among these 10 most expensive gemstone types charmed you the most?
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