Last April, the Okavango Diamond Company (ODC) announced that they recovered a massive, deep-blue diamond with better clarity and purity than the world famous “Hope Diamond.”
Originally discovered as a 41.11-carat rough stone in the ODC’s Orapa mining site, the “Okavango Blue” was given an Oval Brilliant Cut and polished down to 20.46 carats – making it the largest blue diamond ever discovered in Botswana, Africa.
Both the Okavango Blue and the Hope Diamond are classified as Type IIb diamonds, meaning that they contain no detectable nitrogen (which cause an undesirable yellow or brown coloring) and significant levels of boron (which cause a gorgeous blue or blue-gray coloring). While both diamonds are extremely pure, the Okavango Blue earned a clarity grade of VVS2 from the GIA – making it one level higher than the Hope Diamond’s VS1 grade. Of the two, the Hope Diamond is definitely larger, weighing even more than the pre-cut Okavango Blue at 45.5 carats.
In 2016, a 12.03-carat blue diamond sold for more than $25 million at auction, breaking the record for most expensive gem of its kind ever sold. Although the Okavango Blue’s value has not been appraised publically, we wouldn’t be surprised if it becomes the new record holder when it’s auctioned off later this year.