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Top 10 Most Expensive Rubies of All Time

Top 10 Most Expensive Rubies of All Time

Rubies are the most expensive birthstones, with some selling for more than $1 million per carat! But, you may be wondering, what are the most valuable rubies, and what makes them so incredibly costly?

The most expensive ruby of all time is the Neelanjali Star Ruby. This extremely rare and unique oval-shaped ruby features a double star, which means it has two start-shaped internal formations. Though it’s not the largest ruby in the world, its $100 million value makes it distinctly valuable.

This ranking will reveal which crimson gemstones have fetched the highest prices and valuations, helping you select and learn more about the world’s priciest rubies.

Here Are the Top 10 Most Expensive Rubies of All Time:

  1. The Neelanjali Star Ruby – $100 million
  2. Sunrise Ruby – $30.42 million
  3. The Crimson Flame – $18.296 million
  4. Verdura Jubilee Ruby Ring – $14.165 million
  5. Oval-Cut Ruby and Diamond Ring – $12.977 million
  6. Etcetera Ruby and Diamond Necklace – $12.941 million
  7. Mogok Ruby and Diamond Ring – $11.721 million
  8. Ruby and Diamond Ear Pendants – $11.552 million
  9. Red Emperor Necklace – $9.981 million
  10. Cartier Ruby Ring – $7.644 million

10. Cartier Ruby Ring – $7.644 Million

photo source: Sotheby’s

As you’ll soon see, most of the world’s costliest rubies are set into intricate rings and necklaces. The Cartier Ruby Ring is no exception, and it kicks off our ranking with an estimated maximum auction price of $7.644 million!

Though this ring is far more subtle than comparable ruby-and-diamond pieces, its understated design makes it ideal for those who enjoy a more sophisticated approach to jewelry.

Why It’s Expensive

Cartier has created a litany of high-priced jewelry items over the last century or so, and this ring is just one of many pieces to sell for millions. But apart from brand recognition and reputation, the primary reason this ring is so valuable is its 29-carat ruby from Burmese (Mogok) origin. High-quality Burmese rubies larger than 20 carats are exceedingly rare.

9. Red Emperor Necklace – $9.981 Million

photo source: Sotheby’s

When the Red Emperor Necklace went to auction in 2018, it had a maximum estimated value of $9.981 million. That’s enough money to buy yourself a sizeable Hollywood mansion!

But this necklace’s twin rows of rubies (the innermost of which are shaped like hearts) are far more romantic than a home in the hills. Hopefully, the lucky buyer of this necklace will turn these high-priced rubies and diamonds into an unforgettable anniversary or wedding gift.

Why It’s Expensive

Though the heart-cut rubies might seem a little juvenile to some buyers, this necklace’s extravagance is undeniable. If broken down into separate materials, the Red Emperor Necklace would likely still cost millions thanks to its many diamonds and rubies.

8. Ruby and Diamond Ear Pendants – $11.552 Million

photo source: Christie’s

Have you ever wanted to show off a pair of expensive ruby earrings? If so, the Ruby and Diamond Ear Pendants might be a dream come true!

Set in a combination of platinum and gold (both of which are extremely valuable precious metals), this pair of dangling earrings are sure to draw the eyes of admirers and envious onlookers. Each one gleams beautifully and features rare pigeon blood rubies.

The only catch? These twin ruby ear pendants sold for $11.552 million at a Christie’s auction in 2016, so making them yours might take some investigative work.

Why It’s Expensive

These earrings might be the costliest ruby-and-diamond earrings in the world, and the materials used to create them are entirely to blame.

7. Mogok Ruby and Diamond Ring – $11.721 Million

photo source: Sotheby’s

For the uninitiated, Mogok is a town in Myanmar (Burma). Rubies from this location are some of the priciest in the world, and for a good reason!

Though controversial in their own right, Burmese rubies are beloved for their quality, coloration, and size. While this ruby ring’s centerpiece might not be quite as bright in hue as other Mogok rubies, it has a garnet-like hue that lends it an enigmatic and alluring air.

Coupled with the diamonds set about the long cushion-cut ruby, this ring is a shimmering treasure worthy of only the finest fingers. But if you’re hoping to make the Mogok Ruby and Diamond Ring yours, you might be disappointed.

After all, this piece had a price realized of $11.721 million when it sold at auction in 2018. That might be a little rich for some buyers.

Why It’s Expensive

This ruby ring’s value comes down to the type of gems it features (primarily a sizeable Burmese ruby and several diamonds), as well as its decadent gold accents. These precious materials are expensive on their own, so combining them results in a pricey piece that’s well deserving of its higher-than-average price tag.

6. Etcetera Ruby and Diamond Necklace – $12.941 Million

photo source: Christie’s

Though this necklace’s $12.941 million auction price precludes it from being one of the most expensive necklaces in the world, its abundance of high-quality rubies makes it a top-tier choice for anyone looking to own some of the world’s most expensive gemstones.

While the Etcetera Ruby and Diamond Necklace might be a controversial choice (after all, it’s made of several rubies instead of one), it’s almost impossible to find a more stunning—and expensive—ruby necklace.

Why It’s Expensive

There’s a laundry list of reasons this ruby and diamond necklace sold for almost $13 million when it went to auction in 2015.

But perhaps the most crucial reason this necklace is so costly is its luxurious materials. After all, this ruby necklace features more than two dozen stunning pigeon blood rubies, all supported by a web of diamonds and glittering white gold.

If you’re unfamiliar with rubies and varying ruby qualities markers, here’s a quick tip—Pigeon blood rubies are the most sought-after of the bunch. As such, the fact that this necklace is chock-full of them makes it inherently valuable.

5. Oval-Cut Ruby and Diamond Ring – $12.977 Million

photo source: Christie’s

You may have noticed that several of the most expensive rubies are the central focal point of a jewelry piece, such as a ring. Additionally, you might have picked up on the fact that ruby rings, particularly those that sell for top-dollar prices, tend to feature other gems, particularly diamonds.

And while the Oval-Cut Ruby and Diamond Ring isn’t the costliest of these pieces, it did sell for a jaw-dropping $12.977 million at a Christie’s auction in 2017. Consequently, it’s easily one of the world’s most valuable ruby jewelry items!

Why It’s Expensive

From the gold band to the 15-carat ruby, there isn’t a single aspect of this ring that doesn’t scream excellence, luxury, and wealth. In short, its high-quality materials are what guarantee its incredible value.

4. Verdura Jubilee Ruby Ring – $14.165 Million

photo source: Christie’s

When examining the Verdura Jubilee Ruby Ring’s profile, one of the first things you might notice is how the ring’s gemstones resemble a glittering crown. This design is no accident.

Its regal style reflects its crown jewel-quality stones and precious metals. The ruby set into the middle of this ring is particularly noteworthy, featuring a multi-faceted face that seems to catch and release light, changing its shade as the wearer moves from room to room.

But the “halo” of thick diamonds surrounding and supporting the ruby is equally stunning, resulting in a $14.165 million piece that would look at home in any monarch’s jewelry case.

Why It’s Expensive

Though this ring was never owned by a member of any royal family, its lavish design and extravagantly expensive materials make it far more valuable than the average loose ruby or ruby ring.

3. The Crimson Flame – $18.296 Million

photo source: Christie’s

You know something is expensive when it has an official name or title. The Crimson Flame, a flower-shaped ruby-and-diamond ring, is a fantastic example.

This sparkling masterpiece features a central 15-carat Burmese ruby surrounded by petal-like diamonds, all set in an exquisitely crafted gold band. The decadent aesthetic of this ring, in addition to its precious materials, helped it sell for an impressive $18.296 million in 2015.

Why It’s Expensive

Burmese rubies are highly prized, especially among the world’s elite. That’s because the quality and brilliance of these jewels are unsurpassed!

So, when you pair a gigantic Burmese pigeon blood ruby with a glittering array of diamonds, you’re sure to end up with a valuable piece of jewelry that appeals to the world’s top buyers. That’s certainly the case with the Crimson Flame.

2. Sunrise Ruby – $30.42 Million

photo source: Sotheby’s

Cartier is well known for producing many of the world’s most expensive watches and jewelry items. But when this luxury brand got its hands on the Sunrise Ruby, one of the most prized pigeon blood rubies ever discovered, it made history.

After all, the Cartier Sunrise Ruby ring is the most expensive ruby item ever sold at auction, fetching a massive $30.42 million in 2015.

But considering the generous size of the stone in question (and the two diamonds that flank it), it’s not hard to understand why this ring is so valuable.

Why It’s Expensive

This ruby-and-diamond ring outclasses all others in terms of quality, branding, and brilliance. The ruby itself seems to glow with an unnatural warmth delicately brightened by the two diamonds fitted beside it.

Still, anyone fortunate enough to wear this ring might need to wear a wrist brace afterward, as the ruby alone is a whopping 25.59 carats!

The Sunrise Ruby is officially the most expensive ruby ever sold at auction. That said, it’s technically not the most valuable ruby in the world!

1. The Neelanjali Star Ruby – $100 Million

photo source: The Joue

The most expensive ruby of all time is the Neelanjali Star Ruby, a distinct oval-shaped stone owned by collector G. Vidyaraj. This gemstone has a purported value of $100 million and is the largest double-star ruby in the world!

However, the Neelanjali Star’s position at the top of this ranking isn’t entirely certain.

That’s because some rubies, like the 125West Ruby (the world’s largest ruby) and the other high-quality rubies owned by Vidyaraj, don’t have confirmed prices or listed values. If reputable gemologists ever evaluate these other stones, the Neelanjali Star could lose its current number-one position.

That said, there are a few reasons to believe the double-star Neelanjali Ruby could remain the costliest ruby for quite some time.

Why It’s Expensive

The primary reason why this spectacular ruby is so expensive is that it’s one-of-a-kind. While there are other double-star rubies, none are as large and brilliant as the Neelanjali Star.

It’s also worth noting that this ruby is part of a private collection, making it an exclusive acquisition only available to the world’s wealthiest investors. In short, you likely won’t find this ruby entering a public auction any time soon!

So, while the Neelanjali Star might not be accentuated by precious metals or diamonds, it’s a true treasure thanks to its size, clarity, unique features, and rarity.

What Makes Some Rubies So Expensive?

Now that we’ve revealed the most expensive rubies of all time let’s take a moment to discuss why some rubies cost millions while others sell for hundreds.

After all, if you’re hoping to start amassing a top-tier collection of these gorgeous red gemstones, you’ll want to ensure you’re selecting the best of the best.

Several of the costliest rubies in the world share a few common qualities, including:

  • Large Size
  • Exceptional Quality
  • Luxurious Additional Materials

Large Size

What do high-priced rubies and the most expensive RVs have in common? Well, the larger they are, the more valuable they tend to be!

The largest double-star ruby in the world, the Neelanjali Star, is a fantastic example. Valued at $100 million, this ruby’s value far exceeds that of smaller rubies with similar characteristics.

But why are larger rubies almost always pricier than smaller ones? The answer comes down to potential.

The larger the ruby, the more potential cuts you can create from it! So, a single hunk of ruby that weighs several pounds can potentially transform into dozens (if not hundreds) of high-quality cut stones.

Even better, some investors are happy to pay top dollar to own the largest uncut or cut-and-polished gemstones. So even if a huge ruby’s full “potential” is never realized, it can still sell for millions if it finds the right buyer.

Exceptional Quality

The world’s largest ruby is an uncut behemoth, and its value isn’t clear. That’s because the true value of a ruby is only evident after it has been cut and polished, and the priciest of the bunch are called “pigeon blood” rubies due to their exquisitely vibrant red-violet hues.

These rubies also tend to exhibit an above-average level of clarity, allowing them to sparkle more brilliantly when exposed to light.

Rubies that are cloudy, unusually colored, or have a lower-than-average level of luminosity aren’t as prized. They’re typically far more affordable than pigeon blood examples with desirable characteristics.

That said, size and quality aren’t the only factors influencing a ruby’s value! The additional materials surrounding a ruby, such as precious metals and jewels, can also significantly impact the price.

Luxurious Additional Materials

Several of the most expensive rubies aren’t uncut, unpolished gems. Instead, nearly all are sparkling additions to high-quality jewelry like rings, bracelets, and necklaces.

Because these red gems are part of exquisite accessories, many of which also feature precious metals and diamonds, determining their individual values is challenging.

Adding gold, silver, or other precious gemstones to an already high-priced ruby will only increase its value. Additionally, cut and polished gems typically fetch higher prices than raw ones.

So, if you’re looking to invest in a high-value ruby, you might want to purchase one set in a gold frame, polished to perfection, or surrounded by other precious stones.

What’s the Most Expensive Ruby of All Time?

The most expensive ruby in the world is the Neelanjali Star. This gem is valued at $100 million and features a notable criss-cross of star formations, something rarely (if ever) seen with other high-quality pigeon blood rubies.

In fact, this particular jewel has the honor of being the largest double-star ruby in the world! Though the Neelanjali Star is one of several high-value rubies owned by collector G. Vidyaraj, it’s one of the few to enjoy multi-form analysis and verification.

Check out these related articles to learn more about the most expensive natural items!