Category Archives: DIAMOND HISTORY & INFO

Decadent Diamonds from Sotheby’s Auction House

This spring, Sotheby’s presents the ultimate in coloured diamonds: Apollo and Artemis comprised of a blue diamond weighing 14.54 carats, internally flawless, type IIb, and a pink diamond weighing 16.00 carats, VVS2 clarity, type IIa. The stones are currently mounted as a spectacular pair of earrings, but are being offered separately, on account of their extreme rarity, power and presence. They are, says David Bennett, Worldwide Chairman of Sotheby’s International Jewellery Division, “by far the most important pair of earrings ever offered at auction.”

pink-blue teardrop dimond earrings image www.worldwidediamonds.info

The Apollo and Artemis Diamonds. Exceptional fancy vivid blue diamond. Estimate CHF38,125,000–50,160,000 ($38,000,000–50,000,000). Important fancy intense pink diamond. Estimate CHF12,545,000–18,060,000 ($12,500,000–18,000,000). To be offered in Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels on 16 May in Geneva.

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The CTF Pink Star. Sold for HK$553,037,500 ($71,200,000).

PINK-STAR-DIAMOND IMAGE www.worldwidediamonds.info

On 4 April 2017 in Hong Kong, Sotheby’s set a new auction record for any diamond or jewel when The Pink Star, a 59.60-carat oval fancy vivid pink internally flawless diamond – the largest Internally Flawless, Fancy Vivid Pink diamond that the GIA has ever graded – sold to renowned jeweller Chow Tai Fook, who has renamed the stone the CTF Pink Star. Not only was the price more than double the previous record for a fancy vivid pink diamond, but it was also a new record for any work ever sold at auction in Asia.

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Rare platinum, fancy vivid green diamond and diamond ring. Estimate $1,000,000–1,500,000. To be offered in Magnificent Jewels, Including the Legendary Stotesbury Emerald on 25 April in New York.

rare-platinum-fancy-vivid-green-diamond-and-diamond-ring.image www.worldwidediamonds.info

In the elite world of fancy coloured diamonds, green and red are by far the rarest body colours. The appearance of green in a diamond is caused by millions of years of exposure to a source of natural irradiation in the earth, either among uranium compounds or percolating groundwater, which changes its specific absorption of light. Our upcoming New York sale presents a cut-cornered square mixed-cut Fancy Vivid Green diamond weighing 1.64 carats, flanked by two cut-cornered triangle-shaped diamonds weighing approximately .65 carats.

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Fancy intense purplish pink diamond ring, Piaget. Estimate CHF78,030,000-12,040,000 ($8,000,000-12,000,000). To be offered in Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels on 16 May in Geneva.

Fancy intense purplish pink diamond ring 7.04 carats image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Another exceptional colourful diamond on offer this spring in Geneva, this ring is set with a modified rectangular brilliant-cut fancy intense purplish pink diamond, weighing 7.04 carats, VS1 Clarity, type IIa, between triangular diamond shoulders.

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Extraordinary pair of platinum and diamond earrings. Estimate $4,500,000–5,500,000. To be offered in Magnificent Jewels, Including the Legendary Stotesbury Emerald on 25 April in New York.

diamond earrings feature two square emerald-cut diamonds, weighing 20.29 and 20.02 carats, topped by two smaller square emerald-cut diamonds weighing 1.01 carats each image www.worldwidediamonds.info

These earrings feature two square emerald-cut diamonds, weighing 20.29 and 20.02 carats, topped by two smaller square emerald-cut diamonds weighing 1.01 carats each.

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The Unique Pink. Sold for CHF30,826,000 ($31,561,200).

unique-pink-diamond-Weighing 15.38 carats, the “Unique Pink image www.wordwidediamonds.info

Weighing 15.38 carats, the “Unique Pink” is a Type IIa brilliant cut diamond with unparallelled saturation. Until this April, when Sotheby’s Hong Kong sold the CTF Pink Star, the largest fancy vivid pink diamond ever offered at auction for a record-setting price, the Unique Pink held the world auction record for any fancy vivid pink diamond. It also contributed to the May 2016 Geneva sale of Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels sale becoming the new world record for any jewellery auction.

De Beers Millennium Jewel 4. Sold for HK$248,280,000 ($32,013,223).

De Beers Millennium 10.10 carat blue diamond image www.worldwid3ediamonds.info

To celebrate the Millennium in 2000, De Beers, together with The Steinmetz Group, showcased an exceptional collection of eleven important blue diamonds, the De Beers Millennium Jewels, in a specially designed exhibit at London’s Millennium Dome. Offered for sale from an Asian private collection, this rare and internally flawless 10.10-carat blue diamond is the largest oval-shaped fancy vivid blue diamond ever to appear at auction and was the most expensive diamond ever sold in Hong Kong before the CTF Pink Star in April 2017.

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The Graff Pink. Sold for CHF45,442,500 ($46,158,674).

The Graff Pink diamond 24.78 carats image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Type IIa pink diamonds are very rare in nature, but this fancy intense pink round-cornered rectangular step-cut diamond weighing 24.78 carats, set between shield-shaped diamond shoulders, is a perfect, pure pink colour, which has been graded “fancy intense pink” by the GIA with no secondary colour modifier. Adding to this diamond’s exquisite nature is its classic emerald cut – a style most associated with white diamonds – that is immensely sought-after in rare colours. According to the consignor, the stone had not appeared on the open market since it was first purchased some 65 years ago from Harry Winston himself. In 2010, Laurence Graff bought the diamond and renamed it The Graff Pink.

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Magnificent oval diamond 118.28 carat, D colour, flawless, type IIA. Sold for HK$238,680,000 ($30,782,560).

Magnificent oval diamond 118.28 carat, D colour, flawless, type IIA image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Unearthed in 2011 from the deep mines in Southern Africa, the 299-carat rough of this oval diamond is one of the largest and most beautiful diamond roughs found in recent years. Carefully and meticulously worked over months, the unrefined stone was transformed into a mesmerising 118.28-carat unmounted, brilliant-cut diamond. When sold at Sotheby’s Hong Kong in 2013, it became the world record for any white diamond at auction, as well as the biggest diamond ever sold at auction.

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The Lady Dalal. Sold for CHF11,282,500 ($12,361,558).

The Lady Dalal 110.03 carat yellow diamond image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Polished diamonds over 100 carats of any colour, weak or strong, are rare, which makes this 110.03-carat yellow diamond all the more impressive. The Sun-Drop, the largest known fancy vivid yellow pear-shaped diamond, was unveiled to the world at London’s Natural History Museum where it was exhibited in the famous Vault Gallery in 2011. After being sold at Sotheby’s Geneva the same year, it was renamed The Lady Dalal.

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The Blue Moon of Josephine. Sold for CHF48,634,000 ($48,468,158).

The Blue Moon of Josephine 12.03 carats vivid blue diamond image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Smashing all records, the Blue Moon Diamond, renamed The Blue Moon of Josephine, sold in November 2015 at Sotheby’s Geneva for over $4 million per carat – the world auction price-per-carat record for a diamond or gemstone. “After seeing the stone’s colour and understanding its significance, it was fitting to name it the Blue Moon Diamond,” noted Suzette Gomes, CEO of Cora International. “Not only its shape is reminiscent of a full moon,” she said of the cushion-shaped fancy vivid blue 12.03-carat diamond, “but the metaphor for the expression is exactly what one could say about the occurrence and existence of such a gemstone.”

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A spectacular emerald-cut diamond. Sold for $22,090,000.

emerald-cut diamond 110.20 carat white diamond image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Only six perfect diamonds weighing over 100 carats have sold at auction in the last 25 years. Sotheby’s sold five of those spectacular stones at sales in Geneva, Hong Kong, and New York, where in April 2015, this jaw-dropping 100.20-carat, type IIa diamond was offered. The classic, emerald-cut diamond’s D colour and internally flawless clarity are exceptionally rare at this scale.

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Superb and highly important fancy vivid purple-pink diamond and diamond ring, mounted by Sotheby’s Diamonds. Sold for HK$137,880,000 ($17,778,247).

fancy vivid purple-pink diamond and diamond ring 8.41 carats pear shaped image www.worldwidediamonds.info

This ring centres an 8.41-carat, pear-shaped, type IIa pink diamond, shown here, which is prized not only for its sweet, intensely saturated hue, but also for its internally flawless clarity. With a stylised mount pavé-set throughout with circular-cut diamonds, this jewel sold at Sotheby’s Hong Kong in 2014.

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The Beau Sancy. Sold for CHF9,042,500 ($9,678,188).

The Beau Sancy 34.98 carat double rose cut diamond image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Before this 34.98-carat modified pear double rose-cut diamond sold at Sotheby’s Geneva in 2012, its first royal owner was Marie de Medici, the wealthiest heiress in Europe, who in 1600 married Henri IV, considered the greatest king ever to rule France. Descending from the Medici through her father, Francesco, Grand Duke of Tuscany, who gave her this gem, she was not only rich but very grand. Cut and polished towards the end of the 16th century, the Beau Sancy also exhibits the first attempts to liberate the “fire” inherent in the stone – a property of diamond so admired today

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The Zoe Diamond. Sold for $32,645,000.

zoe diamond magnificent and rare 9.75-carat fancy vivid blue diamond pendant image www.worldwidediamonds.info

In the November 2014 sale of the Collection of Mrs Paul Mellon, collectors eagerly vied for jewellery and objects of vertu that evoked her celebrated style. After 20 minutes of competitive bidding, Mrs Mellon’s magnificent and rare 9.75-carat fancy vivid blue diamond pendant sold for more than double its high estimate, driving the 98%-sold auction total to $218 million. It was renamed The Zoe Diamond.

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Magnificent diamond. Sold for CHF12,597,000 ($14,201,354).

70.33-carat cushion brilliant white diamond image www.wordwidediamonds.info

Introduced at the beginning of the 20th century, the modern cushion-cut derives from ancient cushion-cut diamonds, sometimes referred to as “old mine” cuts. This magnificent 70.33-carat cushion brilliant diamond has not only received the highest colour and clarity grade from the GIA for white diamonds – D colour and flawless clarity – but it also is a type IIa diamond.

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The Graff Vivid Yellow. Sold for CHF14,501,000 ($16,347,847).

The Graff Vivid Yellow 100.09 carat diamond image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Of exceptional beauty and extraordinary fire, this brilliant gem is one of the largest fancy vivid yellow diamonds in the world. It is listed in Ian Balfour’s book Famous Diamonds as one of the few rare yellow diamonds greater than 100 carats. The 100.09-carat brilliant fancy vivid yellow diamond, which can also be detached and worn as a pendant, was sold at Sotheby’s Geneva in 2014.

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‘The Historic Pink’ magnificent fancy vivid pink diamond ring. Sold for CHF14,810,000 ($15,903,422).

'The Historic Pink' magnificent fancy vivid pink diamond ring. 8.72 carats image www.worldwidediamonds.info

This exceptional vivid pink Type IIa diamond, formerly in the collection of American heiress Huguette Clark, was mounted as a ring by Dreicer. Set with a cushion brilliant-cut fancy vivid pink diamond weighing 8.72 carats, this ring sold most recently in 2014 at Sotheby’s Geneva.

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Exceptional pear-shaped diamond. Sold for $14,165,000.

Exceptional pear-shaped white diamond 74.79 carats image www.worldwidediamonds.info

At 74.79 carats, this unmounted type IIa diamond has it all: D colour, VVS1 clarity, and it is potentially internally flawless.

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Henry Sapiecha

History Of Diamonds on video

white-rbc-diamond-black-background-image-www-worldwidediamonds-info

Diamonds are by far the most popular gemstones used in modern jewelry, but do you know where they came from?

Diamonds have been considered to be beautiful and very valuable for a long time. In the 1st century AD, a roman naturalist said that the “diamond is the most valuable, not only of the precious stones, but of all things in the world.”

The international love of diamonds started in India. They were trading diamonds as early as the 4th century BC. Eventually, they started trading to the Europeans, and became very popular among them by the 1400s.

In the 1700s, Brazil became a diamond-mining powerhouse.

The int 1800s, after the French Revolution, western Europe and the US became more wealthy and the demand for diamonds exploded.

By the 1900s, South Africa mined 90% of the world’s diamonds.

Recently, diamonds have been found in Australia and Canada.

Diamonds have truly withstood the test of time and will always be in fashion.

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Henry Sapiecha

India says the famous blue Kohinoor diamond belongs to England

india-says-kohinoor-diamond-belongs-to-britain-image www.worldwidediamonds.info

India’s government has told the country’s top court it won’t try to reclaim the 105-carat Koh-i-Noor diamond, which is now part of the British crown jewels.

Kohinoor, one of the world’s largest diamonds, has been at the centre of a diplomatic row between New Delhi and London, with India arguing for decades that it should get it back.

Kohinoor has been part of the British crown jewels for more than 150 years.But the government headed by Narendra Modi told the Supreme Court on Monday that Kohinoor was neither “forcibly taken nor stolen” by the British during colonial times, BBC reports.

The court said it’d take its time to make a decision as the verdict could “stand in the way” of future attempts to bring back items that once belonged to India.

Kohinoor has been part of the British crown jewels for more than 150 years and today forms part of a crown that was worn by the late mother of Queen Elizabeth, currently on display in the Tower of London,.

For many Indians, returning the diamond would be symbolic of India’s subjugation and a compensation for the excesses of the British during their colonial rule.

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Henry Sapiecha

The world’s largest black diamond can now be seen in Dubai

the-worlds-largest-black-diamond-can-now-be-seen-in-dubai image www.worldwidediamonds.info

The unusual gem is named after the Korloff -Sapojnikoff family, members of the Russian nobility, who once owned it.

Billed as the world’s largest known black diamond, the 88-karat “Karloff Noir” made an appearance at a Dubai Mall last week to promote the reopening of a Karloff Paris boutique, a jewellery group with 50 boutiques worldwide and more than 450 points of sale.

The rarely publicly displayed gem was discovered in Siberia in 1917. It was cut from a 421-carat rough diamond and boasts a deep, rich black opaque colour. Daniel Paillasseur, founder and managing partner of Korloff Paris, purchased the precious stone in 1978 and named it after the royal Russian family, Korloff-Sapojnikoff, which originally owned it.

The Karloff Noir, insured for $37 million, resides in Paris, but Paillasseur told Emirates 24/7 that the reopening of the store in Dubai was more than a good reason to have flown the unusual and famous black diamond, as the country remains one of the best performing markets.

Korloff-noir-Diamond image www.worldwidediamonds.info

This black diamond is believed to bring happiness, luck and prosperity to any person who has the privilege of touching it. It has been brought outside of Paris only on select occasions, for the Sultan of Brunei and the Queen of Malaysia.

Black diamonds are different from other coloured rocks because they do not get their shade from chemical impurities, such as nitrogen, hydrogen or boron. Rather, black diamonds owe their colour to numerous dark inclusions (mostly graphite), and their opaqueness is caused by a “polycrystalline” structure that inhibits the reflection of light.

Images courtesy of Korloff France.

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Henry Sapiecha

Small, ancient diamonds reveal seawater key for precious gems formation

small-ancient-diamonds-reveal-seawater-key-for-precious-gems-formation image www.worldwidediamonds.info

An international team of researchers has revealed that seawater may have played an important role in formation of diamonds hundreds of kilometres underground.

In a paper published Thursday in the journal Nature, scientists from Canada, the U.S. and the U.K suggest diamonds form as a result of plate tectonics carrying seawater into deep parts of the earth.

The team came to such conclusion after they found microscopic, dirty diamonds from the Ekati mine in Canada’s Northwest Territories, home to rich deposits of high and low quality gems.

“Ugly little things”

The diamonds provided to the researchers by Dominion Diamonds aren’t fit for a ring by any stretch of the imagination — they’re far less than a millimetre wide and “fibrous” or cloudy.  Scattered throughout the crystal are droplets of fluid — millions of them, in some cases.

However, the tiny rocks were key to the study. “With the ringwoodite discovery, we showed there is a lot of water trapped in really deep parts of the Earth, which probably all came from recycling ocean water,” Graham Pearson, professor in the University of Alberta’s Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences and Canada Excellence Research Chair in Arctic Resources, said in a statement.

“This new study really highlights that process—it clearly demonstrates that ocean water in this case has been subducted via an old oceanic slab into a slightly shallower but still very deep part of the Earth. From there it has pumped that brine into the bottom of the root beneath the Northwest Territories, and it’s made the diamonds,” Pearson added.

small-ancient-diamonds image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Although high-quality gem diamonds are normally estimated to have been formed three billion to 3.5 billion years ago, these poor-quality, fluid-rich diamonds appear to be just a few hundred million years old—significantly younger in the Earth’s geological timeline.

One theory to explain this age difference is that the two types of diamonds are actually formed by similar processes, and then over time the fluid-rich stones transform into the gem diamonds. Pearson and his team plan to do further studies on the fluids found in these diamonds to test this model.

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Henry Sapiecha

Ancient Diamonds Came From Seawater and Future Diamonds Might Come From The Air

Cloudy diamonds give some scientists new clues to how they formed underground, others find ways to make them out of thin air.clear cluster of diamonds with white bg image www.worldwidediamonds.info

They may not be fit for a ring, but microscopic diamonds found in a mine in Canada’s Northwest Territories could be the key to uncovering how the stones form.

It’s pretty well-known that diamonds are formed when carbon is compressed at extremely high pressure inside the earth’s crust. But while time and pressure are important, the gems still form like other crystals, which need a reactive fluid for grow in. Now, a group of researchers say they have uncovered evidence that points to some kinds of diamonds crystallizing in pockets of seawater trapped about 124 miles below the earth’s surface.

“I think it really helped to get the diamond forming reaction going,” Graham Pearson, a geochemist at the University of Alberta who co-authored the study, tells Emily Chung for CBC News. “We would argue having some seawater and brine helps formation because it’s a very reactive fluid.”

The bold conclusion comes from data taken from 11 microscopic diamonds with millions of droplets of fluid suspended within them. When crystals form rapidly, they can sometimes trap pockets of liquid inside themselves. The liquid is often the same reactive fluid that the crystal grew in, leaving clues as to how the gem was formed. Using an analysis technique called spectroscopy, the scientists scanned the tiny, cloudy diamonds for clues of what chemicals the droplets were made of, Chung writes. What they found was water.

“It’s really diamond formation caught in the act,” Pearson tells Chung.

To get a more detailed chemical analysis, the researchers used lasers to vaporize the diamonds. They discovered that the trapped bubbles of water contained high levels sodium and chlorine – the building blocks of salt – as well as strontium, which is strikingly similar to what would have been found in seawater hundreds of millions of years ago, Chung writes.

Pearson believes that the diamonds may have formed when seawater was pushed under the earth by the movement of tectonic plates, where carbon-rich rocks and high pressure would have made the perfect conditions to grow diamonds. While it’s still unclear how these microscopic, cloudy diamonds are related to the one on your co-worker’s flashy engagement ring, it does give scientists new hints to how water and carbon cycle through the earth.

While some scientists are figuring out how diamonds are made beneath the earth over millions of years, others believe they’ve found a new way to make artificial diamonds out of air pollution. A group of researchers from George Washington University announced at a recent meeting of the American Chemical Society that they have devised a method for extracting raw carbon from the atmosphere, Daniel Cooper writes for Engadget.

In a new study published in the journal Nano Letters, the researchers say they have extracted carbon nanofibers from carbon dioxide through an electrochemical process. Carbon nanofibers are strong and lightweight materials typically used in machinery like cars and airplanes, and could also be refined into artificial diamonds for jewelry and electronics. However, while the nanofibers are versatile, they are extremely expensive to make. By sticking a pair of electrodes in a bath of lithium carbonate and lithium oxide, the researchers say they were able to extract carbon straight out of the atmosphere, which could provide manufacturers with a reservoir of cheap nanofibers.

If this system could be made to work on a large scale, it might not just make carbon nanofibers easier to get, but could help to actively reduce the carbon in the atmosphere and global warming, Mike Orcutt writes for the MIT Technology Review. However, it has a ways to go: not only is the technology still in its infancy, but the current demand for carbon nanofibers is nowhere near what would be necessary to put a dent in carbon dioxide levels.

While diamonds made from the sky might help the environment in the future, jewelers will still have to rely on old-fashioned ground diamonds for now.

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Henry Sapiecha

Scientists reveal diamond bearing rocks more common than originally thought

ROUGH&CUT DIAMOND

A team of Australian scientists have unveiled a ground-breaking study that identifies, for the first time, the exact source of diamond-bearing rocks known as orangeites.

The paper reveals that orangeites —until now believed to be common only to South Africa— may be present in much higher abundance worldwide

Published Monday in the April edition of Nature Communications, the paper reveals that orangeites —until now believed to be common only to South Africa— may be present in much higher abundance worldwide, especially in Australia.

Rough on the outside, these rocks contain not only treasured diamonds but also tiny fragments of mantle and crustal rocks. By using highly sophisticated geochemical and isotopic analytical techniques, the scientists were able to link those fragments to the source of the orangeites, deep in the interior of the planet.

“We found strong evidence that orangeites are sourced from MARID (Mica-Amphibole-Rutile-Ilmenite-Diopside) mantle, which up until recently had only been recognised in South Africa,” leading author, Professor Fiorentini — from The University of Western Australia — said in a statement.  “However, ongoing studies suggest that MARID mantle may occur in other continents, including here in Australia.”

The group also found evidence that suggests orangeites were formed from lava produced by massive volcanic eruptions several tens of millions of years ago. Until now, the common belief was that diamonds were formed about 990 million years ago.

THE TEN LARGEST DIAMONDS IN THE WORLD INFOGRAPHIC DATA SHEET

Most diamonds are rather small, but once in a while a big diamond is found.

The 10 largest diamonds in the world [infographic]

And very rarely the diamond found is so big that it dwarfs almost every single diamond ever found.

These very rare big stones can be cut into some massive cut diamonds, so this Danish site has collected information about the 10 biggest diamonds ever and put all the information together in this infographic.

As you can see, all of the 10 biggest diamonds ever have been found in Africa – and 7 of the 10 in mines in South Africa. The biggest diamond ever found was used to cut the Cullinan I, but the Cullinan I is only the 2nd biggest cut diamond (even though most people think it’s the largest cut diamond in the world).

The biggest cut diamond is the relatively unknown Golden Jubilee. A brown diamond that was found in 1985 in South Africa and now belongs to the royal family of Thailand.

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Henry Sapiecha

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