Blue Sapphires: Which are the most beautiful?

September 12, 2019

Radiant Cut Untreated Sapphire from Sri Lanka - Photo Courtesy of Wiener Edelstein Zentrum

Radiant Cut Untreated Sapphire from Sri Lanka - Photo Courtesy of Wiener Edelstein Zentrum

 

Blue sapphires can be found in many places around the world, including but not limited to India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Australia. Depending on what region the blue sapphire comes from, it can have a more appealing appearance than sapphires from other places. There are specific areas in these countries that produce what is considered to be the most beautiful and desired blue sapphires.

India

The locality considered to produce the finest blue sapphires in the world is Kashmir, India. These amazing stones are mined at 16,500 feet in the Zaskar region. Kashmir blue sapphires are known to have a velvety or sleepy quality that is very desirable. Most experts would consider these gemstones to be the benchmark of both color and overall quality for blue sapphires.

3.03-ct Kashmir sapphire. Photo Courtesy of Tino Hammid ©1986

3.03 Carat Kashmir Sapphire - Photo Courtesy of Tino Hammid 

 

Myanmar

Another country where fine blue sapphires have been mined is Myanmar. The material sourced from there approaches the quality of the gemstones found in Kashmir. Many collectors would consider this material second in preference only to Kashmir sapphires. These stones are between 50% and 100% more valued than stones from Sri Lanka or Madagascar.

Fine Blue Sapphire From Myanmar

Fine Blue Sapphire From Myanmar

 

Sri Lanka, Montana, Madagascar

With many other places producing fine material, it would be hard to select the source with the third most beautiful blue sapphires. Most gemologists would nominate Sri Lanka while others might suggest Montana or Madagascar. Blue Sapphires from Sri Lanka are known as “Ceylon” sapphires.

2.21 Carats Sri Lankan Ceylon Sapphire

2.21 Carats Sri Lankan Ceylon Sapphire

 

The sapphires from Montana’s Yogo Gulch in the United States have an unusual and attractive color of blue that leans into the teal color range. Some describe it as a steely blue.

2.00 Carats Montana Sapphire

2.00 Carats Montana Sapphire

 

Stones from Madagascar are extremely beautiful as well. Some experts might say they are arguably as beautiful as stones from Sri Lanka and will continue to become a very important source for quality sapphire jewelry. Not only do stones from Sri Lanka and Madagascar look very similar, they are also priced similarly.

Unheated Madagascar Sapphire

Unheated Madagascar Sapphire

 

Thailand and Australia

Blue sapphires from Thailand and Australia are darker in tone and generally less desirable to advanced collectors. Currently, a large percentage of sapphires that come to market are from these two places.

Blue Sapphire from Thailand

Blue Sapphire from Thailand
Blue Sapphire from Australia
Blue Sapphire from Australia



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