Chinese bowl fetches record price in Hong Kong

A rare red "lotus bowl" from the Chinese emperor Kangxi period of 1662-1722 has been sold for an eye-popping $9.5 million at a Hong Kong sale, auction house Sotheby's said.

The price set a new world record for any Chinese porcelain from the Kangxi period during the Qing dynasty after it was bought by a Hong Kong ceramics dealer for HK$74 million ($9.5 million) Monday, Sotheby's said in a statement.

The ruby-ground "falangcai" bowl decorated with pink, yellow and blue lotuses was originally expected to fetch HK$70 million at the sale, part of Sotheby's six-day spring sale in the southern Chinese city that concluded on Monday.

The auctioneer said the bowl broke a previous Qing Kangxi porcelain record in 2006, when a blue and white "Dragon" vase was sold for HK$22.52 million.

Hong Kong has emerged as one of the world's major auction hubs in art and wine thanks to cash-rich mainland Chinese buyers who have a growing appetite for luxury items amid the country's economic boom.

A flower-shaped Chinese porcelain bowl from the Northern Song dynasty (960-1127) fetched nearly $27 million at a Hong Kong auction last year.

A 28.86-carat round white diamond meanwhile was sold for HK$53.88 million, or HK$1.87 million ($239,352) for each carat, setting a new per-carat auction record price for its category, Sotheby's said in a separate statement.

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