Treasures of Australia Gold Coins

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The Treasures of Australia are a series of one-of-a-kind specially minted gold bullion coins created by the Perth Mint of Australia to showcase the unique natural treasures that are secret within Australia’s vast landscape. Made of 99.99% pure gold, the Treasures of Australia bullion set features a unique, one-of-a-kind feature unlike any other ever possessed by a gold coin before it. The Treasures of Australia gold bullion series possesses a unique ‘locket’ feature made of durable, clear acrylic which houses a specific mineral or material of value which is endemic to a specific area in Australia where such materials or minerals can be found or mined. The majority of items encased in these unique half-circle ‘lockets’ are precious or semi-precious stones and minerals that have become a large part of Australia’s burgeoning economy.

Minted in an effort to promote the natural riches of the country and initially released in 2007 with the ‘Sapphire’ Treasure of Australia coin, it is now highly sought after by collectors owing to its unique nature and limited mintage. With no other gold bullion coin in the world ever imitating (thus far) the stylized ‘view window’ (as collectors call it) that house the minerals (be it sapphires, opals, diamonds, pearls or gold) that can be found in Australia’s rich environment, it holds a unique and original appeal as no other coin before it.[1] Due to its inimitable nature, it has spawned a market niche all of its own, with collectors and bullion investors clambering to get their hands on the coins. Because it houses minerals that are considered rare, precious, or semi-precious, they double in price as investment coins while at the same time becoming one-of-a-kind showpieces that any collector would be proud to have. Not counting the inherent value of the stones or minerals encased in the clear acrylic locket, the limited mintage of the coin as well as the fact that is made from the Perth Mint’s unrivalled 99.99% fine pure gold makes it even more valuable, as it will undoubtedly appreciate in time, both for its rarity and its gold content.

Each Treasures of Australia gold bullion coin weighs an exact one ounce of gold, and has a face value of A$100. As with all Australian gold bullion coins, the Perth Mint is required by law to portray the bust of the reigning monarch on the obverse side of the coin, but owing to the unique nature of the Treasures of Australia gold coin, Queen Elizabeth II’s bust is of a reduced size, located above the clear acrylic ‘viewing window’ that houses the minerals or stones. Along wit this portrait of the queen are the legends: ‘ELIZABETH II AUSTRALIA’ along with the date of mintage, its face value, and the weight and purity of the coin itself.[2] Minted in a yearly fashion in much the same way as the Gold Kangaroos and the Gold Koalas, the Treasures of Australia obverse design changes with every yearly mintage, featuring highly creative abstract landscapes or backgrounds illustrating the origin of that year’s featured mineral or gemstone. The background is struck in high relief proof quality, to add that final touch of finesse to an already remarkable coin. Free from any distracting legends save the ‘TREASURES OF AUSTRALIA’ legend below the acrylic viewing window, each limited mintage coin is also encased in a hard acrylic round to protect it from scratches and damages wrought by handling or transport. To complete the look of the museum-piece like coin, each numbered piece comes with a jarrah timber display case that allows collectors to easily feature this unique work of art.[3]

After the initial minting of the ‘Sapphire’ Treasures of Australia coin, many others soon followed, among them coins that feature beads of opals, pearls, diamonds, and pure gold. Each coin has a unique reverse design that illustrates the landscape or environment where the housed minerals are mined or found naturally. The number of minerals encased in the ‘viewing window’ may vary, with some examples of coins possessing ‘errors’ or a discrepancy in the number of encased minerals found in each coin, making each piece not only unique for its avant-garde design, but for the unpredictability and variety of its housed treasures[4] (a feature desired by some collectors, while dislike by others). While initially geared towards the numismatic market owing to its uniqueness, the Treasures of Australia gold coins have also found a place in the coffers of investors who wish to capitalize on the value of both the coin’s gold and its housed minerals. Because of its popularity, a more affordable version of the ‘Treasures’ have been created. Crafted out of pure 99.9% fine silver, these more affordable versions are geared towards the middling numismatic market, and have proven to be just as popular as their more precious versions.[5]

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Content researched and created by Alexander Leonhart for ©

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