Michael Hill and Kim Kardashian dazzle in New York

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Queenstown mega-jeweller Michael Hill employed a reality TV superstar to launch his “world’s best couple” competition in New York on Monday.

Kim Kardashian modelled an enormous, 22 carat princess-cut diamond set in platinum, which Hill is offering as first prize in a contest that is open to dating, engaged and married couples in New Zealand, Australia, Canada and the United States.

Hill brought the diamond over from the vault of his home, near Arrowtown and is promoting it as “the ultimate engagement ring”.

After the Rockefeller launch he texted Mountain Scene: “We’ve nailed it. Kim Kardashian loves us and the 22 carat diamond.”

Hill sent the text from a private jet as he flew to Toronto.

He’s on a nine-city North American tour over the next two weeks – after Toronto he’s on to Chicago.

The competition is designed to lift the profile of Hill’s jewellery stores in the US – he bought 17 in 2008 but earlier this year had to close eight.

Contestants enter through Twitter, Facebook or at my22ct.com, and undergo a series of online challenges.

“We want to inspire blokes to be more romantic,” Hill told Woman’s Weekly Australia.