|18k pink gold and palladium Bull Ring with White diamonds, yellow diamonds, black diamonds, blue diamonds, green diamonds, two bezel-set orange sapphires, pink diamonds, six black spinels. It took six weeks to complete this piece.|
True Brazilian Paraiba tourmaline has become one of the rarest gems in the world. Named after the region of Brazil where they exist, the mines in this area are near depleted and according to several sources only bits and pieces remain of the turquoise to green gems.
|62-carat Brazilian Paraiba ring in 18k yellow gold studded with diamonds. It retails for approximately $420,000.|
(This is not to be confused with similar looking gems from Nigeria and Mozambique that is also being called “paraiba.”)
So imagine my surprise when an exhibitor at the recently held JCK Luxury tradeshow in Las Vegas showed me not one but two 18k yellow gold rings studded with diamonds and centered with true Brazilian Paraiba stones weighing 62 carats and 47 carats. The rings are from Zorab Atelier de Creation and is an example of its mastery in obtaining rare gemstones.
|Bloom Tiger Striped Flower Ring in black diamonds, blue sapphire, pink sapphire, 18k gold, silver, tsavorite garnet and white diamonds.|
The Lebanese-based family jeweler’s other mastery is creating bespoke and limited edition pieces from all types of rare and unusual gems that range from classic jewelry to masculine-themed art objects loaded with a variety of stones employing refined artistry and craftsmanship. Items range from a tiger striped flower ring featuring black diamonds, white diamonds, blue diamonds, yellow diamonds, and spinel; to a bracelet made of multi-colored diamonds, orange sapphires, red sapphires, spesertite garnets, yellow sapphires and white diamonds, palladium, gold, and spinel. There was even gem-encrusted ring in the shape of a bull.
|Diamond Scales Serpent bracelet with black and white diamonds, gold, palladium and spinels.|
Henri and Liza Istamboulian, the second generation family members who now run the 40-year-old business, say the company produces about 500 pieces a year of limited edition and bespoke jewelry and each item can take from six months to a year to complete. They are fully invested in the process from the mine to market. They source their gems from Africa and South America, including Tanzania, Mozambique and Madagascar and have their gem cutting operation in Bangkok.
|Blue Cascade Drop Earrings in white sapphire, gold, and palladium.|
To find their pieces you have to do a little work as they appear in fewer than 30 luxury retail stores throughout the world, including the firm’s flagship location in Beirut. Its largest market is the US, particularly Texas and California. It accounts for nearly half of their doors and is so large that the company opened an office in San Diego.
|Tiger Lily Flower Brooch in black diamonds, white diamonds, blue diamonds, yellow diamonds, and spinel.|
Their highly elaborate pieces are popular among those with specific tastes and deep pockets. Clients include oil tycoons from Russia to Texas as well as international celebrities, such as Elizabeth Taylor, Mariah Carey and Celine Dion. They are also popular in Asia, from China to Indonesia.
|Delicate Brilliance Jeweled Earrings in amethyst, quartz, blue and white diamonds, blue topaz, and blue zircon.|
Expansion isn’t necessary in their plans, they said, but the possibility of a second branded boutique is possible.
|Fire-Bred Horse bracelet in multi-colored diamonds, orange sapphires, red sapphires, spesertite garnets, yellow sapphires and white diamonds.|