Calling All Carat Collectors: 3 Diamond Destinations For Geezers & Gals
Written by Jaillan Yehia
They’re a girl’s best friend, they’re forever, and they’re timeless.
You find diamonds appearing everywhere in our language as well as our jewellery boxes; they’re ‘in the rough’ as well as on the soles of your shoes.
They’re the only precious stones which have had world famous slogans invented about them and to which countless well-known terms and phrases lead back through history.
The world has always been fascinated with diamonds – but if you’re fascinated with the world, here are 3 diamond destinations to which you should travel to see jewels shine bright.
I always travel with a few basic items that raise the class of my outfit from Economy to First (well, at least premium economy).
Even if I’m travelling with only carry on, there are certain tiny little items I always pack which make me feel like a million dollars. I’m talking about diamonds of course.
Even though I shop online constantly, I’ve found nothing beats shopping on your travels and buying jewellery while travelling has been a lifelong obsession because the work created by artisans abroad is often so much more interesting than what we find at home.
3 of the best destinations for buying beautiful jewellery
The Prettiest Diamonds In The World: Rome
One of the reasons that we are so fascinated by diamonds is due to the beautiful designs that the stones are transformed into, and for me Italy has always been second to none for its design.
I remember buying an Armani watch years ago from a jeweller in Italy with small sparkly diamonds instead of numbers, and from then on I never bought a watch from any other shop, so impressed was I by their styles and service.
The artwork available at world class Italian jewellers is what makes shopping for diamonds and fine jewellery in Rome so special.
I was lucky enough to interview a renowned Roman jeweller to learn a few more facts about these dazzling stones, and he let me into an amazing jeweller’s secret about seeking out so-called clever inclusions (ones that bring down the price but can’t be seen with the naked eye) – as well as explaining why Rome is such a centre for excellence when it comes to jewellery, and explaining the difference between buying from an online jeweller and buying jewellery in Italy in a shop and that’s why my personal favourite diamond destination is Italy.
The Most Diamonds In The World: Tel Aviv
If you’d like to be wowed by hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of diamonds with no temptation to buy then a tour of the world’s largest diamond trading complex in Tel Aviv could be for you.
This exchange is in Ramat Gan just outside Tel Aviv and 15,000 diamond traders work there, trading half the world’s diamonds worth about $5 Billion – so it’s fair to say security is tight at this major diamond destination.
You have to bring your passport and you’re fingerprinted even though you need an invitation to visit, which can be organised by your tour company.
You will learn how diamond valuations work, see where deals are made and learn that the USA is the biggest customer, as well as the fact that the princess cut is actually an Israeli invention.
The Biggest Diamonds In the World: London
The Queen has an exceptional collection of art and jewellery, but when it comes to diamonds her treasures really shine – she owns parts of the world’s largest diamond, the famous Cullinan diamond, a 1000-carat stone that was so large that when they discovered it nobody believed it was real.
It took 8 months to cut it and it ended up in 9 pieces, 7 of which were reunited to be displayed for the first time at the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Exhibition at Buckingham Palace.
Even though the exceptional exhibition is over London is still one of the world’s best diamond destinations; the best bet for visitors to the capital is to head for the Tower of London where the Crown Jewels which hold Cullinan I (530.2 carats) and Cullinan II (317.4 carats) are on display, as well as Koh-i-Noor diamond, which is the subject of a great deal of legend.
It is said to be unlucky for men to wear it and it was even re-cut when the original cut in 1851 didn’t provide enough bling!
The Queen apparently has a jewellery collection so vast that there’s an entire room in the basement of Buckingham Palace that’s the size of an ice rink just to hold it all. Given that she has brooches and tiaras, swords and trinket boxes heavily adorned in diamonds I can’t see Her Majesty needing to buy herself some new diamond jewellery anytime soon, but that’s exactly what I am off to do right now.
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