Gorgeous Gemstones Tracked Down in Tucson
Each year, for roughly three weeks, the most incredible gems, minerals, and fossils from all over the world find their way to Tucson Arizona and are quickly followed by a host of connoisseurs, jewelers, rock hounds and collectors who scour the myriad of shows for the rare, the unusual, the beautiful, and the exotic, and this year certainly did not disappoint. Many new finds of unusual gemstones make their debuts in Tucson. Miners and cutters will work the better part of a year to show off their impressive selections for this annual event, and this year was no exception. Some of the more notable finds were:
Grape garnet from Africa. This vibrant purple garnet has an intense saturation coupled with a rich coloring reminiscent of the royal purples historically worn by nobles. Because of garnet’s high refractive index, these gemstones have an incredible sparkle and depth that draws you in to the stone, making it a favorite for our Winter Park jewelry store.
Spinel from Sri Lanka. Spinel is best known for its rich red color, which is commonly mistaken for ruby (spinel is often found in similar conditions and deposits as ruby, adding to the mis-identification). This year, we discovered some incredible spinel in softer tones, oranges and purples, as well as grays that really captured our attention.
Opal from Ethiopia. The play of color in Ethiopian opal easily rivals some of the best material that Australia has to offer. The opal forms under different conditions than what we traditionally see in Australia (the world’s most celebrated source of fine opal) and so tends to have a different feel than the Australian opals, but the play of color is absolutely spectacular. Additionally, Ethiopian opal is currently a very affordable alternative to fine Australian opal.
And of course, it simply wouldn’t be complete without a few diamonds along the way. We were fortunate to be able to purchase several two to three carat diamonds at great pricing, as well as several diamonds in the one carat range that are so well cut they are unbelievably radiant. The brilliance of these diamonds is unparalleled and makes a great addition to the impressive collection of fine diamonds in our Winter Park jewelry store.
We will certainly miss the beauty of Arizona’s desert, but fortunately for us, we were able to bring a bit of the beauty we found there home with us to share.