We had started our Opal business on the Gold Coast Australia in 1992. In this business we would travel all over Australia and do trade shows in Tucson USA, Hong Kong and Japan. On of these trips we met many gemstone sellers from all over the world and made many lasting friendships.
We were based in Perth Western Australia from 1980 to 1992 and had a good connection with wholesalers for Argyle pink diamonds and sold these “pinks” until 2000 when our supplier could not buy pinks as the cost had already exploded.The last pink diamond we sold was 0.80 carats to a Japanese buyer for $80,000 and today that same diamond would now cost me over $300,000 to buy.
I started our Gem business because our overseas buyers asked us to supply Chrysoprase which was mined in our state of Queensland and in Western Australia. My husband, Wayne, concentrated on our opal business and I enjoyed the gemstone side of business from pearls to rubies and other precious gemstones. In 2003 we had started our online opal site www.opalauctions.com and decided in late 2005 to start this site to specialise in gemstones.
After all our travels and connections, we realised that sellers should be verified with their own product knowledge and must be members of their trade organisation. We had met Brazilian, Moroccan and Peruvian sellers at the Tucson Gem Shows and was easy to buy gems direct from the source. On trips to Thailand we would visit the gem centre of Asia- Chanthaburi where there are many public markets where everyone can buy. Inside there are professional dealers to buy quality gems.
We would travel up to the northern area known as the golden triangle next door to Myanmar and Vietnam. We also met many local gemstone dealers at Trade Shows and it seems as if you like gemstones everyone is bonded by pleasures of what mother earth creates. So one connection would introduce us to another connection.
One of our Opal seller’s partner was from China and was bought up in China’s most famous pearl town at Zhuji. We had direct connection to a source out for fresh water pearls.
Another Brazilian friend hit a pocket of super seven crystals while mining. We bought a lot from him as a direct source of these unique gemstones. The area now doesn’t produce many of these gemstones.
Clearly, each year we find our gemstones’ suppliers informing us that precious and semi precious gemstones are getting harder to find. Supply of such beautiful gemstones are now obviously in decline.
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