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The Big Three Jewels: Why Ruby, Sapphire and Emerald Top the List of Precious Gems

By   /   March 16, 2016  /   No Comments

Original article from forbes.com

Cartier Tourbillon Mysterieux Azure

Cartier Tourbillon Mysterieux Azure

Until recently, only emerald, ruby and sapphire were officially called precious gems. Everything else was called semi-precious. The precious categorization is a reference to value: a really fine ruby, emerald or sapphire can be priced higher per carat than a diamond. Sapphires are extremely hard and durable, so they will last a forever in a piece of jewelry, and rubies and emeralds are extremely rare. There are some rare finds among the so-called semi-precious gems that can be priced higher than the big three, but in general, a fine ruby, sapphire or emerald will hold its value and command more respect and a higher price than other gemstone. That is the reason Art Deco jewelry – heavy on the big three – is usually prized over other period jewelry. Top watch brands, mindful of this, use emerald, ruby and sapphire in their most important jewelry watches, as the big three below demonstrate – from Cartier , Backes & Strauss and Van Cleef & Arpels.

Cartier Tourbillon Mysterieux Azure

The Tourbillon Mysterieux Azure Pendant watch combines high jewelry, high watchmaking and mystery-watch technology, all Cartier specialties, in a beautiful piece that is both wearable and collectible. The star of the show is a spectacular 25.93-carat Sri-Lankan sapphire hanging from the bottom, chandelier style. It is removable – but why would you remove it? Fine sapphires are also used to form the tips of the butterfly wings, between rows of diamonds that radiate from the center. The movement, the Cartier-made tourbillon Caliber 9463 MC, is suspended between sapphire crystals. It is a unique piece that took 2,050 hours of work. Price upon request

3. Backes & Strauss - The Piccadilly Princess Royal Emerald Green 2

Backes & Strauss Piccadilly Princess Royal Emerald Green

This million-dollar, one-of-a-kind watch is called the Piccadilly Princess Royal Emerald Green. It is set with 245 Zambian emeralds totaling 31.91 carats in 10 different cuts, sourced from Gemfields, which owns the world’s largest emerald mine, the Kagem in Zambia. The watch is the third in a series of five unique watches that celebrate the 225th anniversary of Backes & Strauss, the world’s oldest diamond and gemstones company. One of the two previous editions was set with colored diamonds and the other, with sapphires.

Read the complete article on forbes.com

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