One of my favorite things about summer is that I always manage to wind down a bit and take some time to reflect on the past. I consider it an enormous gift to be part of Willam Goldberg, a family business with such deep roots and heritage, and one of the things that I am most proud of is the beautiful collection of rare and famous stones that we have been able to share with the world.
In fact, in 1988 the American Museum of Natural History dedicated an entire exhibit to the exquisite natural fancy colored diamonds collection, entitled “Lili’s” collection (named for my mom) that made my father known across the globe.
Allow me if you will, then, to take a trip down memory lane and share some of the shining images of my past in the form of these rare and breathtaking stones - you may learn a few fun facts and diamond history too.
Premier Rose - 137 Carat Pear Shaped Diamond
Plucked from a conveyor belt by an alert miner, the rough stone weighed 354 carats. After months of sawing, cutting and polishing, the magnificent pear shape 137 carat Premier Rose emerged. This was the stone that really put my dad into the realm of big, important diamonds, which became his specialty. I was not part of the business yet when this diamond was being cut, but I remember it as being a pivotal time for William Goldberg bringing respect and praise to the brand. After this, my father became known as the “King of Diamonds”.
Blue Lili - 30 Carat Trapezoid Shaped Diamond
South Africa yields many of the world’s most captivating diamonds. The Blue Lili was named for my mother, Lili. Today this stone would have been worth tens of millions of dollars. It was a world class diamond.
Guinea Star - 89.01 Carat Shield Diamond
In the rough, the Guinea Star weighed over 255 carats. After months of cutting and polishing, three magnificent D flawless diamonds emerged: two satellite diamonds, an 8.23 carat pear shape and a 5.03 carat heart shape, and the incomparable 89.01 carat Guinea Star, which ended up in the Guinness Book of World Records for the highest price ever paid for a rough diamond!
The Red Shield - 5.11 Carat Red Diamond
The red rough diamond was originally about 13.90 carats. After it was carefully cut and polished, at 5.11 carats, the Red Shield was registered as the biggest red diamond graded by the GIA at the time. I remember it like it was yesterday. My dad went to a remote area in Brazil to look at this stone, and from the way he described it, we knew he would be buying it at any price, no matter what we said. He knew from the rough that this was a special piece, and it took many, many months to cut and bring out the full red color, but we did it and it turned out to be one of the most amazing stones ever seen. The only regret I had was that he sold the stone so quickly. It would have been nice to have it around a while longer to gaze at and appreciate its beauty!