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Travelling to Malaysia and Philippines in Jan/Feb 2020... advice please?

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  • Travelling to Malaysia and Philippines in Jan/Feb 2020... advice please?

    I'm travelling to Malaysia and the Philippines in late January and February. I'll be in Kuala Lumpur and Manila. I will have some freedom to move around, and I want to go shopping for pearls. Where are the best places to go? I am particularly interested in south sea golden pearls. My mother is a native of the Philippines and I am half-Filipina but we have never purchased one of these, and so we are novices. We do not want to be taken in! We primarily prefer 24kt gold jewellery, and this is why we are very interested now in the pearls. We had never heard of them before now.
    "They say that he was led to invade Britain by the hope of getting pearls, and that in comparing their size he sometimes weighed them with his own hand..." Suetonius, De Vita Caesarum, 121 CE

  • #2
    I would say if you haven't taken the PearlsAsOne course yet it would be very helpful as an overview on GSS before you go - even if you only look at the GSS section. There's a free code you can get from POJ and/or PP, if I remember correctly.

    My only advice on gold south sea is that they are expensive, even at cost, so getting GSS that are actually nice will probably not ever be a "deal." Expect it to be expensive. That said, you can still find plenty of studs, pendants, etc. that would be just fine and a good quality. But, it depends on what you're looking for - if you're looking for an entire GSS strand that's another matter entirely.

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    • #3
      Hi there, thanks for the advice on how to educate myself on the GSS. I'd only be looking for a pendant and a pair of studs, at most, for purchasing directly within the Philippines. Same likely for my mother. Highly unlikely we'd go for a strand unless we'd be looking at purchasing from PearlParadise; the prices there are within budget for an entire strand of baroques. Any other credible merchants with similar prices - please do speak up! I'm willing to hear you out!

      However, what I'm looking for are replies on where in the Philippines to purchase the real thing. I do not want to buy dyed pearls, for example, or pearls that are being sold as GSS that are actually something else entirely. As I said: we'll be in Manila, but I'll also be able to travel with a car, etc. I just need someone to please point me in the right direction so we don't get taken in.
      "They say that he was led to invade Britain by the hope of getting pearls, and that in comparing their size he sometimes weighed them with his own hand..." Suetonius, De Vita Caesarum, 121 CE

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      • #4
        Jewelmer is undoubtedly the best place to go! Pricey, but you know you'd have the real deal.

        I have read that there are lots of dyed pearls at Greenhills but that there are some reliable vendors, too (but I don't know who.)

        As to buying online I bought my golden SPP strand from Cees Van Oije (Instagram and Facebook pages are under his name) of Amsterdam Pearls, and definitely recommend him.

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        • #5
          Thanks Pearl Dreams!
          "They say that he was led to invade Britain by the hope of getting pearls, and that in comparing their size he sometimes weighed them with his own hand..." Suetonius, De Vita Caesarum, 121 CE

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          • #6
            I've just been rereading parts of the PEARlSASONE course. In one comment, Jeremy Shepherd said that all the vendors from the Greenhills market buy their SSP in Hong Kong to sell at Greenhills. I thought that was interesting. I'll bet most tourists who buy from such markets assume the pearls originated in farms in the Philippines, whereas they may very well have originated in farms in Indonesia.

            For that matter, these vendors also bring in Chinese FWP from the Hong Kong show, and many are dyed.
            Last edited by Pearl Dreams; 10-06-2019, 09:46 PM.

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            • #7
              I think our best bet will be to go to one of the Jewelmer stores while in Manila. We are not likely to go to Palawan, but we will be in Quezon City. It won't be cheap, but that's not the point is it? We should be able to afford a single drop pendant each, or a pair of earrings. That's enough for us while in the Philippines. I want to support this company while we are there. It is incredibly important to my mother (who is native Filipino) that Filipinos are properly supported for their crafts and products. I'm not surprised that other countries are trying to get in on the GSS trade, and if they cannot produce the finest products, they resort to dyeing.

              I took the PearlsAsOne course (thank you so much Andrew M for that tip) and everything the Jewelmer stands for is very much what modern Filipino entrepreneurs, living as island nations, are trying to do: save their oceans, live sustainably, and create first class products that are not undervalued simply because they are Filipino. This has been a key issue with Filipino goods and services for generations. Other SE Asian products do not suffer from the same stigma as Filipino products. Thus, I am keen to purchase directly from them if I can, to put money directly back into that community, and support the land that produced my mother and continues to sustain the rest of my extended family.
              "They say that he was led to invade Britain by the hope of getting pearls, and that in comparing their size he sometimes weighed them with his own hand..." Suetonius, De Vita Caesarum, 121 CE

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              • #8
                Very well said, Loopysheep. We look forward to seeing your special GSS!
                Pattye


                PatriciaSaabDesigns.etsy.com

                facebook.com/PatriciaSaabDesigns

                SO MANY PEARLS, SO LITTLE TIME----

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