GIA Alumni Pearl Trip, 2008


Pearl Paradise
Jun 22, 2004
Did anyone from the forum go this year? They just returned from their two-week pearl trip. The stops this year were Japan, the Philippines and China.

I just received the following email from someone who was on the trip. It sounds like they had a good time even though GIA did not pick the best leaders this year.

Hi Jeremy, Well the trip is over. I went on to Beijing when the trip ended to see the Great Wall , etc.

Rose and Dino knew nothing............... The very first day Rose came to our breakfast table, tapped her watch and told us that we have 1 minute to be in the lobby. Rose and Dino were basically school teachers that tried to push us around in the beginning. It didn't last long. Rose and Dino never did much traveling before and they soon became completely overwhelmed. We simply watched them unravel . They never took charge of anything that needed to be done. One woman had a bathroom that didn't work in Hong Kong and they could have cared less. They had their free trip without doing what was needed. How we missed Akira!

The best part of the trip was Flower Island with Jewelmer. They had an auction for us. I bought an 18" 15mm gold pearl strand for $6800. I bid $100 over the listed price and got it. All of this group were very nice.

Next we went to Japan. Visited Mikimoto. Then we went to Otsuki. They appeared a little abrupt but I didn't pay them any mind. According to Reema ( one of the sister's), Otsuki was very offended , she thinks, by the way Dino was dressed (Cargo shorts and an oversized Hawaiian shirt, tennis shoes). They had an appointment with a lady in our group who had a business in Ohio. They cancelled that teling her they did not have the time. She was also wearing shorts, but with a tank top and tennis shoes.They refused to sell to us. Matter of fact, all venders but Jewelmer refused to give us a discount.

CP&J City was interesting but weird. I purchased about $5000 in freshwater strands. We saw alot of hidden poverty on our bus trip from Shanghai to CP&G. All the people just seemed to be in a trance. They put on a big welcoming party for us though.

We had fun in Hong Kong. I wouldn't mind living there! I cut off all the clasps for the strands I bought in China and sent them home because I was going to Beijing and didn't want any hassels.

I puchased abount 10 strands to sell. I am going to start out slow and begin selling them. Who knows but I have to start somewhere. I registered for Tuscan to purchase more.

I haven't processed my pictures yet. My husband had the digital camera so I used the disposable ones.

Rose is supposed to get back to us when she finds out where they will be going next year. Thank God it won't be them again! I am curious as to where we will be going next year. Have you heard anything? Think about next year!

Take care
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"Where will we be going next year?" Hmmm... The pearl tours are over. Next year there likely will be no trip at all, regardless of topic. The Gemological Research Conference will be keeping everyone busy and it doesn't look like anyone is up for doing the large amount of work it takes to plan such a trip at the same time as the conference.
Thanks for the update Jeremy, I'm sorry the trip sounded less fun than the South Pacific trip. Makes me not so bummed for missing this one.
Thanks for putting all the links here, Blaire. I read 1 or 2 of them but I did not know there were others.
Thanks. I paid a lot of money to go on that trip, so I want to share it as much as possible! :D
I heard from another tour participant that the itinerary was quite a bit busier than the south pacific trip. 6 hotels in 2 weeks! Wow.

The south pacific trip was truly amazing. Its hard to imagine any other trip matching it.