x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Exclusive gold and diamond jeweller shines for VIPs only

An exclusive jewellery lounge for VIPs is opening in a location more often associated with haggling to bag a bargain.

The Aastha Jewellery Lounge will open its doors to customers on Sunday in the heart of the Dubai Gold Souq. Pawan Singh / The National
The Aastha Jewellery Lounge will open its doors to customers on Sunday in the heart of the Dubai Gold Souq. Pawan Singh / The National

The country's VIPs are used to visiting the likes of Abu Dhabi's The Avenue to shop, but an exclusive new outlet is opening in a place people usually go to haggle for a bargain.

The Aastha Jewellery Lounge will open its doors to customers on Sunday in the heart of the Dubai Gold Souq.

But do not be too quick to mark the date in your diary. It will be open only to the UAE's wealthiest.

"There will be no walk-in clients," said Kamlesh Parekh, the man behind the venture. He is a founder of Shree Ganesh, an Indian jeweller that earns more than 95 per cent of its revenue from exports to the UAE, Singapore and Hong Kong.

The lounge, which claims to be the first of its kind, will sell diamond jewellery ranging in price from US$5,000 (Dh18,365) to $4 million and offer its customers a range of services such as limousine transport.

"There is nowhere else in the world like this," said Mr Parekh.

The lounge, which is Mr Parekh's personal venture and named after his daughter, includes a stage for fashion shows.

"There are lounges which promote designer clothes or an art gallery, but none for jewellery. If there is any lounge that is existing in the world it is only for one collection and not promoting any other jewellers or designers under one roof," he said.

Shree Ganesh's sales were $1.5 billion last year, up from $1bn in 2011.

"Demand has increased, so my imports have increased and so have the sales," said Mr Parekh, who claims to supply for the majority of the UAE's jewellers.

"We started on a very small scale and over the period of 14 years the turnover has come to this."

About 70 per cent of the jewellery he sells to retailers in the UAE comes from India, with the rest from Thailand, Hong Kong and Antwerp.

Jewellery on sale in the lounge will be imported from Hong Kong, Bangkok, Antwerp and India. The showpiece is a 20-carat, flawless loose diamond on sale for Dh4m.

 

gduncan@thenational.ae