FROM THE FOUR CORNERS – PT13 SAPPHIRES & MOUNT LAVINIA
looking into a sapphire
The first picture shows Alexander Kreis taking a closer look at a sunflower yellow sapphire. He uses a flashlight designed for this very purpose, amongst other tools.
Usually, the bigger the gemstone, the more likely it is that it contains unwanted inclusions, making clean sapphires highly sought after. Also, a vivid color is important. “Sapphires come in many color variations. The most famous variations are blue, yellow, and orange-yellow. The colors should be reminiscent of flowers. In particular, the blue should be similar to a cornflower. Yellow should be intense and rich like a sunflower. The orange-yellow color is supposed to be reminiscent of a blossoming Lotus flower. This special orange-yellow color is called Padparadja, and in fact, comes from the Sinhalese word for Lotus flower: Padmaraga.
Heading back to the hotel
Before Alexander Kreis and Stefan Kreis head back to their hotel in Colombo, they make a stop at one of the many street food shops on the side of a road. “What we see here on the second picture is called Paan. It is a typical piece of bread in Sri Lanka. This vendor uses an electric grill to bake it, but the more traditional way is to roll it out with your hands and throw it against a heated pipe. It will stick to the wall of the pipe and after a while, they peel it off”, tells Alexander Kreis. The Paan is fairly neutral in its taste and goes well with the traditionally spicy foods it is served with. Stefan Kreis adds that “as a drink, milk with a shot of black tea, or black pepper is served. This is particularly true for breakfast”.
Back in the hotel Mount Lavinia in Sri Lanka’s capital city, Colombo, they talk about their journey and draw their conclusions. “It becomes apparent that really outstanding sapphires in color and size are hard to find. It strengthened our belief that the exceptional pieces are the ones that will bring the most happiness to our clients, their families, and generations to come. Further, forcing a gemstone into an uninspired traditional cut doesn’t do its natural beauty justice. Every piece grows in a unique way and has an exceptional journey of creation behind it. An individuality worth to be cherished”, comments Alexander Kreis.
Tales from the four corners – PT 12 A typical set-up
Yellow Sapphire designed and cut by KREIS
[Alexander Kreis evaluating a yellow sapphire – Picture by KREIS]
[A street food vendor making Paan in Sri Lanka – Picture by KREIS]
[Hotel Mount Lavinia in Colombo – Picture by KREIS]