Buying fine jewelry can be an intimidating experience: You may be able to tell the difference between cubic zirconium and a diamond, but can you be certain that the lovely diamond ring you are purchasing is priced right for the quality? Is the quality certified according to Gemological Institute of America (GIA) or American Gem Society (GSA) standards?
“If you buy jewelry at a department store, it is unlikely that the diamonds will come with a GSA appraisal, which is the only standard that is measurable across the industry,” explained Arthur Shor, co-owner with Larry Shulman of Cal Jewelry in East Long Beach. “We love to educate our customers, so they can be assured that they are getting the best quality for their budget.” said Shor.
Whether purchasing a small Christmas “token of your affection” or investing in the ring that promises “forever,” shopping at a store that has a 50-year legacy of quality and service is worth the detour away from shopping malls.
Established in Long Beach in 1958, Cal Jewelry has been at its present location in East Long Beach since the early 1980s. Shulman and Shor bought the store in 1989, having worked with the previous owner for a number of years. Over the last 30 years, their base of loyal customers has continued to grow. “Our customers know we give them honest, personalized service designed to meet their specific needs,” Shulman explained.
The store sells items reflecting the latest fashions in jewelry such as the currently popular diamond legacy pendants, along with ever popular tennis bracelets, pearls and, of course, engagement and wedding rings. They are also authorized retailers of Lladró and Swarovski collectibles (including the 2008 snowflake ornaments). Still, there are many treasures waiting to be discovered for those who are looking for something unique.
A welcome alternative to mass-produced jewelry is a lovely selection of rings and earrings studded with rare colored diamonds, including black diamonds and a dazzling selection of rare gemstones, such as green quartz, green amethyst, yellow sapphire and grape garnets. Never heard of such stones? The staff at Cal Jewelry will be happy to introduce you to the world of gemstones.
Cal Jewelry also stocks brilliantly designed adjustable chains in white or yellow gold that allow the wearer to shorten or lengthen the chain from choker length to 22 inches, depending on the neckline of a particular outfit.
Along with carrying the Pulsar and Seiko lines of watches, new to the store is the complete Oceanus line of Casio watches. “These solar-powered watches with rechargeable lithium batteries are very popular among young men,” says Shor, who hopes to tap into this demographic of future ring buyers and establish the next generation of loyal customers.
“We take the time to educate men who come to buy an engagement ring but don’t know much about diamonds or jewelry,” Shor said. “We want to make sure it fits his budget and is something his bride-to-be will like.”
While creating custom jewelry and selling quality is the passion behind Shor and Shulman’s longevity in the jewelry business, it also stems from the relationships they establish with their clients. “We treat them with respect and always try to do the right thing for them,” Shor explained.
Cal Jewelry is located at 6291 East Spring Street near the corner of Palo Verde. The store’s phone number is (562) 421-5030.