Tanzanite is a rare precious gemstone variety of the mineral zoisite.
Discovered in 1967 at the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro at the site that remains its only known source in the world, Tanzanite has been described as 'a geological phenomenon'. With its exquisite violet-blue hues and incomparable rarity, Tanzanite has become recognised as a rare precious gemstone, competing with the likes of ruby, emerald and sapphire.
As testimony to this, Tanzanite was rated fourth most popular coloured gemstone in the US in 2002 and in 2003, the American Gem Trade Association named Tanzanite a December birthstone, adding to a list previously unchanged since 1912. It is also estimated that Tanzanite's lifespan is no longer than another 10-15 years. This adds to its special allure and popularity as an investment stone.
Shimansky stocks only top quality Tanzanite and people who have seen our quality of Tanzanite, fall in love with it immediately and refuse to settle for anything of lesser quality. Each one of our Tanzanite stones are also carefully selected, graded and certified and comes with it's own certificate, which reassures the owner of its quality of colour, clarity and cut, as well as its authenticity.
Discovered in 1967 by a Masai warrior, in the Merelani Hills in northern Tanzania, Tanzanite is mined from a single source world wide at the foothills of Mount
Killimanjaro, making it a rare and very precious gemstone.
A variety of the mineral zoisite, Tanzanite was brought into the commercial market place by Goan prospector, Manuel D'Souza, who incorrectly identified it as Peridot. Once it was correctly identified, and named after the country in which it is found, Tanzanite was mined to such an extent that it is now predicted that natural reserves of the stone will run out in the next 10 to 15 years, a factor which has added to its value and its scarcity. As a result, Tanzanite is considered to be a great investment stone.
The mystical and alluring gemstone Tanzanite is surrounded by legend and folk lore regarding its origins.
What is known about Tanzanite is that is a variety of zoisite.
It is unique among gemstones in that it is trichroic – that is
to say that it is the only gemstone that reflects three colours simultaneously: blue, violet and red.
Tanzanite has been declared the birthstone for December.
It has also been attributed with qualities of good luck and prosperity, and associated with celebrations of new life and new beginnings. It is also becoming increasingly recognised as an heirloom due to its very limited supply and rarity.
Amongst the Masai, the colour blue is seen as sacred and spiritual, and this coupled with its characteristics of new life have brought about a tradition where Tanzanite is given to Masai women after the birth of a child as an offering of health, positivity and prosperity to the child.
The cut of a Tanzanite stone is a important as the colour and clarity, as a poorly cut stone will affect the fire and brilliance, as well as the value. We only stock the best quality Tanzanite, and as part of our certification process we include a grade for the cut.
Tanzanite is one of the only trichroic gemstones known to man: it has the ability to display shades of blue, violet and red.
The colour range for Tanzanite is from a rich royal blue and bright violet to paler more pastel hues, depending on which
of the three trichroic colours is more dominant. The colour dominance depends on whether the gem is cut and polished from the long or the short axis of the crystal shaped rough Tanzanite; and the more intense the colour the better the quality.
Tanzanite clarity is graded in very much the the same way as diamonds, and measures the incidence of natural inclusions found in a Tanzanite stone.
IF = Internally Flawless; no inclusions visible under a 10x magnifying loupe.
VVS1 and VVS2 = Very Very Small inclusions; these Tanzanites have minute inclusions that are so small they are hardly visible under a 10x magnifying loupe.
VS1 and VS2 = Very Small inclusions; this grade contains minor inclusions that are not easily visible under a 10x magnifying loupe.
SI1 and SI2 = Slightly Included; these Tanzanites contain noticeable inclusions that are visible under a 10x magnifying loupe.
Shimansky only sells the highest quality Tanzanite stones. Our team of master
crafstmen and designers strive to ensure that only the best Tanzanite leaves
the Shimansky jewellery workshop.
International travellers to South Africa are entitled to claim 14% Value Added Tax (VAT) back on goods purchased in South Africa. When you leave our sunny shores, you can claim 14% VAT back on most goods purchased above a certain value. Shimansky will supply you with a tax invoice so that on departure you can claim the VAT back, which amounts to a great cost saving on your purchase.
In addition to the tax rebate, visitors to South Africa can also take advantage of the favourable exchange rates when buying Tanzanite here. With the Rand considerably weaker than most international currencies, South Africa not only offers the best in tanzanite, diamonds, gold and platinum but also the best value.
Ayanda: Queen of Tanzanite is a range of exceptional quality Tanzanite jewellery that is exclusively hand crafted by
Shimansky. This elegant collection of exclusively designed jewellery is hand crafted and
expertly set in our in-house workshop.
Renowned for the unusual Tanzanite cuts and designs,
the Ayanda range comprises of some of the most beautiful examples of Tanzanite set with diamonds in modern contemporary pieces of jewellery. Each stone is carefully chosen for its superior quality, and is accompanied by a certificate that guarantees its colour and clarity. The special grading system implemented by Ayanda describes and categorises Tanzanite in such a way that you can be assured that your stone is the of the highest quality.