Posted on Thursday, May 21st, 2020 at 10:27 am by LaLonde Jewelers
So, I have been doing this for awhile and one thing people ask me when buying an Estate Piece is “So, what is the story on this one?” Now a lot of pieces have a story that I can tell, and others just don’t.
But I am going to tell you a story.
In 1979 Beverly Hills, California, a Saudi Prince, al-Fassi purchased a multi-million-dollar estate on Sunset Blvd.
He was 23 years old with a 19-year-old wife. He was very flamboyant and caused considerable disruption in this movie-star infested residential community. He had a number of nude statues on the pillars surrounding the grounds. That was ok, what wasn’t was he had all the private parts painted in detail. This drove the residents nuts.
This all happened at the same time that I arrived in Santa Monica to enter Gem School. I have to admit I even drove by to see this spectacle.
Thing is, about 10 years later while now living in Hawaii I became friends with a British gal Pam, who for years was the best friend and personal valet of Chrissie Hynde, the lead singer of the rock group ‘The Pretenders’.
Well one day Pam ask me if I could sell a gold and diamond bracelet for her. She told me that it was given to her by a Prince al-Fassi from Beverly Hills. It appeared that she and her rock n roll friends used to party at his house.
I said, "that guy!"
Oh, yea he was something, while throwing parties with piles of drugs on the tables he would get phone calls informing him that someone in his employ back home was caught stealing. What should we do? Cut his hand off!
I took the bracelet with me on my next business trip to Alaska. I had in mind the exact woman who would love it. This woman Donna, ran a motel and restaurant in Fairbanks. She was very interesting and had lived all over the world. She asked me “what’s the story on this one?” I told her.
The price is $6,000.00. She looked at it and said, “I only see fifty-five hundred here”. I let her have it at that price. She went into the back and came out with a stack of cash must have been twenty grand. She peeled off the fifty-five, gave it to me with a smirk.
You know I learned more that day by getting beat out of five hundred bucks than if she had paid the full amount.
Like Paul Harvey would say “and now you know the rest of the story.”
Written by Dan LaLonde, G.G., G.I.A.
Lalonde Jewelers & Gemologists
The Gem Expert