Award-winning Calleija Jewellers has captured the imagination of jewellery lovers for many years. Eight years ago, the United Kingdom welcomed Calleija, its first Argyle Pink Diamond Select Atelier to the historical Royal Arcade, Mayfair, which has since delighted and enraptured visitors with its incredible displays of extraordinary jewels. Late last year, Calleija’s London boutique was transformed into a magnificent multi-level masterpiece, occupying the coveted No. 7 location of the arcade, overlooking iconic Albemarle Street.
The grand opening of the prestigious premises in Mayfair was celebrated in style with an elegant launch party, on Thursday 24 November 2016. Calleija’s impressive new location glowed with soft pink lighting and festive warmth. Guests were welcomed with crystal glasses of Louis Roederer’s finest champagne, sparkling pink cocktails and delicate hors d'oeuvres.
Among the intimate group of esteemed guests was the gracious Zara Phillips, MBE, partner in the Zara Phillips Collection by Calleija and Dr Ulrich Bez, who in his role as CEO of Aston Martin, was an integral part of developing Calleija’s partnership with the iconic brand. Calleija were also pleased to welcome international Jewellery Blogger, Katerina Perez, who later featured the Calleija boutique opening in her highly-acclaimed blog.
A delightful string quartet set the tone for the evening, with gentle melodies, as the anticipation grew for John Calleija’s opening of the new address. Thanking all in attendance for helping him to celebrate this momentous occasion, John told of his immense pride in the work of his team to create truly unique and exceptional works of art.
“Right now, we are the only Australian jeweller to have opened a boutique in London. We would not be where we are right now if we did not have an absolute passion for beautiful gems and jewellery. We search the world for these amazing gemstones to create extraordinary pieces and bespoke commissions with them.”
John then invited guest of honour and long-time friend to the Calleija family, Zara Phillips, MBE to cut the pink ribbon and declare the new boutique officially open. Guests were then invited to witness the magic of the new location for themselves.
Like all Calleija creations, the London boutique emanates exquisite beauty, finely hewn with intricate detail and exceptional craftsmanship. Breathtakingly flawless, down the finest detail, the boutique astonished guests as they made their way through each spectacular showroom. Luxurious marble, silk and velvet furnishings adorned every facet of the four-storey boutique.
Guests were taken on a journey of discovery through the showrooms and into the lavish VIP viewing rooms, before reaching the top level where an especially unique experience awaited. Guests were given a special insight into the world of Calleija craftsmanship inside the Artisan Workshop – where the Calleija masterpieces on display had come to life.
As rarity and exclusivity are the cornerstone of all Calleija designs, several remarkably rare gems were showcased to delight and astound guests. The Queen of Diamonds, one of the most spectacular Argyle Diamonds to ever be uncovered, was on display. The largest of its kind, the 1.7ct Purplish Red Diamond is one of the most historically significant of all Red Diamonds.
Also on display was the dazzling 5.18ct D Colour Internally Flawless Pear shape diamond, once owned by Sean Connery. Inspired by his partnership with Aston Martin and influenced by the dynamic James Bond films, John Calleija has transformed this diamond into a captivating 7.77ct work of art. Bonded by a fine line of seven exceptionally rare Argyle Pink Diamonds and encrusted with Argyle Blue Diamonds, this ring is an unrivalled and unique collectable piece.
The Zara Phillips Collection was of course on display, as were the Kailis Collections, which feature striking and highly sought-after Australian South Sea Pearls. As the guests made their way between the distinctive and incredible displays, it was clear that the new boutique had made a lasting impression. Setting each of the Calleija boutiques in Sydney, London and the Gold Coast apart is the intimate and personal experience which clientele are treated to, upon every visit. Visitors to the Royal Arcade will be delighted and captivated by the extraordinary world of Calleija jewellery - an experience unlike any other.
The Grand Opening of the exquisite new Calleija Flagship Boutique was, like all Callejia creations, a breathtaking sight to behold. Sparkling hues of purplish pink illuminated the iconic white sails of Marina Mirage, as guests arrived for the event on Friday evening, the 24th February.
Dazzling floral chandeliers were suspended from the eaves, as ethereal stilt walkers in twinkling dresses served champagne to the crowd. Stunning floral displays, including a remarkable floral wall, and large signature ‘Calleija C’, set the tone for the glamourous evening. Guests were officially welcomed to the event by none other than Channel Nine’s Eva Milic, long-time friend to the Calleija family. While the new boutique remained hidden by white gossamer curtains, anticipation for the reveal continued to build.
Suddenly, a divine voice burst forth from the crowd, as one of the guests made her way to the stage. Stunned invitees held their breath in disbelief as yet more singers emerged from within the audience, to perform a surprise a cappella performance, the likes of which have never been seen. They delighted the spectators with a range of incredible songs, as the excitement steadily mounted. Soon, John Calleija himself was pulled to stage, to raucous applause, he surprised onlookers with an energised and moving performance.
Soon thereafter, his Worship the Mayor Cr Tom Tate, guest of honour, was called to the stage to regale with his own story of a personal love affair with Calleija jewels. Expectations peaked, as the moment everyone had been waiting for finally arrived, and brilliance was unveiled. As the crowd counted along from 10 to 1, hearts fluttered, and finally, the curtains were withdrawn to reveal the incredible wonders within. Cr Tate graciously cut the ribbon and officially announced the Calleija Boutique, Marina Mirage, open. Guests were then invited inside, to be among the first to witness the magic of the new jewel in Calleija’s crown.
Suspended in the center of the showroom, highlighting the radiance of the masterpieces beneath it was a spectacular, architecturally-designed chandelier. ‘Virtual Eros’ the Award Winning Calleija headpiece, crafted with 44ct of scintillating White Diamonds, took center stage. Beneath it, the Calleija ‘Wishing Well’ featured some of the most highly desirable pieces, including the stunning 6.05ct White Diamond Ring, the 10.11ct White Diamond ‘Aida’ and a 36.25ct Pear Shaped Black Diamond ring.
Moving through the boutique guests were taken on a magical journey of discovery from the bespoke showrooms, through the intimate VIP viewing rooms, and finally to the artisan workshop; where they were able to witness the hive of creation and creativity at work. Along the journey, guests made their way past bejewelled Pink Diamond masterpiece ‘Flora’ and White Diamond stand-out ‘Cathedral’ which were accompanied by beautiful works of watercolour, designed to intricately reflect the exquisite detail of the pieces themselves. In pride of place, the show-stopping beauty of one of the largest and most spectacular Fancy Red Diamonds in all the world – the 1.04ct ‘Red Valentine’ valued at over $4M, was on display. A naturally heart-shaped gem, the incredible discovery from the Argyle Diamond Mine is one of very few diamonds in her class to ever be discovered.
As guests mingled, and marvelled at the new boutique, tantalising selections of fresh canapes and an oyster bar circulated. Signature Calleija Cocktails garnished with rose petals, and flutes of champagne were served from a custom made Calleija Ice Sculpture Bar, while the harmonious sounds of a live cellist floated softly through the air.
Towards the end of the evening, remaining guests were treated to music and dancing, with one lucky guest gifted a $3000 Calleija Gift Voucher for suggesting the winning name for the spectacular new 1.08ct Argyle Pink Diamond ring.
John Calleija, his beautiful family and their dedicated team were absolutely thrilled to celebrate the momentous occasion in Calleija history with all who attended the opening of the new Flagship Boutique. John and the Calleija team welcome all visitors to Marina Mirage to come and experience the luxurious new boutique and discover the magnificent world of Calleija Jewels.
There is nothing more beautiful than a declaration of true love. This Valentine’s Day, no matter how you celebrate, the gift of exquisite, handcrafted jewellery says ‘I love you' in any language.
Valentine’s Day has long been celebrated around with world with key symbols of love from chocolate and flowers, to padlocked hearts and intricately decorated cards and candies. Across the globe, many countries have their own unique Valentine’s Day traditions.
In Denmark, lovers and friends exchange pressed white flowers called ‘snowdrops' as well as traditional ‘lovers cards’ which are now synonymous with Valentine’s Day. While in Japan, men receive gifts from their sweethearts, including chocolates, candies and flowers, as their potential lovers attempt to woo them.
In some countries, such as the Philippines, Valentine’s Day has earned such great reverence and importance, that mass wedding ceremonies are held so that hundreds of couples may enter into marriage on this most auspicious of days.
China, on the other hand, has a heartbreakingly beautiful Valentine’s Day tradition. According to ancient Chinese lore, Zhinu, a king’s daughter fell in love with a poor cowherd named Niulang. They married secretly, before the king learned of their marriage and whisked Zhinu away from her lover, and back to the heavens whence she came. Finally, upon witnessing his daughter’s heartbreak and hearing the cries of her husband, the king allowed Zhinu and Niulang to meet in the heavens just once a year, on Qixi, or the ‘Seventh Night Festival’ which falls on Valentine’s Day. To this day, Chinese couples will look to the stars on Valentine’s Day and search for the reunion of Zhinu and Niulang.
Each of these Valentine’s Day traditions is beautiful and unique, and illustrates the significance of expressing love on this, the most romantic day of the year. However, for many couples throughout the centuries, the fleeting gifts of candies, flowers and chocolate have not been adequate to express their deep and eternal love. Exquisite, enchanting and enduring; fine jewellery represents the timelessness and wonder of everlasting love like nothing else. A reminder of a precious moment, the gift of diamonds can be treasured and cherished for a lifetime.
The tradition of giving jewellery was perhaps most notably pioneered by Russian artillery officer, Count Grigory Orlov in the 18th century, when he gifted the ‘Orlov Diamond’, an incredible 189 carat jewel, to Catherine the Great, as he tried to win her affections. Many years later, Richard Burton built upon this tradition when he gifted Elizabeth Taylor with the exquisite ‘Taylor-Burton Diamond’, adding to her remarkable collection of jewels, and publically expressing their intense love for each other.
Jewellery has since become synonymous with Valentine’s Day. Wherever you hail from, the gift of jewellery is a universally recognised symbol of love. Bestowing upon your sweetheart a gift of such radiant beauty is certain to bring a flutter to her heart. But not just any jewel will do. No matter the laguage you speak, a unique, bespoke masterpiece from Calleija says ‘I love you’ like nothing else can, this Valentine’s Day.
“A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away”. Antoine de Saint-Exupery
At Calleija, it’s the personal touch that makes all the difference. From the craftsmen in the workshop to the illustration professionals in the boutique, Calleija provide that extra special touch one looks for when making the most important decisions in life. “Designing and crafting these intricate creations is such a personal process”, says John Calleija.“There has always been the focus on specialised hand skills which have been passed down through the generations. Every design is an incarnation of passion, distinction and a commitment to handmade luxury jewellery”. With an alluring mastery of design and craftsmanship, Calleija jewels are the ultimate in artful personal expresssion. Visit Calleija to discuss your customised engagement ring, wedding band or bespoke design, and watch the Calleija team make all your dreams come true.
The Perfect Gems - Where It All Begins
As a qualified diamond and gem grader, John Calleija searches the world for the perfect gems. He personally selects every diamond and coloured gem to craft each creation. Calleija gems have been chosen for that special something, their extra special quality. John sees a gemstone, connects with its story and crafts a design guaranteed to bring out the intrinsic essence of its beauty.
John knows from the very beginning the best angles to bring out the light and scintillation from within the facets of every jewel. Upon deciding on your preferred design, the Calleija artists then set to work sketching the final piece just for you, with all the finishing touches in place, including selection of claws, the setting, gem size, band shape, shoulder design, gold or platinum, diamond placement and overall look. John Calleija personally reviews the final design prior to commencing production in the workshop.
Each diamond and gemstone is carefully manoeuvred into position with hair-thin precision, using the sketch to guide every step of the creation. Nothing is left to chance. Calleija craftsmen use handheld files, microdrills and scorpers to perfect the concave and convex curves of each design. It is this precision, the exact details, and years of experience that ensures your finished Calleija piece is composed of the ultimate pedigree.
Your Finished Design
At Calleija, our ultimate goal is to make all your dreams and wishes come true. Your finished design is the supreme reflection of this commitment. The flawless union of individuality, harmony, design and craftsmanship all meld together to produce your finished piece. Great care is taken to ensure all the intricate handcrafted details are exactly as you desire. Upon collecting your bespoke creation from your Calleija boutique, you will welcome into your life the most precious asset of distinct presence to cherish for years to come, destined to be passed down from generation to generation.
The Zara Phillips Collection by Calleija is the exciting new collaboration between Olympic Medallist, Zara Phillips MBE, and international award winning jeweller, John Calleija. After launching the collection on Thursday 18 June 2015 at The Royal Arcade in London, Zara and John took a few moments to discuss the essence of their beautiful jewellery designs.
John, who do you envisage falling in love with these jewels?
JC: “Zara and I designed the collection for today’s modern woman – she’s outgoing, ambitious, happy with herself, forging her own path and sharing good times with family and friends. The designs really complement all fashion styles as well, with each one featuring unique elements in diamond detailing and shape. The pieces are designed to transition from day to night, particularly the Coronet Suite, whilst the Saddle Suite has added elements of glamour and encapsulates the Unbridled Elegance theme. I love how individual they all are, which reflects the philosophy behind the collection”.
Zara, when did you first start thinking about creating a jewellery collection?
ZP: “When I first met John on Surfers Paradise Beach in 2013 -- I was attending an event at the Magic Millions Horse Racing Carnival as Ambassador for Racing Women Australia. Calleija is the Official Jeweller for the Carnival and I was delighted to be dressed in Calleija diamonds during that week. I had an instant connection with Calleija designs – there is something very special about wearing them. John and I talked about a creative partnership and how great it would be. He and I got along really well together -- we both have a real spirit for life -- and the collaboration just felt right to me. I have had a fabulous time working with him, and I hope everyone enjoys the collection as much as we have enjoyed putting it together”.
What is it you look for in terms of design and quality of the pieces you wear?
ZP: I have a hectic schedule being a mum and preparing a professional team of horses for the Olympics, so I look for timeless, wearable pieces with a touch of elegance and sparkle. Classic, contemporary and beautiful, that’s what I really look for. I’m wearing The Saddle Suite now: the ring, earrings, pendant and cuff. There are ladies and gents cufflinks too. I love the curves and lines of these pieces, they’re all beautifully shaped. The Saddle Ring was one of the first designs we decided on, and the collection sprang from there”.
Zara Phillips wearing the signature pieces from the Saddle Suite -- the Pave Set Saddle Ring, Earrings and Pendant. The images for the campaign were photographed in May 2015 at Zara's home and stables, at Gatcombe Park, United Kingdom.
John Calleija and Zara Phillips MBE launched their collaborative collection at the Calleija London boutique, inside the Royal Arcade, Old Bond Street, Mayfair on Thurdsay 18 June 2015.
Glamorous Sky Sports News presenter and MC, Kirsty Gallacher, with Zara Phillips MBE, for the exciting launch of the Zara Phillips Collection by Calleija, at the Calleija London boutique on Thursday 18 June 2015.
John, what was it like working with Zara to create this collection?
JC: “Inspirational! I started on this collaboration not really knowing where it would take us, but Zara is very sure of what she likes and the direction she wanted for the collection, which made the process easier and very enjoyable. As a designer, it’s great to create pieces that have meaning for both parties. We were bouncing ideas off one another -- it was a fantastic experience. Zara and I both have an eye for precision and beauty that drove us to perfect the designs time and time again, until we both felt they were right and represented the unbridled elegance theme. It has been a lot of fun and I have enjoyed the process immensely”.
John, can you tell us a little more about the Saddle and Coronet Suites?
JC: “As Zara said she’s wearing the Saddle Suite now, and the striking feature of all the rings from this suite are their concave and convex curves. The rings, pendants and earrings sit comfortably on the skin because of their unique ergonomic shape. The Coronet Suite conveys a look of strength whilst remaining graceful and refined. The Coronet rings, pendants and earrings feature diamond set symmetrically curved arcs. The rings are available in Grande, Medium and Slender size, which appeals to all hand sizes, depending on whether the wearer prefers the stackable look of multiple Slender rings, or the bold look of one larger Coronet Ring”.
And what of the future -- will the collection grow?
JC: “We really see the whole collection as ‘evolutionary’ -- we are working on more designs and the collection will continue to unfold – a very exciting time ahead for the Zara Phillips Collection by Calleija.