AZGem Gems

March 2016


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The World's Most Useful
Gem & Jewelry Monthly Newsletter

Written by Carolyn Doyle for customers of
The Dorado Company

and other visitors to the website who subscribe.




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Usable Gems... and a little opinion.


Imelda Marcos’ Jewelry Will Go To Auction



Imelda Marcos’ jewelry will go to auction! It is a thought that has intrigued high-end jewelry collectors and dealers for three decades.

The jewelry that is the subject of much speculation is "high jewelry", that is to say... world class. The designs, quality of materials, and workmanship represent the best efforts of numerous prestigious jewelry houses, including Bulgari, Buccellati, and Van Cleef & Arpels.




Imelda Marcos’ jewelry will go to auction to benefit the Filipino people. At least part of it will. When the people rose up against the Marcos dictatorship in 1986, the family fled to Hawaii, taking a portion of Imelda's huge jewelry collection with them.

Upon arrival, the United States Customs Bureau seized the jewelry. That jewelry, now known as the Hawaii Collection, was subsequently turned over to the legitimate, new government of the Philippines,

Another portion of her massive jewelry hoard was seized at the Manila airport as a Marcos loyalist attempted to smuggle that jewelry out of the country. A third portion of Imelda's jewelry was recovered in the Presidential Palace,

It is the Hawaii Collection that has been cleared to go to auction.




For those not familiar with Imelda, she is the widow of former Philippine President / Dictator Ferdinand Marcos. She reigned with her husband for more than twenty years. During those years she became world famous for her excesses in collecting shoes, artworks, and expensive jewelry.

In 1991Imelda was allowed to return to the Philippines from exile. She quickly became active in politics. She ran for president in 1992. She lost

In 1995 she won election as a congresswoman representing the First District of Leyte Province. She has served several terms in Congress.




Imelda Marcos was born Imelda Remedios Visitación Romuáldez on  July 2, 1929 in Manila, the capitol city of the Philippines. Her family was somewhat prominent. At age 21 she worked in a sheet music store in Manila as a singer.

Imelda was a beautiful young lady who dated young men from prominent families... including at least two future leaders, Benigno Aquino, Jr. and Ferdinand Marcos. 

In 1954 she married Congressman Ferdinand Marcos. Ferdinand would go on to be elected president in 1965. He declared Philippines martial law in 1972, effectively becoming dictator. 



During her "service" as First Lady of the Philippines, Imelda had gained a reputation as a person of strong will and demanding attitude, as well as a voracious collector of personal luxury goods. As the wife of the dictator she held several official titles and oversaw functions that allowed her to acquire even more personal luxury goods.

At the time Ferdinand and Imelda fled the country in 1986, she reportedly "left behind 15 mink coats, 508 gowns, 1,000 handbags, 1700 pairs of shoes and several thousand pieces of jewelry

Benigno Aquino, Jr. had gone on to establish a political party opposed to President Marcos rule. When martial law was decreed, Aquino was arrested and imprisoned. In 1980 Aquino suffered a heart attack, and was then allowed to travel to the United States for treatment. 

He stayed in the U.S.A. until 1983. He reasoned that things had changed in the Philippines. Martial law had been lifted, Marcos was ill but still president, and Imelda was effectively running the country in her husband's name.

Aquino returned to the Philippines on August 21, 1983. He was assassinated that day at the Manila airport.



Imelda Marcos’ jewelry will go to auction, according to a statement by the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) chairman Richard Amurao.

The Presidential Commission on Good Government has been established by the Government of the Philippines to recover "ill-gotten wealth" accumulated by the family during the Marcos dictatorship.



Marcos ill-gotten jewels worth more than a billion pesos

February 15, 2016

Following the weeklong appraisal in November 2015 of the massive ill-gotten jewelry collection seized from the Marcoses and stored in a vault at the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) for almost three decades, the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) announced that the value of all three collections now amounts to a conservative estimate of at least P1 billion.

This is based on the reports submitted by Christie’s and Sotheby’s, which show that the total estimated value of the thousands of pieces has significantly increased, some items increasing in value ten folds from previous appraisals. Further gemological testing on significant items is necessary for a more accurate estimate.

The Marcos Jewelry Collection is composed of three collections. The Malacañang collection was abandoned when the Marcoses fled the Palace and is presently under the custody of the Office of the President; the Hawaii collection on the other hand, was seized by the US Bureau of Customs upon the Marcoses’ arrival in Hawaii in 1986, under the PCGG’s custody; and the Roumeliotes collection, significant pieces that Demetriou Roumeliotes, who is believed to have links to former first lady Imelda Marcos, attempted to smuggle out of the country right after the former President Ferdinand E. Marcos’ ouster, which was confiscated by the Bureau of Customs (BOC) at what used to be Manila International Airport.

The collection includes diamonds studded tiaras, necklaces, brooches, earrings, belts, and other gems as well as women’s and men’s wristwatches such as Patek Philippe, Rolex, and Cartier. Some pieces were from renowned international jewelry makers such as Bulgari, Van Cleef and Arpels, and Bucellatti. Among the most notable pieces is the 25-carat pink diamond, considered to be an exceedingly rare jewel.

Just this week, the Privatization Council, chaired by the Department of Finance (DOF) has approved the proposed sale of the PCGG’s Hawaii collection in the international market.

“As the PCGG commemorates its 30th anniversary, the Commission remains unwavering in accomplishing its mandate of recovering all ill-gotten wealth of the Marcoses and returning the same to its real owners. We hope that the Filipino people will finally benefit from the proceeds of the collection. The jewelry confiscated from the Marcoses remain a singular manifestation of the misguided priorities of the Marcos presidency during his reign,” said PCGG Chairman Richard T. Amurao.

Recognizing the historical significance of these jewels to the nation, the PCGG plans to exhibit part of the jewelry collection prior to its international auction.

“It has been long desired by the PCGG to put the jewelry collection on public display to inform the Filipino people of the excesses of the Marcos dictatorship,” said Chairman Amurao. “The collection is a critical part of the past. We believe that the exhibit of these ill-gotten jewels will be a great vehicle to raise awareness, especially for the younger generation and those who have forgotten, to remind the Filipino people of the perils of the two-decade regime of corruption that was under the Marcoses,” he added.

As a matter of transparency and good governance, the PCGG will continuously confer to update the public as to the exhibition and auction of the Marcos Jewelry Collection which it will partly undertake with the BOC which is in custody of the Roumeliotes collection.

Aside from this, the PCGG is set to launch MissingArt.PH, a website to crowd-source tips on the whereabouts of more than a hundred missing artworks which the Marcoses purchased during their two-decade reign that have yet to be recovered. Extremely valuable paintings made by the most iconic artists such as Van Gogh, Picasso, Monet, Pierre Bonnard, and Michelangelo are just among the missing artworks.

The Marcoses amassed an art collection that can rival a country’s national gallery.


Imelda Marcos’ jewelry will go to auction three decades after citizens revolted against the Marcos regime... a dictatorship marked by brutality, greed, martial law, and massive borrowing that dramatically increased the national debt.

Imelda Marcos’ jewelry will go to auction! Those are sweet words for many who lived under the dictatorship and martial law. Some of these people fear that history could be repeated. Half of the current population of The Philippines were born after the Marcos dictatorship was ended. These younger citizens cannot understand nor appreciate what it was like to live under martial law.



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Photo Information


The jewelry to be auctioned (the Hawaii Collection) have not yet been described in detail. That information will be released by the auction house chosen to conduct the sale.

Top - Pearl and diamond tiara

Next - A few pieces of the Hawaii Collection

Next - Imelda Marcos, near the end of her reign as First Lady of the Philippines

Next - Imelda Marcos with just some of her shoes

Next - Another "statement" piece of jewelry from the Hawaii Collection

Next - Inspection and appraisal of the Hawaii Collection

Next - Another diamond tiara

Next: - Gem special offer - Aquamarine Oval

Next - Industry News - 88th Annual Academy Awards - A Jewelry Showcase

Next - Dealer Product Image - Amethyst Ring in Sterling Silver

Last - Dealer Program Image - Pink Spinel and Sterling Silver Earrings



$1.99/Mo. for 12 months of Economy Hosting at


A Google search for links or images using keywords such as philippines or marcos hawaii collection can return some very interesting information and websites.




Gem Offer



Here is this month's special gem deal. 


Gem:     Aquamarine

Color:    Santa Maria blue

Quality:     AAA

Shape:     Oval 

Dimensions:     10.1 x 6.2 mm

Weight:     1.84 carats

Price:     $92, plus shipping ($5)

Aquamarine is now wholesaling for more than $100 per carat in the one carat + range. This particular stone is from a parcel acquired a few years ago, so I can sell it for $50 per carat and not lose money... and I needed a gem to offer as my Monthly Special.

Aquamarine is the March birthstone.

Send me an email (with anti-spam) (carolynatazgemdotcom) and tell me that you want this fine gem.

We have other  shapes, sizes, and shades of gems available.

We keep gem prices low by buying quality gemstone rough worldwide, and having the rough material cut by our gem cutters in Asia.


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Gem Industry News


The 88th Annual Academy Awards - A Jewelry Showcase



The gathering of movie industry people for their annual awards ceremony is an event... and not just for celebrities and their fans.

The image above is of actress Tina Fey wearing a sapphire and diamond collar in white gold by Bulgari. While I am not familiar with her acting work, her Oscar night jewelry is beautiful and impressive.

Clothing designers and jewelry designers/jewelers routinely loan their most expensive creations to female celebrities to wear at high profile events. These designers do it for the purpose of gaining visibility and publicity for their high-end jewelry pieces.

World class designers and jewelers such as Harry Winston (New York, Jeweler to the Stars), Bulgari (Italy), Martin Katz (Beverly Hills), Chopard (Switzerland), Van Cleef & Arpels (France), Tiffany & Co. (New York), Louis Vuitton (France) and others happily work with celebreties to their mutual benefit.

Young, lesser known designers may occasionally get to work with an A List actress. For an aspiring jewelry designer, having their work make an appearance on the Red Carpet can represent the good fortune needed to establish them as a player in the design world.


gemstone news


Jewelry Dealers


jewelry dealers wholesale


The Spring season lets you work both sides of your business.

As always, mine your customer list for gift occasions... anniversaries, birthdays, and more.

You can also be replenishing your inventory. Holiday sales left sucessful dealers with cash on hand and depleted inventory.

Be the Quality Jewelry Discounter.



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Jewelry Dealers Program


jewelry dealers program


Do you enjoy jewelry and gems?

Do you enjoy talking with friends and friends of friends?

Could you use an extra income source?

Take a look at our great Jewelry Dealers Program.



Carolyn Doyle

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