THE HUNTER OF GEMSTONES
The convergence of a born trailblazer and a land of rich and unique gems. A story that is still alive, exuberant and precious, and that has gained momentum with unique design features.
THE YOUNG JULES SAUER, WHO LEFT THE SECOND WORLD WAR BEHIND TO START OVER IN THE TROPICS.
"Gemstones: - a one-time harvest".
Jules R. Sauer
In 1939, the 18-year-old Frenchman Jules Roger Sauer decided to start afresh in Brazil. He arrived in the state of Minas Gerais and fell in love with the colorful and enigmatic world of gemstones. It was the beginning of a journey that transformed him into the Hunter of Gemstones: an icon who envisioned the region’s potential, and who dedicated himself fully to the world of prospecting for colored gemstones. In 1941, Lapidação Amsterdam Limitada was founded, and it started to change the landscape of the Brazilian haute jewelry market.
Among Jules’ best-known coups, there was the acquisition of the nationally-known aquamarine, baptized as Martha Rocha, the trendiest Miss Brazil of all times, as homage to her astonishing blue eyes. The stone weighed 80.5 pounds and its faceted gems adorned famous jewels that made their way around the world.
In 1963, Jules was enjoying a vacation with his family in the Brazilian state of Bahia, when he received a call from local prospectors, called “Garimpeiros”. They wanted to show him some new stones that they had found in the region of Salininha, east of the São Francisco River. They were not simple green beryls, as first thought, but real emeralds, the dreamed gem that everybody since the Portuguese colonizers were searching during the last 400 years. Sauer contacted the Gemological Institute of America, the world’s most prestigious gemological institution, for its confirmation, obtaining the certification of the first commercial Brazilian emeralds produced in the Country. Amsterdam Sauer became the South America’s most respected expert in Brazilian and Colombian emeralds along the following years.
The Amsterdam Sauer family is also responsible for the international promotion of Brazil’s valuable and rare gems such as: imperial topaz, which is only found in Brazil; the Piaui precious opal; and the fascinating Paraiba tourmaline, with its incomparable neon blue color.
THE GOLDEN YEARS
During 1956, the city of Rio de Janeiro was thriving in its golden era. Pulsating to a rhythm of unabashed elegance, the city attracted a multitude of foreigners and Hollywood stars. Bossa Nova, a sweet version of the American Jazz, was strummed by young talents inspired by the breath-taking scenery. At the epicenter of this chic and vibrant crowd was the Copacabana Palace Hotel.
It was in this charming setting, that Amsterdam Sauer inaugurated the first store adjacent to the famous hotel. For the first time, a Brazilian jewelry brand was offering the sophisticated service and décor of their colleagues at Place Vendôme in Paris. The address could not have been more refined, skirting the beach front of the Atlântica Avenue at Copacabana Beach.
The first Amsterdam Sauer jewelry store was opened next to the legendary Copacabana Palace Hotel, facing the ocean. And it is still there today.
In 1966, Amsterdam Sauer was the first South American jeweler to win the Diamonds International Award, the most prestigious recognition in international jewelry, for the Constellation ring, created by designer Marcel Küng. Amsterdam Sauer was awarded two more times, in 1992 for the Luna bracelet, created by Iany Inoue, and in 2000, for the Fireworks necklace by designer Bialice Duarte.