DOMINICAN LARIMAR JEWELRY THE ESSENCE OF THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

As the best kept secret of the Caribbean, Dominican Republic has all the resources necessary to be identified as a tropical paradise: beaches with different sand and sea water colors, lush vegetation, rivers, mountain ranges, with the highest peak of the Caribbean (3,098 m), lakes, among with the Enriquillo lake with the lowest point (29m below sea level) in the Caribbean, as well as, all sorts of caves.

But there is something more we are gifted with: A unique treasure, a pectolite with blue colors only obtainable in the Dominican Republic, the only source for this stone named Larimar by its second discoverers Miguel Mendez. Larimar, a combination of Larissa, his daughter’s name, and mar, the Spanish word for the sea! Its first discoverer was a Spanish priest by the name of Miguel D. Fuentes L. who did not succeed in arousing interest in this treasure.

 

In the seventies Mr. Mendez together with his co-discoverer Norman Rilling were impressed by this stone and had it analyzed by the Smithsonian Institute, where it was identified as a pectolite with a unique blue color; it has a hardness of 4.5 – 5 on the Mohs scale; considered as a semi-precious stone.

To make this Larimar stone more unique, it has been attributed healing properties of a different kind, persons believing in this have been known to wear Larimar jewelry, where the stone is in contact with the body, or to put Larimar nuggets in their pockets or under their pillows.

The additional names given to this stone related to its healing properties are Atlantis Stone and/or Dolphin Stone, connecting this stone to the lost continent of Atlantis.

The psychic and prophet Edgar Cayce (1877 – 1945), predicted that a “blue stone” with extraordinary healing attributes would be found on an island in the Caribbean, where he believed part of Atlantis could be found. Stefilia’s Stone is another name given to the Larimar Stone!!

The captivating blue beauty of Larimar with its high variety of light to deep ocean and sea blues, as well as, green-blue hues, with patterns designed by nature like shore breaks of white or light blue colors, achieving unique appearances, has stolen the hearts of many and making it attractive to invest.

American, Indian and Chinese are the main buyers of Larimar, most of the time having local intermediaries working for them, who will deal with the miners in favor of the investors, obtaining from both the miners as from the buyers very interesting commissions. Many times the miners reserve for these buyers top quality Larimar which they sell in lots containing besides the AAA quality also AA and A qualities for a rounded price in order to sell them all.

Larimar bought by Chinese and Indian customers are worked in their countries, but the Larimar stones bought by customers from the USA, are worked mainly in Thailand, Indonesia and India, where artisans with lifelong experience inherited from their family make beautiful Larimar silver jewelry with art characteristic of that region. The silver work is artistically elaborated with typical designs of their place, many time combined with precious and semi-precious gems increasing the price of the Larimar jewelry piece.

Dominican silversmiths are practically new in this art, introduced in the Dominican Republic in the fifties, during the dictatorship of Trujillo, in order to produce Amber jewelry with 925 silver.

The designs of Dominican jewelry are of simple lines, charming, attractive and beautiful, appropriate for any age, any time, any outfit.

 

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Pear-shaped, teardrop and oval forms are the most popular symmetrical pieces Dominican artisans produce, but they prefer to make more irregular shape cabochons to take advantage of the Larimar slab, creating beautiful pendants, rings, bracelets and necklaces, impregnating every finished Larimar jewel with the real essence of the Dominican Republic.

The Dominican government has installed an artisan school in the area of Barahona to teach the locals the skill of producing top quality Larimar jewelry and motivate foreign Larimar stone buyers to make their jewelry in the Dominican Republic so that these young men can make a living with this art and get out of poverty, benefiting from the fact that this unique, rare Larimar stone is only mined in our country.

Contrary to what many might think, Dominican artisans are better paid than artisans in the other countries where the Larimar stone is taken to produce jewelry; with every Larimar jewel sold in or from the Dominican Republic, almost thousand families are supported with the benefit of the Larimar business. The Dominican Republic has declared Larimar as its national stone, forming part of the culture, tourism and artisan business of the Dominican Republic; LARIMAR is THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Hi everybody, just a quick note to tell you that we have decided to include in one of thelarimarshop.com sections a FAQ section to make it easier for our customers to have a reply to their questions at hand!

Nevertheless, we will always be happy to answer any special question that does not appear in this FAQ list.

1. Have your Larimar stones been treated in any way?

Our Larimar stones are pure, genuine, carefully selected at the mines in Bahoruco, southwest of the Dominican Republic, the only place on earth so far, where this unique, awesome stone is found and mined. In the Dominican Republic exists no dyeing stone practice.

2. What is a Larimar specimen stone?

A Larimar specimen stone is a stone where the Larimar has developed in different blue and blue green shades, mixed with other materials or inclusions such as hematite or red dendrites (like these earrings), white calcite, natrolite, fossilized wood, copper, etc. creating gorgeous, fabulous, nature designs. Every Larimar specimen stone is unique!

 

3. Where are you located?

We are located in Santo Domingo, main city of the Dominican Republic; The Dominican Republic shares the eastern side of the Hispaniola Island; Haiti is on the western side!

4. How is your jewelry made?

Our jewelry is made with top quality Larimar stone brought directly from the mines, to our workshop, where young, native artisans cut, shape, polish and mount this semi-precious gem in 925 silver or 14K gold bezel cups.

5. Why should I trust you?

We have been in the Larimar business for many years and we guarantee our jewelry! Our main goal has been and is to make our customers happy with each purchase. To treat each Larimar lover with top quality customer service and at the end gain a new friend.

 

6. Do I have to pay customs fee?

Customs regulations are different in every country. We recommend you to check with your customs official office. We are willing to assist you with any shipping instructions for customs purposes. We are not responsible for any customs fee or tax in any country.

7. Do you offer express shipping?

Yes, we offer express shipping with guaranteed delivery of 1 – 2 working days inside US and 1 – 4 working days outside US.

8. How do I receive my order?

All orders are beautifully gift wrapped, packed in a small white box, decorated with an aqua blue lace or a raffia lace, to create an exciting moment when you or that person you have gifted with your order receive your package! In the box we include card with a brief history of the Larimar stone and care tips! The Larimar jewel is placed in a white organza pull pouch.

9. Do you make more than one piece of each design featured in your store?

Most of the Larimar jewelry we are offering are one of a kind, unique in its design, in its blue shade and pattern; if you see a piece that catches your eyes, don’t let it go! When we have more than one unit in stock of the Larimar jewelry displayed, we indicate quantity available, as well as the variety of blue shades and patterns.

10. How does your reversible Larimar and Amber reversible ring work?

This ring is our best seller, loved by all; the 925 silver bezel cup has on one side Larimar and on the other side Amber with two silver shanks to help turn the bezel cup to one of the two stones you want to wear.

11. How do I take care of my Larimar silver jewelry?

It is recommendable to clean your Larimar jewel after wearing it or from time to time, to avoid accumulation of body oil and dirt. Use a jewelry cleaning or polishing cloth to clean the stone and silver.

You can also wash your Larimar piece with clean fresh water and a few drops of mild soap, using a soft brush to clean dirt from the silver setting, rinse and dry with a soft cloth. The Larimar stone might turn more blue due to the water absorption of the stone.

Avoid long sun exposure, salt water and chemicals. When using household and any sort of chemicals, don’t wear your Larimar jewelry to stay away from any possible damage on the stone and/or silver setting. Treasure your Larimar jewelry for this is an awesome, unique stone and there is no reliable source in the Dominican Republic that can secure that we will still find/have Larimar stone for many years to come!!

“PECAO FRITO” in the Dominican Republic is a must!

When visiting the Dominican Republic, a piece of paradise in the Caribbean, eating fresh fried fish at the beach is a must, it’s part of our folclor; you will get in contact with our way of enjoying life in a healthy way!!!!!

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From the Tainos we have inherited our love for fish, we have good fishermen, specially for fried fish or “pecao frito” (pescado frito) as pronounced by most Dominicans. Although we are an island, fish is much more expensive than meat. Dominican household does not often cook fish as they do with chicken, the number one meat; depending of the region, fish is prepared in different ways. However there is a way fish is prepared we all love and that is fried fish at the beach!!

Practically on all the coast of the Dominican Republic, along the beach and seaside towns, you will find fresh fish, that is, the catch of the day! There are the typical small places, made of four strong wooden posts and a zinc or palm tree roof, along the beach with a few chairs and a small table! Originally all these chairs were made of “Guano”, but during the past few years, plastic chairs and tables are substituting these chairs.

Close to the beach you will normally find rows of food stands, with a large metal “basin” , locally made, with coal used as fuel, and a large frying pan, where different kind of whole fishes are fried after being rubbed with salt, oregano, coated in flour and then deep fried until crispy!  Most of the time, the frying oil is reused, which many natives believe gives the fish a special tasty touch!

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When you are at all these stands you get the feeling of a Fried Fish Fair, here you are being offered delicious whole fried fish in different sizes/weight, by some guys whose job is to bring customers to the stand they work for! The price of the whole fish is between US$ 8.00 and US$ 10.00, but it will be determined by its size/weight and type! The most popular fishes are the Loro (Parrotfish) and the Chillo (Red Snapper).

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You can buy already fried fish or you can ask for the type of fish you want them to fry for you from the fresh variety they have available! The fish will be always served with lemon slices; to eat with the fish you have a variety of fried food such as plantain(tostones), sweet potato (batata), cassava rolls (bollo de yuca) and Johnny cake (Yaniqueque), introduced by Afro-descendants coming from other Caribbean islands!

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You can also go to a restaurant in town or close to the beach, for a more refined ambience, but you will miss the typical Dominican atmosphere! A beer, normally Presidente, is ordered, as well as, soft drinks for the children and at the rythm of a Bachata or a Merengue, which are the loudly played, you will eat your fried fish! Dominicans will prefer to eat their fish with the fingers; knives and forks (plastic ones) will be ignored, to fully enjoy every bit of their fish!

Dominican Republic has it all, awesome tropical sceneries, beautiful beaches, mountains, rivers, our unique Larimar stone and friendly people who enjoy life in a simple way!!