7mm x 7.5mm "AA Quality" Japanese Akoya Cultured Pearl Necklace
5 out of 5, Based on 2 Reviews.
My wife and I are thrilled with my purchases from American Pearl. You and American Pearl have helped me make make my wife's dream of owning a fine set of akoyas come true.
I know you spend a lot of time on this site educating clients on the fine points of pearls. There is so much bad information out there many of which is being propagated by a few selling mediocre quality pearls that they claim are on par with Mikimoto AAA quality pearls. I wanted to share my story with your customers (one customer to another) to help them make an informed decision. If any of your customers needs a reference from a past customer, please give my email out to any customer and I would gladly tell them my experience first hand.
I initially fell into the trap set by some other merchants and bought to other merchant's AAA grade pearls thinking that would be equivalent to high end Mikimoto pearls (which was what they claimed on their websites). Both strands were ok, but not the level of quality I was looking for. I have come to learn that the grades themselves mean nothing and are useless for comparison shopping. Because it was so difficult (impossible actually) to comparison shop for pearls online, I thought the safe bet for buying the best quality pearls online was to by a Hanadama certified necklace (certified by the Japan Pearl Science Lab) which many of your competitors claim is a guaranty that you are purchasing Mikimoto AAA quality.
In my quest to find the best price for a 18" 7x7.5mm certified Hanadama necklace. In the course of my search, I discovered American Pearl. American Pearl was selling a Hanadama necklace (certified by the JPSL) for substantially less than its competitors. Your site advised that Hanadama certified only means that the pearls meet a minimum standard and most competitors are only submitting pearls that just pass this standard and sell them at a tremendous markup. You don't do that, which is why you can sell your Hanadama pearls for substantially less. When we spoke on the phone, you personally urged me to spend a few dollars more for your AA necklace and said there is a noticeable difference in quality. I thought I wanted the certainly that Hanadama purportedly guaranteed, so I disregarded your advice and bought the Hanadama. Since the price was so good on the Necklace (which came with matched A graded studs per a coupon), I ordered a AA bracelet separately (to take advantage of different coupons).
The Hanadama necklace wasn't nearly as fine as the strands I had previously seen at Tiffany and wasn't anything like the AA strands I had seen Mikimoto (definitely not Mikimoto AAA quality). When the AA bracelet arrived (a few days after the necklace because of the way I ordered), I compared the AA bracelet to the Hanadama necklace and it was night and day. The American Pearl AA blew the Hanadama away!! I immediately ordered the complete set of AA 7x7.5mm akoyas (which you are selling for an outstanding price) and upgraded the clasps and added two inches to the length of the necklace.
After I received the set, I can tell you that I am a true believer in the value and quality offered by American Pearl. At first, I didn't believe American Pearl's claim that it benchmarked its grades to mikimoto's grading system (which none of your competitors actually do, but claim to do). Apparently, American Pearl does adhere to Mikimoto's high grading standards.
Although I have not yet had a chance to make a head to head comparison between Mikimoto AA pearls and American Pearl AA (putting one strand next to the other), yesterday (12/26/11) my wife and I drove over to Tiffany
from Bellmore, NY