Spinel is often dubbed the ‘jeweller’s gemstone’ because it was relatively unknown outside of the trade despite its impressive beauty. Not only is it found in a wide variety of colours, Spinel has superb colour saturation and clarity which makes it easy to mistake for other stones such as Ruby or Sapphire. In fact, one of the most famous examples of this is the 170 carat red Spinel which is currently the centerpiece of the United Kingdom’s Imperial State Crown. Named the Black Prince Ruby, it dates all the way back to the 14th century.
While Spinel has existed for years, a major spotlight was cast on it in 2007, when a whopping 52 kg of the most spectacular, and now fabled, fiery pink-red Spinel roughs were discovered in Mahenge, Tanzania, reigniting the modern world’s desire for Spinels.
Mahenge is now known as one of the world’s premium sources of vibrant pink Spinel. Spinel is mined in various locations around the world, though some of the finest examples are found especially in Mahenge, Tanzania but also Mogok, Myanmar and Ratnapura, Sri Lanka.