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  • 02/06/13--08:04: Club des Leaders
  • CEO of Forbes Mike Perlis and CIRCA Geneva Director Vivien Yakopin

    In 2010, the Leaders Club was created in Geneva, aiming to bring together personalities holding top positions in finance, luxury, fashion, real-estate, media, politics, arts and International Gotha. Their exclusive lunches are organized in Geneva, London, Paris, and Gstaad, and regularly feature high profile guest speakers.

    Last Monday, January 28th CIRCA was in attendance at the Leaders Club luncheon in Geneva featuring guest speaker Mike Perlis, CEO of Forbes. Mr. Perlis so graciously accepted this speaking engagement on his return home from the World Economic Forum in Davos, sharing with us the history of Forbes and his impressions from the forum.

    Forbes was started by Bertie Charles Forbes in 1917. Having overheard conversations from industrial giants of his time, such as Carnegie, and Rockefeller, he decided to start writing about it so that others could benefit from their knowledge. Forbes is known throughout the world for its famous lists including; World’s Most Powerful People and World’s Billionaires. Although, Mr. Perlis likes to refers to it as “a 96 year old start-up,” now receives 40 million visitors a month.
    His Royal Highness Prince Michel of Yugoslavia, Vivien Yakopin, Mr. Jacques Bonvin

    Mr. Perlis reported on Davos, explaining that after several years of pessimism concerning world economic affairs, the mood has shifted to “cautious optimism.” Additionally, Mr. Perlis discussed the great work achieved by the Swiss charity, Gavi Alliance, funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, a true example of capitalism and philanthropy working together. “Capitalism cannot exist without Philanthropy,” Mr. Perlis stated.

    CIRCA would like to thank Mr. Perlis for hosting such a delightful and informative afternoon!

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  • 02/11/13--10:48: Love is in the Air
  • Valentine’s Day is just around the corner! It’s a time to celebrate and cherish those that you love and a day I’ve come to look forward to!  Whether you’re single, in a new relationship or married forever there are many wonderful ways to celebrate.  If the plans call for simplicity or extravagance, just remember . . . it is the thought counts!

    For all you gentlemen looking for some guidance, here are my top tips to get on her good side this February:

    • Every jewel tells a story - And something sparkly is certainly the ultimate gift on Valentine’s Day!
    • Take her out on the town - An evening out for dinner or cocktails at her favorite spot will show her you treasure quality time together.
    • All ladies have a favorite flower – Send her a special bouquet of her favorite flowers with a hand written note.
    • Feed her sweet tooth – Indulge her with chocolate covered strawberries. Ladies love dessert.
    • Pamper her - A gift certificate to a Dry Bar. This is a fabulous new phenomenon  . . . primping over cocktails – cheers!
    • Pamper one another – A couple’s massage is an intimate and relaxing experience to celebrate one another.


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  • 02/18/13--08:30: Rays of Sunshine
  • During his years in Paris, Duke Fulco Di Verdura joined Coco Chanel assisting in textile design and traveling the world for inspiration.  From this collaboration came Verdura’s most iconic jewelry piece, the Maltese cross cuff. In 1934, Verdura departed to America, where he jumpstarted his career in Hollywood fulfilling the demand for glamorous jewelry. Verdura eventually settled in New York City, opening his first boutique on 5th Avenue.

    As one of the first major designers of the 20th century, Verdura is recognized for innovative design, expertise, craftsmanship and quality gemstones. His creations typically included cabochon gems, diamonds, enamel and yellow gold.

    This particular Verdura “Ray” brooch, recently purchased by CIRCA, is made of yellow gold with a kunzite center stone.

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  • 02/26/13--13:46: Mediterranean Beauty
  • Synonymous with Italian luxury, Bulgari has never forgotten its Greek origins nor been afraid to utilize color, becoming famous for their breathtaking emerald, ruby, sapphire and diamond jewelry. The house has modernized its styles to reflect today’s tastes and was acquired by French conglomerate LVMH for its daring fashion designs.

    The 125 year old company is known for its distinguished jewelry designs, where stones were specifically cut to fit each piece.  This coral, diamond and onyx earrings and brooch set, circa 1950’s – 60’s, uses hand selected materials with flawless technical precision. This suite is 18k yellow gold, set with diamonds and Bulgari’s iconic cabochon cut coral stones. Bulgari jewelry often displays Greek and Roman roots, but most importantly brought a color revolution to the world of jewelry.

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    CIRCA is proud to announce a new partnership with the National Osteoporosis Foundation. On February 26th, CIRCA hosted a Generations of Strength luncheon at the Friars Club. Susan Swimmer, MORE magazine’s Fashion Features Editor and the event's special guest speaker, offered her expert advice on spring fashion trends and spring cleaning, going beyond the home and into the closet and jewelry box.

    To kick-off the partnership, CIRCA’s Acting CEO Mary L. Forté presented NOF Executive Director and CEO Amy Porter with a check for $25,000 to support NOF’s mission of preventing osteoporosis and broken bones and raising awareness for the importance of building strong bones for life. The donation is part of a broad program CIRCA has initiated with NOF that also includes a unique fundraising platform, allowing NOF’s supporters to contribute to the organization through the sale of no longer worn jewelry.

    NOF Executive Director & CEO Amy Porter and CIRCA Acting CEO Mary L. Forté

    “CIRCA is honored to support the National Osteoporosis Foundation, an organization that has made tremendous strides in the education and prevention of osteoporosis, helping millions of women lead happier, healthier lives,” said Mary L. Forté,  CIRCA’s Acting CEO. “The alignment is a natural fit, and we are very excited to build on our initial gift by offering an innovative fundraising platform to NOF’s supporters.”  

    Now through the end of May, 2013, National Osteoporosis Awareness Month, CIRCA will donate 10 percent of the price of all jewelry purchased from clients who mention the NOF partnership, up to $100,000, to the organization.

    For more information about this partnership or to schedule an appointment, call 855.741.6138 or visit our website
    Guest speaker, MORE Fashion Features Editor, Susan Swimmer

    Jayne Conway, Susan Swimmer, Mary L. Forté, Natasha Cornstein
    NOF's Claire Gill, Amy Porter and Kelly Austin

    Images: Courtesy of Patrick McMullan, Amber De Vos.

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  • 03/05/13--11:48: Hollywood Correspondent
  • CIRCA Beverly Hills Director, Wes Carroll

    Jewelery starred at the 85th Annual Academy Awards. The red carpet was lined up with ensembles hot off the runway and trends that have jewelry enthusiasts raving. The Oscars usher in the Crème de la Crème of Hollywood, and every season I look forward to the gowns, the gossip, and of course the gems! Here are a few of my top picks this year!

    Dripping in Diamonds:
    Jennifer Garner was simply stunning in a plum Gucci peplum gown with a spectacular Neil Lane darkened platinum and diamond necklace. Promoting sustainability, Helen Hunt wore an H&M Global Green dress paired with amazing Martin Katz necklace and stacking bracelets. Zoe Saldana chose a dress fresh off the runway by Alexis Mabille delicately accessorized with beautiful Neil Lane diamond and pear shaped pearl drop earrings.

    The Backwards Necklace:
    Breaking conventions was very trendy on the red carpet this season. I particularly loved the use of the backward necklaces seen on Jennifer Lawrence in a Chopard and Anne Hathaway in Tiffany & Co.

    Sparkles & Studs:
    Sparkles were all over the red carpet, but my favorites were those with strategic embellishments like Salma Hayek’s dark blue velvet Alexander McQueen with a gold  high neck and  Kerry Washington’s bejeweled red Miu Miu. Catherine Zeta Jones glittered in a stunning Zuhair Murad couture gown with gold Art Deco swirls, channeling the Oscar himself. Stacy Keibler went “Old Hollywood” with an updo, silver studded Naeem Khan gown and Lorraine Schwartz jewelry.

    The Dramatic & Demure:
    As Cinderella for the evening, Amy Adams wore a beautiful powder blue Oscar de la Renta and Mouaward diamond earrings and statement diamond bracelet. Charlize Theron was sexy and striking in a stark white Dior Haute Couture form-fitting gown with Harry Winston diamond bracelets. Best Actress Winner, Jennifer Lawrence, also in Dior Haute Couture, wore a cream color gown with an oversized structured skirt. I loved the dramatic look yet soft touch of the fabric.

    The Hair Accessory:
    The hair pin is very feminine and elegant accessory. Sandra Bullock chose a beautiful Elie Saab gown and  gracefully pinned her hair on one side with a diamond cluster brooch and accessorized with Harry Winston diamond jewelry. Salma Hayek pinned her thick dark locks in an oversized bun and topped it off with Cindy Chao’s maple leaf choker as a tiara. Tres chic!

    Congratulations to all the Oscar winners!

    Images: Courtesy of Instyle, Elle, Gotceleb, Huffington Post, JustJared.

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  • 03/07/13--10:11: Shine Bright Like A Diamond
  • Van Cleef and Arpels is known for its iconic pieces ranging from the Two Butterfly collection to the Alhambra collection, but has always had an affinity for abstract and geometric designs. This particular necklace, circa 1950s, displays the craftsmanship and design elements that mark a piece as VCA, as well as the expertise of sourcing beautiful stones. The juxtaposition of different diamond cuts creates a dynamic and intricate look, while emphasizing the impression of stones floating in space.

    This necklace includes beautifully graduated baguettes, with scroll-like shoulders as well as hexagonal, old European, and round brilliant diamonds. Each diamond on the extended pendants is set on a knife edge element to create the essence of “floating.” A statement bib- necklace such as this would be an elegant accessory to a lower cut evening gown.

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  • 03/12/13--15:08: CIRCA Sightings
  • The CIRCA Beverly Hills team attendedExperience Bouchon Bistro hosted by the Chamber of Commerce last Monday, March 11th. Experience Bouchon is a progressive dining experience customized to showcase Chef Thomas Keller and his team: Sebastien Rouxel, Executive Pastry Chef of Thomas Keller; David Hands, Chef de Cuisine Bouchon Bistro; Alen Ramos, Pastry Chef Bouchon Bistro; and Carolyn Ramos, Pastry Chef & Bouchon Bakery Manager. Over 400 guests sampled treats from these masters at a variety of food stations and kitchen tours along with elaborate food demonstrations. Bon Appetit!

    CIRCA Beverly Hills Director Wes Carroll and Buyer Adriana Pearson represented the CIRCA team (pictured above with Chef Thomas Keller) and rubbed elbows with friends from the jewelry and luxury industry, such as Jim Jehant from Brooks Brothers and Scott Green from Van Cleef & Arpels. Sponsors included Rothstein Kass, Torrey Pines Bank and Wells Fargo Private Bank, as well as Moet & Chandon providing an additional Champagne experience. Cheers!

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    This St Patrick’s Day, CIRCA is celebrating the best way we know how: with emeralds.

    The emerald isles of Ireland may be known for shamrocks and clovers, but that same green can be found in some of our favorite jewelry. Emeralds are found all over the world, but ironically not in Ireland. The best of the best, however, come from the Muzo mine in Colombia. Famous for that iconic color, the mine has been producing stones for hundreds of years. From Cleopatra to Elizabeth Taylor, countless women have fallen for this timeless stone.

    These Bulgari earrings from the 1980’s are a classic example of design in the era of excess. Big and bold, the bright colors of the emerald and sapphires contrast beautifully with the clean brilliance of diamonds. This style’s striking contrast fits perfectly with today’s color block trend.  Since emerald is Pantone’s color for 2013, it’s the perfect way to enjoy St. Patricks’s Day in style.

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    Name: Angelina Chen, Senior Director, CIRCA New York & Hong Kong
    Current hometown: New York City

    Share with us some of your hidden gems in New York City & Hong Kong.

    New York:
    Hong Kong:

    • Favorite Restaurant: The Chairman
    • Favorite Store: All the antique shops on Hollywood Road
    • Favorite tourist attraction: The Star Ferry
    CIRCA provides immediate payment to clients to put towards new opportunities every day. Do you have a favorite story a client has shared with you? A new purchase? A trip?

    A favorite client of mine sold to CIRCA a fancy intense blue diamond and speculated on a price of property in Hong Kong’s very hot real estate market. She has since profited from her investment!

    Over 300 pieces of jewelry comes through CIRCA’s doors daily. Tell us about your favorite or most significant piece(s) of jewelry you’ve purchased.

    My absolute favorite piece I’ve purchased was this exquisite Cartier Deco Tutti Frutti clip.

    If you could purchase any piece of jewelry or watch in the world, what would it be?

    My birthstone, a beautiful ruby!

    Do you have a favorite jewelry period or designer?

    I love late Art Deco, Retro and Pre-WWII jewelry.

    What do you feel best wearing? Do you have a go to outfit?

    I feel most comfortable in Celine or Calvin Klein outfits, they fit me like a glove.


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    Model Evy wearing CIRCA auction items & Ruth Thuston
    CIRCA was proud to sponsor the opening gala celebrating the Chicago History Museum’s newest exhibition Inspiring Beauty: 50 Years of Ebony Fashion Fair. The exhibition pays tribute to long-time leadership, producer and director Eunice Walker Johnson of Chicago’s Johnson Publishing Company and Co-founder of Ebony Magazine, who brought European fashion to the African American community. The impressive 7,000-square-foot exhibition, curated by Joy Bivins, features looks by iconic fashion designers like Yves Saint-Laurent, Christian Dior, Oscar de la Renta, Pierre Cardin, Emanuel Ungaro, and Patrick Kelly among others.

    Guests got a sneak peek of this fabulous exhibition followed by dinner, dancing and a live auction! CIRCA donated this fabulous Cartier“Diadea” 18k white gold ring, with a total carat weight of 1.65 diamonds set en tremblant as well as a Buccellati“Classica” 18k yellow gold 10 diamond hinged bangle raising over $19,000!

    Congratulations to the Costume Council and Honorary Chair of the Costume Ball, Linda Johnson Rice for this landmark exhibition!
    Buccellati "Classica" & Cartier "Diadea"

    Contact CIRCA Chicago (312.787.8588, The John Hancock Center, 875 North Michigan Avenue, Suite 2540) to further support the Costume Council of the Chicago History Museum. When selling the jewelry you no longer wear to CIRCA, simply mention this sponsorship and 10% of the purchase value will be donated to the organization through March 15, 2014.
    Ruth Thuston & Linda Johnson Rice (Chairman Johnson Publishing)    
    Ruth Thuston with Bill Zwecker (Sun Times) & Hamish Bowles (Vogue)    
    Ruth Thuston with Luke Reese & Catherine Eberle (Costume Council Executive Board Member)
    Ruth Thuston & Diane Sprenger (Costume Council Executive Board Member)

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    Fashion By The Numbers
    Spring 2013
    By Susan Swimmer

    5 Instant Wardrobe Updates

    1. A day clutch. Make sure it’s oversized, either in a bold color or maybe in an exotic (faux or real) skin.
    2. An edgy shoe. Either a heel or a flat, with hardware detail like studs, grommets or spikes.
    3. A piece of statement jewelry. A glam necklace in mixed metals and stones, a gigantic cocktail ring, a dramatic wide cuff.
    4. A chic pool/beach look. You need a swim suit with support, a gorgeous cover up, grown up jelly sandals and a chic tote. Also to note: New this season, Celine is doing a gorgeous collection of suits for Eres.
    5. A peplum top. It is the GREAT camouflager! Find one with sleeves or without (your choice) and wear alone or under a blazer or cardigan.

    4 Great Pieces of Advice

    1. Buy What Fits NOW…not what will fit when you lose 5 pounds.
    2. Spend on wear-with-all’s, save on one off’s.
    3. Subscribe to the 70/30 rule of closet keeping: You should be able to wear 70% of your clothes all the time, and 30% of your wardrobe should be reserved for special occasions. Do not save clothes! A sequin top with cargo pants? Yes!
    4. Dress top heavy—that is to say, frame your face with something fabulous—a great color, a blouse with an interesting neckline, fabulous necklace and earrings—because you spend your life being looked at from the waist, up (sitting at a dining table, in a crowd at a cocktail party).

    3 Fashion Myths

    1.    You have to spend a lot to look rich. Nope, you just have to choose wisely. Dress high/low—if it’s good enough for Mrs. Obama, it’s good enough for us! The tailored pieces should be well made and of luxe fabric, the pops of color or print can be inexpensive. When someone asks what you’re wearing, just tell them it’s Balenciaga!
    2.    If you have a great body, you can wear anything. Nope, and you see it on the street every day. Face it, we live in a world where 20 year olds with great bodies have muffin tops, so clearly anyone can get it wrong. It’s all about getting the fit right.
    3.    When in doubt, wear black. Nope, a burst of color can wake up your mood and brighten your face in an instant.

    2 Undergarments to Own

    1.    Spanx Slim Cognito bike short body suit—it’ll smooth you out in all the right places.
    2.    Vanity Fair Back Smoothing Bra—I’ve tried it with everything from T-shirts to ribbed sweaters and it’s life changing.

    1 Thing I know for sure

    If you don’t feel good, it doesn’t look good.

    Susan Swimmer is the Fashion Features Editor at More magazine, where she writes about fashion, celebrities and pop culture and also runs all of the fashion and style content for Prior to joining More, Ms. Swimmer was the Features Editor-at-Large at Marie Claire magazine, where she covered celebrity and pop culture. She has held staff positions at Seventeen and Self, and from 2004-2005 she wrote the monthly column, “My Life As A Mom,” for Ladies’ Home Journal.

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    Name: Annie Falk

    Current hometown(s): Palm Beach, New York, Southampton

    Congratulations on your recent book, Palm Beach Entertaining: Creating Occasions to Remember!  Tell us about your book and top tips?

    Thank you!  I am so excited about this book, a project that has been a blessing from the start!  I invited my friends, Victoria Amory, Aime Dunstan and Daphne Nikolopoulous to join me in creating this book and we had great fun working on it!   Everyone generously donated their time and talent; and our generous friends in Palm Beach opened their homes and hearths to us.  We created something very unique. A cookbook, yes, but one that includes wonderful photos to inspire your next tablescape, tips and anecdotes on party giving and stories about the hosts and hostesses we feature, including trend setter’s Beth DeWoody, Kara Ross andCelerie Kemble; style icons like Arnold Scaasi and polo player Nic Roldan.  We also have a section called Host Selections that includes our host and hostesses’ go to sources for everything from flowers to stationery. 

    Some of my favorite tips from the book:

    •    “Serve good food that you know people will enjoy.  Who doesn’t like chocolate cake?” ~ Beth DeWoody
    •    “When planning your dinner, think of the five senses, and appeal to all of them.” ~ Nadine Kalachnikoff & Lars Bolander
    •    “Use recipes that you trust and are crowd-pleasers.” ~ Kathryn Vecellio   
    •    “Put together an interesting group of people who will enjoy talking to each other, and mix young and old.” ~ Talbott Maxey & Kit Pannill

    As you may know, all the proceeds benefit the Children’s Home Society of Florida and the families it serves.  Please check out their website if you want to learn more. 

    Palm Beach Entertaining is available at most bookstores and online at

    An integral part of CIRCA’s culture is philanthropy, and there is nothing more gratifying than the opportunity to help others. Tell us about your involvement with The Palm Beach Police Foundation.

    I joined the board of trustees two years ago and I have chaired the past two annual galas in Palm Beach.  I love planning events and the PBPF Gala is the most fun, well-attended on the island.  Everyone comes out for the men and women in blue!  The mission of the foundation is to enrich the lives of the police officers and civilian employees of the Palm Beach Police department and their families.  Monies raised go toward the purchase of cutting edge equipment, supplemental training of police officers, funding of educational scholarships for qualified children of department employees and toward offering emergency financial assistance to officers injured or disabled in the line of duty, as well as to support Palm Beach Crime Watch in its mission to maintain a police-community partnership to reduce crime.

    The peace and serenity we enjoy here in Palm Beach allows a quality of life that is immeasurable and is attained through an unprecedented police-community relationship.  The efforts of the Palm Beach Police Foundation help ensure that collaboration endures, and I am honored to be a part of it.

    What advice would you offer to aspiring philanthropists?

    Follow your heart!  Giving of oneself if the greatest gift you can offer humanity; so whatever talents you possess, offer them to those in need.  You will be sure to find and engage in work that will nourish your spirit.

    At CIRCA, we believe every jewel tells a story. Tell us about your favorite or most significant piece of jewelry.

    I have so many favorites and a few significant pieces, but the one item I wear all the time is my Tiffany stainless steel tank watch.   On 9/11 when I, like many New Yorker’s, was fleeing my apartment, I took some files that I knew held irreplaceable documents.  I later discovered that mixed in those files were a few gift certificates for Tiffany’s and I couldn’t remember putting them there or why I hadn’t used them.  I promised myself that if I were able to safely return to my home in NY, one of the first stops I would make would be Tiffany’s and I’d buy myself a watch to serve as a reminder of how precious time is and how important it is to make the best of every day, every minute and every encounter.
    Do you have a style icon that has influenced you?

    Hubert Hermes, once said to me taste is made from a lot of bad taste.  Of course it sounds much more beautiful in French.  Essentially, he said, a woman needs to know what she absolutely does not like in order to determine what she loves.  This rule applies to dressing yourself, decorating your home, dressing your tables for an intimate dinner and choosing the art with witch your surround yourself.   I have always gravitated toward things elegant and feminine yet faintly sexy.  My style icons are Audrey Hepburn, Natalie Wood and Consuelo, Duchess of Marlborough.  I am attracted to Paul César Helleu’s famous portrait of the Duchess as it represents an age of elegance; a style and grace that are reflected in one’s choice of clothing, comportment and surroundings.

    What do you feel best wearing? Do you have a go to outfit?

    I feel most comfortable in a dress or a halter top jumpsuit (so glad they keep coming back in style). This season I wore my Cavalli snake print stretch-jersey dress over and over again.  It is so comfortable and by changing accessories or adding a sweater it never looked like the same dress.
     Do you have a current favorite designer(s)?

    Last week, before leaving for Cuba, I literally raided Calypso St. Barth.  Their pieces are unique and feminine and so effortless.  Inspired by travel it is no wonder their things travel so well ~ I packed 10 dresses and still got away with one bag!  I know I will wear some of those pieces in Palm Beach as it warms up and others in Southampton this summer.

    My closet is full of things by Oscar and by my friend, Carmen Marc Valvo; two of my favorite designers.  I have some classic Chanel that I will never get rid of and have worn for years and know I will wear for years to come.  When our economic fluctuations paralyzed so many talented designers I started gravitating toward vintage.  Now, it seems the economy is turning and there is so much excitement on the runway.  I have my eye on a few fall pieces I can’t wait to try on.   

    I love Kara Ross’s new bags.  The lines and hardware are elegant and classic but the colors and skins are young, fun and sexy.  Most of my new bags are by Kara.

    I am dressing my table exclusively in Kim Seybert (always classic and elegant), L’Objet and some wonderful pieces I found at a few fabulous vintage shops in Palm Beach.

    Favorite handbag or pair of shoes?

    My favorite bag is my waiving cat by Judith Leiber.  Shoes ~ any pair of platforms!  I remember when platforms were hot in the 70’s and my mom only allowed me to own one pair.   So, when the platform came back I went crazy!  Cant’ get enough.  I love YSL’s tribute sandals.  They are so comfortable and easy to wear and come in every color you can imagine.

    We all make impulse purchases – Any regrets or mistakes?

    Many! But, thankfully vintage boutiques are really hot in the U.S. so after an impulse piece has sat in my closet for a few seasons I drop it off at one of my favorite vintage shops.  My most recent drop off included a turtle neck, polka dot dress.  What was I thinking?

    Share with us some of your hidden gems in Palm Beach.  (restaurants, favorite stores/services):

    Sunday breakfast at the Colony with my dog!  During the week, lunch at Café Boulud in the garden, dinner at La Sirena any time!  Cappuccino at Blue Provence, where I can also pick up a few things for dinner while browsing the owner’s vintage finds and new tabletop pieces.  Tucked in the back of Via Gucci on Worth Ave. is a lovely new Italian restaurant, Via Flora, having dinner by candlelight transports you to the Amalfi coast.  I love Mary Mahoney’s!  Be sure to ask about her custom made linens.  A stop at CIRCA is a must during season.  Nestled away in the Palm Beach towers,  CIRCA's offices are elegant, welcoming and private.  The perfect environment to decide whether or not to sell that statement piece that no longer makes a statement.  Of course, Neiman Marcus and Calypso St. Barth for clothes and accessories.  Try Kassatly's for fine linens and clothes; I found a wonderful jacket for my husband, a reversible rain jacket. He never travels without it.

    Selling jewelry to CIRCA provides immediate payment to put towards new opportunities. What would be next on your list? A new purchase? A trip?

    Since I just returned from Cuba and saw a lot of wonderful art, next on my list would be something fabulous by a Cuban artist.   In particular, I have my eye on a whimsical sculpture for my Garden in Southampton.

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  • 04/11/13--14:18: Fit for a Queen

  • At CIRCA we revel in jewelry and watch history. Among many storied firms, Breguet may have the most compelling heritage, and a royal pedigree to match. Founded in 1775 in Paris, Abraham-Louis Breguet quickly established himself as an innovator of the highest order. His revolutionary design of the tourbillon, a mechanism that helps a chronograph keep time despite gravity and other factors, earned him a place in history and an elite clientele. Marie Antoinette and George Washington both owned Breguet timepieces, along with numerous heads of state.

    This proud tradition of catering to royalty has become an integral part of Breguet’s legacy. This watch is named for another famous patron, La Reine de Naples, or Queen of Naples. It was this queen who commissioned a wristwatch from Breguet in 1810, putting the firm on the map for yet another innovation. Two hundred years later, Breguet’ craftsmen made the watch pictured here to honor this historic achievement.  In 18k white gold and set with one hundred and thirty nine diamonds, it certainly lives up to its name. The blue strap is a nod both to Breguet’s signature color and that of several royal houses.

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  • 04/18/13--09:22: Downton Chic
  • The Edwardian era may be a hundred years behind us, but the style it inspired is still going strong.   The moment plays a part on both the big and small screens in productions like ‘Titanic’ and ‘Downton Abbey’. While the reign of King Edward VII of England lasted only from 1901-1910, many consider the era to range from the beginning of the new century to the start of WWI. It was an era of dramatic changes in social convention, including the women’s suffrage movement in England and growing political tensions among European countries. After the dark, heavy mourning jewelry of the preceding Victorian era, people were ready for something new. Light, romantic and supremely feminine, Edwardian jewelry matched the spirit of the new century.

    While Edwardian jewelry showcases exquisite diamonds, it isn’t known for dramatic color. Diamonds and pale hued stones were utilized the most, creating a romantic, ultra feminine look under candlelight. Platinum was saw-pierced to create a delicate framework for multiple stones in a single piece. Taking shape in swags and garlands, the new style adorned the period’s elite. Wreaths, ribbons and bows were also popular motifs. This brooch is a perfect example of the best of the Edwardian era. Lady Mary of ‘Downton Abbey’ would be jealous.

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    Name: Rosemary Leung, Director of CIRCA Hong Kong

    Current hometown: Hong Kong

    Share with us some of your hidden gems in Hong Kong:

    •    Favorite Restaurant: Isola at IFC and Cafe Grey  at The Upper House in Hong Kong - great food,
         great view, great ambiance.
    •    Favorite Store: Chanel - very enjoyable experience with great customer service, always.
    •    Favorite tourist attraction: Stanley Market - market shopping plus the beach!

    CIRCA provides immediate payment to clients to put towards new opportunities every day. Do you have a favorite story a client has shared with you? A new purchase? A trip?

    Often my clients say with a big smile "I am off to shop!"  Many of them come to sell their diamonds for an upgrade; or sell their small faced watches in favor of trendier, large faced watches.

    Over 300 pieces of jewelry comes through CIRCA’s doors daily. Tell us about your favorite or most significant piece(s) of jewelry you’ve purchased.

    I recently purchased a stunning Van Cleef & Arpels between-the-finger ring with diamonds and pearls – it was so elegant! The ring was among forty other signed pieces I purchased from my client that afternoon.

    If you could purchase any piece of jewelry or watch in the world, what would it be?

    An Art Deco piece by Cartier.

    Do you have a favorite jewelry period or designer?

    Art Deco& Edwardian.

    What do you feel best wearing?

    A little black dress.

    Do you have a go to outfit?

    I like plain, simple and comfortable.  Accessories, jewelry and a pair of beautifully made shoes create a "total look".

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  • 04/26/13--06:43: Spring Awakens
  • This time of year our connection to nature feels stronger than ever.  After a long slog through winter, the sunlight lasts longer, the trees are blossoming, and we’re reminded in the North that being outside can be delightful.  It’s no coincidence that in spring we celebrate Earth Week along with the resurgence of the natural world around us. In this spirit CIRCA is honoring the season and the Earth by supporting The Horticultural Society of New York.

    Founded in 1902, the Horticultural Society of New York has enjoyed a long relationship with the jewelry world, starting with the patronage of co-founder Louis Comfort Tiffany.  The HORT’s mission to preserve the connection between people and planet mirrors CIRCA’s commitment to environmental responsibility.  At CIRCA, we practice sustainability every day - each diamond or unworn piece of jewelry that someone sells to CIRCA is put back into the marketplace for another to wear andenjoy.

    It’s why we’re proud to sponsor the HORT and their efforts. After all, nature is not only the source of the metals and gems that make up the jewelry we love, but the inspiration for it as well.  We salute The HORT for making the world a more beautiful place for all New Yorkers. 

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    Join CIRCA in supporting the NationalOsteoporosis Foundations and our efforts to raise awareness and curb the rising trend of this disease. 

    The NOF Recommends 5 Things You Can Do to Break Free from Osteoporosis.


    1. Get to know your risk factors: According to NOF’s recently released prevalence data, 9 million adults in the U.S. have osteoporosis and more than 48 million have low bone mass, placing them at increased risk for osteoporosis and broken bones. Many factors play a role in your risk for osteoporosis, including age, gender, lifestyle, medical history, family history and whether you take any medication or have medical conditions that can lead to bone loss. To better understand your risk, talk to your healthcare provider about all of the factors above and ask what you can start doing today to reduce your risk of getting the disease.

    2. Get active: Regular weight-bearing and muscle-strengthening exercise is one of the best ways to protect against osteoporosis and broken bones. Throughout May, Barbara Hannah Grufferman, a healthy aging  expert and one of NOF’s Bone Health Ambassadors, is releasing a new video each week highlighting an exercise you can add to your routine to build and maintain stronger bones. Visit to keep up with Barbara’s weekly video series and try the exercises with her at home.*

    3. Try a bone healthy recipe: Calcium, vitamin D, lean protein, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats are the key to eating for healthy bones.

    4. Clean out your jewelry box to support NOF: Break free from jewelry you no longer wear by selling it to our partners at CIRCA, the leading international buyer of fine jewelry, diamonds and watches. CIRCA is supporting National Osteoporosis Month by donating 10 percent of the jewelry purchase value for those who mention NOF through the end of May. Visit to find a CIRCA location near you.

    5. Attend an educational event to learn more about osteoporosis:
    Attend an NOF event in your area to meet leading experts on osteoporosis and get answers to your personal questions on diet, exercise, effective treatments and more. Visit our calendar of events to see what we have planned during May.  And if we don’t have an event in your area, use our toolkit of resources and information to plan an osteoporosis educational event of your own.

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    Name: Amy Porter

    Hometown: Washington, DC

    Q: Tell us a little about osteoporosis. What is it and how many people are affected?

    A: Osteoporosis is a disease that makes your bones weak and more likely to break. Since you can’t feel your bones getting weaker, many people don’t know they have osteoporosis until they break a bone. It’s very common –one in two women and up to one in four men over age 50 will break a bone due to osteoporosis in their lifetime.

    Q: What does the National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF) do to support those with osteoporosis?

    A:  NOF is the leading health organization dedicated to preventing osteoporosis and broken bones and promoting the importance of building strong bones for life. We work to achieve our mission through research, advocacy and education programs for both the public and healthcare providers. To determine the true number of people affected by osteoporosis, we recently commissioned a prevalence study that estimates 9 million adults in the U.S. currently have osteoporosis and more than 48 million have low bone mass, placing them at increased risk for osteoporosis and broken bones.

    To protect those at-risk, we’ve launched Break Free from Osteoporosis – a national awareness campaign encouraging the public to get to know their risk factors for osteoporosis and make the lifestyle changes needed to build and maintain strong bones. May is National Osteoporosis Month and we hope everyone will join us in taking action against osteoporosis this month.

    Q: What are the risk factors for osteoporosis?

    A:  Many factors play a role in your risk for osteoporosis. Your age, gender, lifestyle, medical history, family history and whether you take medications or have medical conditions that can lead to bone loss all play a role in determining your risk for the disease. Talking to your healthcare provider about all of the factors above is the best way to determine your risk for osteoporosis. The good news is, osteoporosis is avoidable for many of those at risk, so by talking to your doctor and making the changes needed to your diet and exercise routine, you can protect your bones.

    Q: When you say diet and exercise, what should we eat and what exercises are best for bone health?

      A diet rich in calcium, vitamin D, lean protein, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats is the key to eating for healthy bones. And when it comes to exercise, both weight-bearing and muscle-strengthening exercises are important for building and maintaining your bone density. Weight-bearing exercises make you move against gravity while staying upright and include: dancing, hiking, jogging/running, fast walking. Muscle-strengthening exercises are when you move your body, a weight or some other resistance against gravity and include lifting weights, using weight machines or elastic exercise bands or even lifting your own body weight.

    Q: There’s been a lot of conflicting information in the news lately about calcium and vitamin D. What does NOF recommend?

    A:  We commissioned our own research to look into the tie between calcium and heart disease and found no increased risk of heart disease among women taking calcium supplements. But as always, we recommend that you aim to get the recommended daily amount of calcium you need from food first and supplement only as needed to make up for any shortfall. Vitamin D is harder to get from food, so you may need to take a supplement to get the recommended amount of vitamin D.

    NOF recommends that women age 50 and younger get 1,000 mg of calcium from all sources daily and that women age 51 and older get 1,200 mg. For men, we recommend 1,000 mg of calcium daily for those age 70 and younger and 1,200 mg for men age 71 and older. When it comes to vitamin D, we recommend 400-800 international units (IU) for adults under age 50 and 800-1,000 IU for adults age 50 and older.

    Q: Tell us more about Break Free from Osteoporosis. How can we get involved?

    A:  Break Free from Osteoporosis is the new national awareness campaign we launched for National Osteoporosis Month. In response to our new prevalence data showing 57 million Americans have or are at risk for osteoporosis, we’re using the campaign to issue a call to action for the public to get to know their risk factors and make lifestyle changes to prevent the disease. From trying a new bone healthy recipe to adding a new exercise to your regular routine, we’re working with several partners to showcase all the different ways you can take action to protect your bones this month.

    Thanks to our partnership with CIRCA, you can also support NOF by selling jewelry you no longer wear this month. CIRCA is generously supporting National Osteoporosis Month by donating 10 percent of the jewelry purchase value from clients who mention the NOF partnership through the end of May. So, whether it’s jewelry that’s longer your style or an earring missing its pair, please clean out your jewelry box this month and be sure to mention NOF to support our efforts.

    Q: Who are the partners you’re working with?

    A: Barbara Hannah Grufferman, a healthy aging  expert and one of our Bone Health Ambassadors, is a regular columnist for and all month she’ll be releasing a new video each week highlighting an exercise you can add to your routine to build and maintain strong  bones. Each video is short – no longer than three minutes – and shows Barbara demonstrating an exercise you can try with her at home. Of course, always check with your doctor before starting any new exercise program.

    We’ve also teamed up with five of America’s top chefs and had them create new recipes that meet our bone healthy recipe criteria. All of the recipes sound amazing and are posted on our website for everyone to try. Visit the site to see the chefs we’re working with and try your hand at their recipes.

    Q: What do you suggest for those looking to connect with NOF and help your efforts?

    A:  Please contact us and based on your interests and background, we’ll find a way for you to get involved and help. To curb the rising incidence of osteoporosis and broken bones, we’re always looking to grow our team. From donating to the organization, to starting a support group or sharing your story with others, there are many ways to get involved. Visit us at or call (800) 231-4222 to learn more.

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  • 05/08/13--09:40: Pretty in Punk
  • This year the Metropolitan Museum’s annual Costume Institute Gala celebrated the new exhibit PUNK: Chaos to Couture. The Gala is the perfect opportunity for every starlet to make a showstopping statement. The stars in attendance Monday night did not disappoint, pairing edgy style with impeccable taste to great effect. Here are some of our favorites:

    Rock Goddess


    Perennial style icon Sarah Jessica Parker sets the tone for punk inspired couture at the Met Gala in a Giles Deacon dress, Philip Treacy punk couture headpiece, Fred Leighton and Repossi jewelry.

    Full on Fashion

    The looks Monday night featured some gorgeous jewelry, with layered bangles, dramatic earrings and massive rings taking center stage. 

    Right on trend with bold stripes, Chanel Iman pairs stacks of black and white diamond bangles from Lorraine Schwartz and a graphic J Mendel dress.  Anja Rubik brought back eighties glam in a major way with red leather and Chopard diamonds.



    Here Jennifer Lopez sports Michael Kors dress and Rona Pfeiffer jewelry, while Miley Cyrus is wearing a Marc Jacobs dress with Eddie Borgo jewelry. Nicole Richie sports a custom Topshop dress and Maria Francesca Pepe ring and Dana Rebecca Designs earrings.

    Bare Essentials

    Punk may be known for safety pins and grit, but at the Met Gala these stars elevated the theme to another level. While gorgeous gems were on display, sometimes the boldest look is to wear no jewelry at all. Below, some examples of actresses who chose to flaunt strategic skin- and not much else.



    Rooney Mara, wearing Riccardo Tisci, and Kristen Stewart in a Stella McCartney jumpsuit.

    The exhibit PUNK: Chaos to Coutureruns at the Metropolitan Museum of Art through August 14th. Post in the comments below to share your favorite looks from last night’s Gala!

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  • 05/10/13--15:24: Mother Love

  • It's not easy being a mother. If it were easy, fathers would do it.
    - Mark Twain

    Jewelry plays an important part in lots of events, but Mother’s Day may be the jewelry holiday.  This Sunday lots of moms will be receiving big gifts and small packages. However Mother’s Day jewelry giving has us thinking about the women behind the presents- women who play the part of both jewelry designer and mother.

    Moms are a major factor in the realm of jewelry. From high powered style mavens like Victoire de Castellane at Dior, to purveyors of perennial classics like Monica Kosann, moms make the jewelry world go round.  Ippolita Rostagno, head of the eponymous brand, also manages to balance motherhood and the challenge of an international jewelry firm. Pictured below is another mother’s creation, earrings in 18 karat gold with turquoise and diamonds by Cathy Waterman. Her aesthetic appeals to the modern woman, and moms in particular: elegant, wearable and romantic.

    Mother’s Day has as many unique meanings as there are mothers and children. How are you going to celebrate Mom this weekend? What is your top Mother’s Day moment? Share your favorites in the comments below.

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    The Great Gatsby may be the closest thing we have to the great American novel, but the classic story of excess and tragedy was made for the silver screen. It was barely a year after it was published in 1925 that it was first captured on film. Since then practically every generation has reinterpreted the Deco era tale for their own time. Released on May 10th, Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby reflects the Jazz Age and our own.

    Key to the story’s staying power is the design of the period it evokes. The 1920’s left a permanent mark on the American psyche and style, and remains a rich resource for designers to mine for inspiration. The new Gatsby relied on Brooks Brothers and Prada for costumes evocative of the period, and Tiffany & Co. created jewelry based on archival pieces (see actress Carey Mulligan modeling the look below).

    Which is not to say these designers have cornered the market when it comes to Deco. Pictured above is a classic example of Art Deco excellence, executed by an unknown maker in platinum, sapphire and diamonds. The strong, clean geometric lines create an iconic Jazz Age look. Featuring the quintessential 1920’s diamond cut, an Asscher weighing in at over 5 carats, this ring proves Deco style is just as beautiful today as it the day it was made.

    Almost a hundred years later this aesthetic still resonates with design lovers everywhere. How do you make Art Deco style your own in 2013?

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  • 05/23/13--14:32: A Star Is Born

  • Tuesday night CIRCA celebrated the grand opening of our Beverly Hills office in style! CIRCA Co-founder Jeffrey Singer and CIRCA Beverly Hills Director Wes Carroll were joined at the glamorous opening and ribbon cutting ceremony by notable guests including art connoisseur Kay Saatchi, Oscar nominated actress Shohreh Aghadashloo, world renowned photographer Matthew Ralston, celebrity stylist Deb Waknin, philanthropist Tobey Cotsen Victor, contemporary artist Yassi Castilla, Montage Hotel Ambassador Frank Bowling, top Beverly Hills realtor Chuck Dembo and Steve Fraenkel and Beverly Hills Council Member Nancy Krasne.

    Here Wes Carroll shows Council Member Krasne jewelry recently purchased from CIRCA clients around the world, including a vintage Van Cleef and Arpels bracelet, Bulgari necklace and a Seaman Schepps brooch. 

    Congratulations to Wes and the entire Beverly Hills team! Best wishes as you continue the CIRCA tradition of providing expert jewelry buying advice and impeccable client service in your new home.

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  • 05/25/13--12:05: Star Spangled
  • With Memorial Day around the corner we’re all looking forward to barbeques and a long weekend. But it’s not just an extra Monday off; it’s an opportunity to honor the service men and women who serve us around the world. It’s a moment to appreciate veterans, both past and present, for their efforts and sacrifices.

    As the tune goes, stars and stripes forever! Pictured above is the grand old flag set in white gold, sapphires, diamonds and rubies. It’s a perfect way to show your support.

    There may not be a more fitting way to honor fallen American warriors than with the words written by Abraham Lincoln to a grieving mother:

    Executive Mansion,
    Washington, Nov. 21, 1864.

    Dear Madam,

    I have been shown in the files of the War Department a statement of the Adjutant General of Massachusetts that you are the mother of five sons who have died gloriously on the field of battle. I feel how weak and fruitless must be any word of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering you the consolation that may be found in the thanks of the Republic they died to save. I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom.

    Yours, very sincerely and respectfully,

            A. Lincoln

    We are fortunate to be able to rely on the men and women of the armed forces. How are you honoring them this weekend?

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    Name: Wes Carroll

    Current hometown: Beverly Hills, California

    Share with us some of your hidden gems in Los Angeles:

    * Favorite Restaurant: The Little Door
    * Favorite Store: Obsolete Antiques
    * Favorite tourist attraction: The new Getty Museum 

    CIRCA provides immediate payment to clients to put towards new opportunities every day. Do you have a favorite story a client has shared with you? 

    I had a young couple who had inherited some jewelry from their parents. The jewelry was from the 1950’s/60’s and they felt it was relatively worthless but wanted to check with CIRCA just to see. After the evaluation, I told them that our offer was $5200. They had heard $520 and were very excited. I reiterated that it was not $520, but $5,200 and they were speechless.

    Over 300 pieces of jewelry comes through CIRCA’s doors daily. Tell us about your favorite or most significant piece(s) of jewelry you’ve purchased. 

    My favorite piece I’ve purchased was an Art Deco Cartier Onyx, Coral, Crystal and Diamond Brooche. The jewelry created by Cartier in the 20’s & 30’s was not only breathtaking, but beautifully handcrafted and highly collectable.

    If you could purchase any piece of jewelry or watch in the world, what would it be?

    I would love to purchase the scepter currently held in the British Crown jewels. The Queen uses the scepter for very special occasions (coronations, etc) which currently holds the largest faceted diamond in the world.

    Do you have a favorite jewelry period or designer? 

    Cartier during the 1920’s created the “Tutti Frutti” collection which has some of the most exquisite pieces in the world. I would have to say that Cartier overall is my favorite jewelry designer.

    What do you feel best wearing? 

    Do you have a go to outfit? I like wearing a Patek Phillipe watch when I attend a special evening out in Los Angeles. I feel the watch has an understated elegance that can be worn casually or look very handsome with formal attire.