A MAN OF MANY DIAMONDS

"Daniel has set a new trend through his jewellery and we are extremely proud to carry his brand," said Vice Managing Director of Damas, Tamjid Abdulla. "It's so beautiful to see these pieces emerge from the designs on paper. He is a great jewel on the Damas crown."

By Robert Flemming (Staff Reporter)

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Published: Thu 23 Mar 2006, 11:55 AM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 4:46 PM

Daniel Koren is young, rich, talented and looks as though he's just walked off the film set of The Godfather. An Italian American with a touch of Persian, he reminds one of Michael Corleone; he's no stranger to girls dripping with diamonds and being in the fast lane. Hardly surpising when you hear that his jewellery adorns the like of Halle Berry, Jennifer Love and Angela Bassett. But what makes him different from all the other sparkles in the universe.

"There are three parts to making jewellery: the design, the craftsmanship and the diamonds. You hardly ever get the aesthetic, craftsmanship and the top quality diamonds combined," says Daniel. "You can hire a talented jeweller and pay him for making a ring. He may have the best cut diamonds in the world and technically he can make that ring but the last part of it is the aesthetic and — It's the angles at which the diamonds are set. There's no point in designing a Ferrari if you don't have the aerodynamics. I have had some things that missed, that didn't come out the way we liked so we just scratch it. I have no hard feelings for the loss of investment in materials. Very few people our there are prepared to sacrifice that. If I don't believe in it, I can't sell it."

Daniel's diamonds are sourced through the Diamond Trading Company based in London but are cut and polished to his specification by his Belgian partner in Antwerp. They met by accident but the Belgian's attention to detail attracted and Daniel found that their skills perfectly complemented his equally detailed designs.

"It was a marriage made in heaven. Everything is cut to perfection. We do not compromise on quality. All our diamonds are graded with certification to have the maximum cut, clarity and grade, polished symmetry and excellent cut grade. That gives the maximum sparkle. They're just great to work with and it makes my life a lot easier."

Specialising in aascher and cushion cuts which he says have a very sophisticated look and feel and makes for a very 'sexy' diamond. The 33 carat Krupps diamond owned by Elizabeth Taylor was aascher cut and she had a sophisticated look as well!

"We've the hand made, customisation of making jewellery and adapted it to enable us to duplicate a style where before you could only make one or two items. It's very consistent and we maintain the same quality. But we are limited in the design and the style because we specialise in diamonds between half and five carats."

Daniel may be a star designer. But first and foremost he's a businessman. He takes a lot of pride and joy in making his jewellery and regards each piece as one of his children. But that doesn't mean that he'll baulk at the idea of selling them.

"You always fall in love but there's always tomorrow."

Every single diamond passes through Daniel's hands before it's set to work. His is the choice, the design, the how and the when. His inspiration might come from a pile of bricks or the architecture in a hotel but all have to fit around the geometry of his diamonds. But what the future challenges for the glittering entrepreneur.

"I'm already wealthy, a billionaire: I have three children and those are my gems." He smiles. "In Italy they say, 'you wanted the bike, now peddle'. My father told me that it takes 30 years to build a reputation and 30 seconds to destroy it. The most important thing is that the name is not tarnished, so I stand by my product and that makes me who I am." And diamonds really are forever.



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