My last stop on my Los Angeles #JewelryRoadTrip is a store unlike any other store I’ve ever visited! After 16 states across the US and over 100 stores visited, this shop stands alone. I can’t even try to make you guess because these photos say it all, but I visited my first ever crystal shop for my #JewelryRoadTrip project! The store is called Crystalarium and they’ve been in business since 1987. This place radiates an energy that is indescribable. Calling it magical is an understatement…describing it as a “crystal shop” is not doing it justice…and coming inside without it having some sort of impact on you is preposterous. I know I left after my visit feeling energized, wondering if that was heaven on Earth and already planning my next trip.
Crystalarium is located in West Hollywood on North La Cienega Blvd., a popular street with lots of shops and restaurants. Robin Banchik is the owner and seasoned gemologist and when I met Robin, her passion for crystals and gems was more than apparent! She graciously welcomed me into her store, which has been giving her joy since she started over 30 years ago. Robin went to GIA back when it first started and as she was describing her experience there learning all she could about gems, I realized how much her and her class paved the way for the gemological students today, as they had it much harder! She laughs that you can now use your textbook during the 20-stone exam. Robin wears a bold tourmaline ring and didn’t have to ask twice if I wanted to see some of her personal collection in her office. She is a self-proclaimed star lover and by that I mean when gems exhibit the phenomena called asterism (like star sapphires).
What Crystalarium offers will blow you away! You’ll find some of the most exquisite gem and mineral specimens here and when I say museum-worthy, I mean that literally because they’ve sold a few pieces to the Smithsonian and the Natural History Museum of LA. They also carry a lot of one-of-a-kind gemstone decor like candlestick holders, bowls, side tables, large obelisks, large stands for the bigger specimens…even a carved stone chair! Robin showed me a photo of an amethyst fireplace that someone had custom made, which completely blew me away. We’re in Hollywood, after all. Whether you want a large specimen for display, smaller “bookshelf” size crystals, pocket stones and anything in between, Crystalarium has it! Collect spheres? What about hearts? They have every little nuance you might be attracted to and never knew you needed for your collection!
I knew Crystalarium also sells jewelry, as I’ve swooned over a few pieces they’ve posted on Instagram (I’ve been a long time follower). However, I didn’t realize how extensive their collection actually is! Aside from the shelves and shelves of crystals, they have two large cases which house their jewelry–one for all their silver and one for all their high karat gold. Their jewelry is handmade and designed right in their store and each piece features a unique gemstone that was hand-selected. They also make a unique gemstone pendant I’ve never seen anywhere else–it is called the Vessel and it is a hollowed out gemstone which can be used to keep anything you’d like that can fit that is meaningful or sentimental. Next to the display of “vessels” I saw the ring trays full to the brim and immediately had minor heart failure. Then I got to the jewelry pads filled with color-organized gemstone pendants, each gem more unique than the last. My mind was spinning in the best way possible. So many incredible pieces, my wish list became longer than my grocery list by the time I left!
If you visit Crystalarium, you cannot miss the antique vault they have in the back of the store which houses some to-die-for gemstones and crystal specimens. Each shelf is immaculately organized, color-coded and very photo-ready! It is my favorite photo-op and when you’re there you must snap a pic. I went in deep with a video of the vault, which I will honestly treasure forever. You can’t get any better than this. If you’re a gem lover or rock hound, you must visit!
Photos by Lauren Newman Photography
This sponsored blog post was brought to you in collaboration with Crystalarium.
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