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Christ Jewelers has a long and storied history and is a powerhouse in the German jewelry market. Established in Frankfurt 150 years ago by Wilhelm Alexander Christ. Since then it has grown to a 210 stores that sell almost 400 million euros in jewelry each year. True, the overwhelming majority of their sales are not diamond engagement rings, but its still formidable.
Walking into Christ was not exactly a luxurious or welcoming experience. The store is very dark and nobody offered us help. Even when we found a salesperson, the person didn’t offer us a place to sit. Considering we were shopping for a 10,000 euro diamond, you would think they would make us more comfortable. While writing this review, I asked Jenny (one of our consultants who joined me for the secret shopping) to describe the Christ experience. Her immediate response was “it felt like we were in a shoe store.” Not the greatest endorsement.
The sales assistant that helped us was not very helpful. She did not have much diamond knowledge and didn’t really guide at all. After looking at a few diamonds, the “best” choice was a 1.02ct H IF IGI certified round diamond in a 14kt white gold solitaire setting. The price was an eye-popping 10,599 euros.
Let’s start with the diamond before we discuss the value you are getting. First off the diamond had an IGI certificate which, as we explain in our post here, is not as strong as the industry standard. While it was likely an IF diamond, there was no way it was an H color. That said, the diamond was very nice; it was well cut, bright and eye-clean. It may be a nice diamond, but buying an IF clarity diamond is fundamentally poor value. You are wasting money on a diamond characteristic that doesn’t actually make the diamond look nicer. You can buy a VVS2 and it would be just as “eye-clean” as the IF. We explain this in our clarity article.
Now on to the value, or lack thereof. Even ignoring the fact that you can find better value dropping in clarity, the price is way too high for a ring like that. Take a look at this pair: Here is a beautiful 1.01 I IF (GIA Certified) diamond with a comparable 14kt white gold solitaire setting. The price for this ring is 6,393 euros.
You can get the exact same ring for 40% cheaper. What exactly is Christ offering for that money? The experience wasn’t pleasant, their service wasn’t helpful and the store didn’t leave us with a particularly luxurious feeling.
You are getting far better value buying from Blue Nile or James Allen. Blue Nile has European operations, so you don’t have to worry about any additional taxes and there are no problems returns (they have an excellent return policy). While some stores may offer some added value with their experience, Christ certainly wasn’t one of them.
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