Al Zain Jewellers
BY ANAAM IKRAM
Jewellery designer, Jennie Kwon exclaims about the importance of adorning oneself in precious metals and stones, “Jewellery has the power to be this one little thing that can make you feel unique”. Selecting the right piece of jewellery is a meticulous process carried out by women regularly, and designing jewellery that defines a woman is too an art in itself. Fashioning intricate jewellery pieces that also make a statement and become part of the wearer’s identity is a signature of Al Zain Jewellers, and combined with their passion to uphold the Al Zain family name, it has resulted in the jewellery house becoming one of the most celebrated jewellers in the region.
In the line of trade – finding their beginnings in Bahrain’s pearling industry
Joining the business of pearl trading in the 1930s, the founding father of the Al Zain family, the late Hassan Al Zain, became part of the pearling industry at a time when the Kingdom’s economy was predominantly dependant on farming, fishing, and pearl diving. Soon after, Hassan Al Zain’s son, the late Abdulla Al Zain, joined his father’s business and his involvement in the business lead to its immense success due to his keen eye for elegance combined with his business-savvy mind. His creativity and affinity for pearls lead to Al Zain Jewellers becoming renowned as one of the first to incorporate pearls into jewellery. Watches, sourced from the horologie capitals such as Switzerland and Italy, were then added into their brand as the business expanded. The launch of their flagship store in the 1950s, in Khobar, marked the beginning of their journey to expand around the GCC as they introduced many Al Zain Jewellery stores across the region throughout the years.
Following in the path carved by their elders before them, Abdulla Al Zain’s sons and their old-time friend, Mohammed Hassan, also became involved in the business and were responsible for the successful move of their primary store location from Tigar Road in the old Manama Souq to Yateem Centre. What started off with only a few employees saw immense growth at the hands of Abdulla’s son, Nabeel Al Zain, as he worked tirelessly to commandeer the family business into the lucrative company it has become today. Al Zain Jewellers becoming a prominent name in the jewellery industry in Bahrain was the direct result of Nabeel’s zeal towards a fast-paced expansion of the family business across the GCC. Inheriting his father’s qualities of placing great emphasis on aesthetics and detail while maintaining his values for integrity was the driving force behind the launch of multiple stores across the GCC.
As the business expanded further, Nabeel’s wife, Samar Al Gosaibi, and children –making them the fourth generation of Al Zain family members to become part of the business – also joined his side. What started off as mere support for her husband, soon turned into a passion and Samar went onto obtain a degree in Gemology. Samar, alongside Mohammed Hassan, worked closely with Nabeel to ensure that the Al Zain Jewellers were recognised as one of the most prestigious jewellers on both a local and global scale. Nabeel Al Zain’s children, Mohammed, Faisal, and Noora – much like their father and his forefathers before him – are also currently involved in the business and use their expertise in the industry, as well as a modern-day understanding of the market to ensure the brand’s name continues to flourish, all the while keeping true to the essence of the brand.
Over 80 years of excellence – the ever-evolving Al Zain Jewellers today
Laying the foundations for Al Zain Jewellers through the pearling industry, the forefathers of the Al Zain family left behind a bequest for each generation to build upon. As the younger generations entered the family business, they introduced various new aspects to the business to expand it further. Serving as the CEO of Al Zain Jewellers, Nabeel Al Zain’s son, Mohammed, explained the evolution of business was such that it started from using natural pearls and incorporating them into jewellery items, followed by the manufacturing of gold jewellery, and then diamond jewellery.
The business, Mohammed explains, is divided into two segments overlooking both retail operations and the wholesale division. The retail operations are responsible for looking over the GCC stores located in Bahrain, Dubai, Doha, Jordan, Khobar, and Riyadh, with plans to open another store in Jeddah and a second store opening in Doha. The wholesale division caters to the MENA region for traditional gold jewellery, 21 and 22-carat jewellery, and to the Indian market as well.
Just as eternal as the pearls, Al Zain Jeweller’s pearl adorned jewellery is still one of their biggest and best selling lines, noting that the rarity of certain pearls and the time it takes to complete a piece of jewellery containing the pearls makes them one of their most valuable pieces. Overseeing the design process, Mohammed explains they keep in mind their different clientele when they start working on their lines. Over the years, they have launched multiple lines for children, young adults, and gifts for special occasions such as birthdays and graduation, weddings, and anniversaries. Al Zain Jewellers’ ‘Heritage Collection’ is an exquisite line that represents the rich heritage of Bahrain through its intricately detailed traditional gold jewellery, Dilmun Seal Collection is a pearl jewellery collection designed especially for the older clientele who wish to showcase their legacy through their accessories. The highly talented team of designers and manufacturers at Al Zain Jewellers come together harmoniously to produce and reveal excellence of design, craftsmanship, and artistry collection after collection, elevating the name of Al Zain Jewellers with each piece produced.
It is not just the attention to detail that is placed upon each collection or individual piece, but also the way Al Zain Jewellers as a shop has been built is one of the key element that sets the jewellery brand apart. Ensuing all of their pieces are displayed in their rightful manner, the shop has been designed to emulate the wings of a Swan to represent warmth, comfort and safety, as well as elegance, which have combined together to shape the brand image for its customers.
The collaboration between extraordinary artisanal mastery, high quality gems from around the world, and ornate original designs has earned Al Zain Jewellers a plethora of awards throughout the years. Celebrating their creativity and their penchant for producing outstanding pieces, the jewellery house has earned awards for Best Eastern Design Jewellery (2012-13), Best Oriental Design Jewellery (2011), Tahitian Pearl Trophy Middle East (2007-08 and 2005-06), and the World Gold Council (2000) for various jewellery items in each category of the award series. It comes as no surprise that Al Zain Jewellers is home to many prestigious accolades as the family’s commitment and dedication to their business has not been tainted by time, rather only strengthened the bonds between the brand and its customers. Working tirelessly to further the brand image but maintain its core values of representing the Al Zain family identity and heritage of the Kingdom through their designs and craft, the team at Al Zain Jewellers has successfully established itself as an illustrious jewellery brand and household name over four decades, and has no plans to stop anytime soon.
Elements of extravagance – the collections at Al Zain Jewellers
Pearl Collection: one of their biggest and most popular collections, the Pearl Collection features opulent jewellery pieces that have been intricately designed using only the finest Pearls, gems, and metals, and adds a flair of sophistication to the wearer. From rings, simple designed necklaces, to more elaborate pieces, the Pearl Collection is an elegant line that showcases the stunning marriage between jewellery and pearls.
Bronze Collection: inspired from the designs found in Spanish Andalusian art, this collection features bold yet feminine pieces adorned with various precious stones and ornate detailing. Warmer in colour than gold, and harder than both gold and silver, the characteristics of bronze make it the ideal metal to craft elaborately designed pieces.
Arabdeco Collection: fusing together the elements of Art Deco with Arabesque motif, this collection is the amalgam of artistry and Arabian heritage. The linear patterns combined with traditional Arabic design result in a beautiful collection of elegant pieces, especially for those with an eye for those who consider jewellery no less than art.
Maharaja Collection: a name that speaks for itself, the Maharaja Collection uses old Indian royalty as its muse. The exquisite pieces in this collection comprised of rose cut, briolette, diamonds, and strands of the finest natural pearls for earrings and necklaces, and even bracelets have been crafted to bring back the opulence of Kings and Queens from ancient times to fit a present-day clientele.
Heritage Collection: incorporating Bahraini culture into the designs, 21k collection is a celebration of the Kingdom’s rich history. Using stones such as Amber, Turquoise, and natural Pearls, the Heritage Collection features traditional local designs known as naqoosh that highlights authentic Bahraini design elements which have been combined with modern designs to unveil a unique line of jewellery.
Change Collection: teaming up with Chameli Jewellery designer and founder, Yasmine Al Sairafi, the pieces in this collection use stones from India and Brazil and focus on harvesting positive energy. The distinct necklaces are created around the irregular-shaped Druzy stones such as Amethyst, Agate, and Turquoise to represent the individuality of each person. Using 18k gold and white diamonds in the chain, with symbolic charms and triangles – each selected separately based on the stone – to create a delicate pieces, these necklaces serve as more than just an accessory to the wearer.
Pioneers of their craft, Al Zain Jewellers have long cemented themselves as one of the most integral part of Bahrain’s flourishing pearling industry at the time. Throughout the years, their dedication and passion to not only creating incomparable jewellery pieces but also preserving the culture of Bahrain through their work with each new generation has lead them to being seen as one of the most sought after jewellers in the region and internationally. Starting off as modest pearl traders and evolving themselves into the esteemed jewellers they have become today, the Al Zain family and their ever expanding business are proof of the fruit of hard work, perseverance, and creativity. Carefully crafting lines that resonate with their widespread clientele, the Al Zain name is used synonymously with opulence and excellence, and serves as an emblem for the Kingdom’s well-known pearling and lush jewellery industry.
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