The Pearl of Mallorca is a figurehead of the island. For more than 100 years Manacor has been producing artistic pearls of special quality. And of course this precious jewel is one of the most popular gifts from the island. You can buy the Majorca pearl from jewellers and in shops and showrooms of the most traditional manufacturers.
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As the pearl entered the island
When the German engineer and entrepreneur Eduard Friedrich Hugo Heusch moved the production of his imitation pearls to Mallorca around 1900, the island became the epitome of silky jewels worldwide. The Perlas de Mallorca still enjoy an excellent reputation today and belong to the island culture as well as to the most exclusive Mallorca gifts that visitors can buy in jewellery shops and showrooms of the largest pearl producers. All his life Eduard Heusch wanted to create a lace pearl that would be inferior to the natural product in little to nothing - and yet affordable not only for the rich and privileged. The broad masses should also be able to afford his pearls. For his project he needed the proximity of the sea, opal blowers and the experienced hands of women who treated the pearls with care. He found all this on Mallorca and in Manacor.
The pearl essence of Mallorca
In the pearl centre of the island in the mid-1950s, Heusch succeeded in further refining the process for coating the pearls, which was initiated by Heusch, and producing the perfect pearl with a sophisticated and still secret recipe. Insiders call it the "pearl essence", which is extracted from organic elements of the Mediterranean Sea. The Mallorca Pearl owes the iridescence, beauty and resistance of a natural pearl to this complex formula. Without a trained eye, the Majórica - the name of the company Heusch and its jewellery - could no longer be distinguished from a real oyster pearl. The breakthrough catapulted the company to the top position for pearl products and pushed Manacor to the map of the world.
Although the complex process was and still is elaborate and, despite mechanical support, still requires a great deal of manual work. At that time, the hardened glass core was dipped more than 30 times in a bead liquid consisting of fish scales and shell sand, repeatedly heated, cut and finally polished to a high gloss. The layering process is similar to that used in nature and gives the Mallorca pearls the same silky shimmer as natural pearls. Only that the oyster pearls sometimes have to "mature" for years. But also in other respects the elegant Mallorca Pearl is a first-class quality. It is considered to be long-lasting, stable in form and colour. Neither heat and cold nor dust or sweat can diminish its luster. By adding minerals during the manufacturing process, different shades of colour can be created, which give the Mallorca Pearl a special touch.
Pearl Boom on Fisher Island
Majórica did not remain the only pearl company in Mallorca. After Heusch's patent expired in 1948, new factories popped up and triggered a real pearl boom on the island. The whole world wanted the beautiful jewellery from the island. Majorica grew steadily and expanded. A branch was opened in New York. At the beginning of the 1960s, the Manacor premises were opened to visitors, who could now take a look behind the scenes of jewellery production.
Jewellers on the island made individual and unique pieces of jewellery from the pearls. Even today, pearls are still produced on Mallorca and a visit to a pearl factory is still a special excursion for Mallorca holidaymakers. Of course, the interest is first and foremost in what the designers create today from the graceful pieces of jewellery and display them in the showcases. At Majorica a new collection is designed 4 times a year and sold from Mallorca to all over the world. How the jewellery has changed in more than 125 years is the subject of the museum's reappraisal. Whether rings, necklaces, bracelets or pearl asseccoires in royal crowns - the Mallorca pearl has made it far despite many competitive products and the price war, especially with the products from the Far East.
Almost every jewellery and jewellery retailer on the island now has a selection of Mallorca pearls on offer. Many designers use the island pearl for their collections. Good addresses for pearl shopping in Mallorca are the specialist shops in Palma, for example along the Carrer de Sant Miquel or the Carrer del Palau Reial. If you want to buy directly from the manufacturers, go to one of the outlet stores or to one of the showrooms. When buying Mallorca pearls, make sure that they are genuine. For a long time now, the market on Mallorca has been flooded with plagiarisms, which are often sold under similar sounding names.
Buy Mallorca Pearls - Locations and opening hours:
1st Majórica is the mother of all Mallorca pearls. The traditional company opened a new flagship store in Porto Cristo in 2016, close to the sports harbour. It is open from June to September from 09:30 to 19:00 daily. From March to May and in October daily from 09:30 to 18:00. From November to February daily from 9:30 to 17:00, on Sundays and holidays from 10:00 to 13:30.
2nd Orquídea is also a traditional manufacturer of Mallorca pearls. This company is represented in Montuiri, Carretera Manacor Km-30 with a spacious showroom (open Monday to Friday from 9:00 to 19:00, on weekends from 9:00 to 13:00). There you can also learn about the production process and history.
3rd Pearl-Art has a more recent history, but the experience of 25 years of Mallorca pearl making has the founders of PearlArt. The company also has a production workshop in Montuiri and runs a small pearl shop with a museum exhibition about the history of pearls in Mallorca right in the town hall square not far from the thousand-year-old olive tree in Palma. C/ Palau Reail, 2 07001 Palma, Tel: (+34) 971 727 160.