The Oceanview Mine is located in Pala, California, a region that is world-famous for its production of gem-quality tourmalines in a variety of hues. While the mine was first opened in the early 1900’s, in remained largely untouched until it was reopened in the year 2000. Since then it has sporadically produced pockets of morganite, tourmaline and amazing deep purple kunzite. This tourmaline comes from the Big Kahuna II pocket zone discovered in late 2010; it produced some remarkable multi-colored and deep cranberry red tourmaline crystals. The majority of these crystals were too small or too included to be faceted. During 2012-2013 I spent some time working in this mine and managed to acquire a parcel of gems from one of the miners; this tourmaline is faceted from that material.
This beautiful gem is a gorgeous deep purple-red color–rather unusual for a California tourmaline. It’s been faceted in a custom radiant rectangle design I created specifically for tourmaline. The resulting gemstone is bright and lively in the hand and really shows of the gorgeous color of the tourmaline. The gem is extremely clean, and while it shows some tiny inclusions in the macro image, they are not visible without a 10x loupe–it’s eye clean. The tourmaline weighs 1.30 carats and measures 7.3 x 5.3 x 5.0 mm.