I forgot to mention anything in my last post, Juneau, Alaska, about the semi-scavenger hunt. Our personal shopper on the cruise ship presented us an opportunity at each port. If we went into Effy Jewelers at each stop and showed we were cruising with NCL, we would receive a FREE pendant–a different gem at each stop–and for $10 we could add the matching earrings. Since I always enjoy a good challenge, I like negotiating prices, and I love jewelry, this sounded kind of fun and gave me an excuse to go into multiple jewelry stores (which can be a pricey risk for me) and collect them all. Don’t ask hubby’s opinion though–he was less than humored, until they offered him a beer.
Now, I know, I know–it was just a gimmick to get us to shop. But, we WERE on a once-in-a-lifetime trip and I was prepared to make the most of it. At our first stop in Juneau, I went in to Effy and quickly found my freebie pendant–a dark blue topaz–and of course I ponied up the $10 for the matching earrings. I figured, if nothing else, the set would be a good souvenir for friends or family. Since Effy also provided us a beer while we were there, we had time to do a little window shopping, and then headed out to the Mendenhall Glacier.
At our next stop in Skagway, we popped into Effy to get my next freebie pendant. Here’s where I digress. Back in Juneau while window shopping, a collection called Watercolors caught my eye. At this stop, hubby wound up buying me the most beautiful Watercolors pendant and matching earrings. (I think the beers provided in the store helped facilitate the purchase!)After our purchase, I asked about the freebie pendant. Our sales guy asked how many I wanted. How many? I could get more than one? Only because of the purchase we made. Awesome! Knowing I was going to buy the matching earrings, I limited myself to three. These gems were a beautiful light blue topaz.More souvenirs! Some of you may still even have yours.
I must mention, we were in the store longer than planned, and ran a little late getting back to the ship. Luckily, they didn’t depart without us!
Our last port that had an Effy Jewelers was in Ketchikan. Hubby was scheduled for a fishing trip with my Dad, so I went to Effy on my own. I couldn’t resist–I found the perfect Watercolors ring to complete the set hubby bought me! This was also the stop that when I got my freebie pendant, it was the coveted Northern Lights topaz, which is a multi-colored, “mystic topaz”, also know as Labradorite.This one was going to be MY souvenir! It had all the colors of the Aurora Borealis and was super gorgeous!
While the Effy Jewelry scavenger-type hunt was gimmicky, it worked for me, but it may not be for everyone. While I feel I got a beautiful remembrance of our cruise to Alaska and some pretty, affordable souvenirs, I do know I didn’t end up with flawless, top-of-the-line gems. If you shop Effy, just be aware of what you’re buying and what it’s worth truly is. And watch out for the sales guy that may fluctuate on his prices. (Some of these guys can talk in circles.) Only pay what you feel it’s really worth. For me, it was worth every penny, simply because of the experience we had at each stop, I have fun memories of our experiences in each Effy and if I’m ever on another cruise stop in a port with an Effy Jewelry, I may find another piece! (I’m already eye-balling a blue saffire and diamond starfish collection they have.) Feel free to comment on your Effy experiences.