High Quality Selection and Special Service Are Hallmarks of Longtime Garbo Jewelers
EXCELLENCE AND EXPERTISE: “Jewelry is a keepsake. It can be passed down from generation to generation. It may commemorate a special occasion, an important moment and memory. This is why it means so much to people.” Gary Berezowsky, owner of Garbo Jewelers, is shown by a display of high quality pieces, including a two-tone mosaic necklace, Baroque pearls, 18-karat multi-color Tahitian and South Sea pearls, and a 14-karat yellow gold necklace with industrial-inspired interlocking links.
By Jean Stratton
It’s good to know that in our current era when “fast and furious” seems to be the dominating force, there are still places, concepts, and visions that do stand the test of time.
Garbo Jewelers is such a place. Located in the Montgomery Shopping Center on Route 1 North, it has a story to tell, and a continuing focus on high quality jewelry and knowledgeable, friendly service and advice.
Its history dates to 1982, when owner Gary Berezowsky opened his first jewelry store in Avenel. A master goldsmith and appraiser, he decided to move to the Princeton area in 1997, and Garbo Jewelers has been a mainstay for his many loyal customers.
The full service store offers a wide selection of jewelry, including Berezowsky’s own custom designs well as on-premises repair service.
His knowledge of the jewelry business extends back to his early days as an apprentice. As he explains, “I apprenticed with a jeweler when I was just starting out, and I leaned about jewelry. Then, I went to the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) in New York City, and became a gemologist and a GIA certified appraiser.
“When I moved to Montgomery, the store offered expanded space, and we added more high end pieces, including emeralds, sapphires, rubies, and diamonds.”
These all became favorites with customers, who have appreciated the excellent quality of the Garbo selection.
“We have GIA-certified diamonds, Ceylon sapphires, Zambian and Colombian emeralds, and Burmese rubies,” says Berezowsky. “These are very special.”
He adds that Tanzanite is also very popular. “Its beautiful blue shades look like sapphire, but it is much more affordable,” he says.
In addition, pearls remain remain a favorite at Garbo. “They have a classic look that is always in style, and that appeal to many customers. We have a variety of styles and sizes, including the highly desirable Tahitian pearls. Baroque pearls are also especially appealing, as they epitomize the unique quality of pearls since no two pearls are identical.”
Opals are also a favorite with many clients, who enjoy the stone’s nuanced look and lovely shading.
Rings and earrings are best-sellers at the store, but necklaces and bracelets are also popular. Stackable bangles are especially in demand now, reports Berezowsky.
Engagement and wedding rings are very important at Garbo, and while diamonds are still No. 1 for engagement rings, precious stones of color — such as emeralds, sapphires, and rubies — are favored choices now too.
Anniversary bands continue to be in demand, and can be a treasured way to commemorate a special anniversary.
Garbo also has an important selection of estate jewelry, with a variety of items including vintage cameos in different sizes, rings, bracelets, brooches, and watches.
“Estate jewelry is popular because it has a different look, a history,” explains Berezowsky. “A lot of people like vintage, and it can range from more than 100 years ago to the 1960s. All across the spectrum.”
Array of Styles
A selection of men’s and women’s watches is also offered, in a wide array of styles. Seiko is a specialty, and as he points out, “We have been a Seiko dealer for 40 years.”
Assorted choices in men’s jewelry are also offered, and include rings, bracelets, chains, and cufflinks.
“We also carry religious medals, crosses, and Stars of David, and Jewish Chai necklaces,” he points out.
Berezowsky had noticed changes in customers’ choices over the years, and as he says, “In the’80s and ’90s, yellow gold was very popular. Now, people want white gold and platinum. As to style, it’s really everything, from delicate designs to big, bold, and dramatic. It’s very personal. Everyone really as their own individual taste.”
Garbo is not only set apart by its exceptional selection of the finest jewelry, but also by its on-site workshop. There, Berezowsky creates his custom designs, and also does repair work and cleaning.
“I especially enjoy redesigning older pieces,” he observes. “It’s the creativity and coming up with new ideas. We can enhance an older piece with a more up-to-date look. We often replace old mountings with new ones.”
These pieces have sentimental value, he adds. “The client wants to keep the ring, for example, but wants to give it a more modern look. I particularly like the creativity involved in making an old ring into a new one. And another possibility is to turn it into a pendant. This is often very popular.”
Garbo’s clients come from all over the Princeton area, and even beyond, he reports. “We have a very large and loyal clientele, and we even have customers in Florida and South Carolina, who have moved from this area. They’ll call me and describe what they are looking for, and they know they can count on us to have it for them. They can also find things on our website.”
The store was closed for several months during the height of COVID-19, but customers have been returning in large numbers, says Berezowsky. “They are so glad to be able to come in and have face-to-face interaction, and spend time with us.”
Garbo offers a wide price range, he adds. “We always emphasize quality, but we also try to have something for every budget. We have items at many price points, and we will they to help customers find the best piece within their price range.”
Gift certificates are also available.
In addition to jewelry for sale, Berezowsky purchases gold, and also offers an appraisal service.
There is a romance to jewelry, and when a special piece becomes an heirloom to be passed down to another generation, it can be priceless. The clients who visit Garbo, seeking something that special will find both abundant choices and unique personal attention. That is how an establishment endures and thrives for 40 years!
For more information, call (609) 252-9797. Visit the website for specific items and pricing at garbojewelers.com.