Hannoush are a family run jewelers who opened their first store in Massachusetts in 1980. Over the past few decades, Hannoush have franchised their business and now operate out of 50 stores.
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Hannoush are an authorized retailer for some big-name brands (Tag Heuer, Tacori, Verragio) and the Hannoush jewelry collections range from bridal and engagement jewelry right the way down to sterling silver and gemstone pieces. So, while Pandoras are pretty and Swarovski has its place, should you consider Hannoush for the most important jewelry moments in your life?
The Products & Diamonds
A point that works in Hannoush’s favor is the brands that they sell. For example, I find Tacori engagement rings to be unique works of art that are expertly made. However, you must sort the ‘wheat from the chaff’ as it were, as Hannoush comfortably sell these better brands alongside less desirable, less suitable ones. You will also find that vendors such as Whiteflash offer a more impressive designer portfolios which can be set with higher quality diamonds (more on this later). I would also suggest that Blue Nile and James Allen offer a larger selection of loose diamonds to partner them with.
The true test of Hannoush is how their in-house collection of engagement rings measure up against the leading brands – this is where we find the first flaw for Hannoush.
Hannoush engagement rings are fairly generic but extremely pricey. Let’s take a look at this 14k gold 0.70ct engagement ring.
Here’s what we know:
- Diamond carat weight: 0.70ct
- Setting: 14k yellow gold 6-claw
- Price: $3,450
This is all we know about the diamond. There is no mention of cut, color, clarity or certification. Now let’s compare with this 0.722ct super-ideal cut diamond from Whiteflash’s A CUT ABOVE® range.
- Carat Weight: 0.722ct
- Color: I
- Clarity: SI1 (eye-clean)
- Cut: Super-ideal
- Certification: AGS
- Performance reports: Yes
- Price: $2,730
Pair it with this classic 14k gold 6-prong setting and the total cost for your ring comes out at $3,080.
It is, quite frankly, unfathomable to me how Hannoush can sell a ring this expensive whilst offering their customers absolutely no specifications. This approach makes it impossible for buyers to make reasonable decisions about budget – you are essentially buying blind.
Hannoush sell EGL certified diamonds (not that an online customer would be able to find this information). The EGL is a favourite with some vendors due to the lower costs to certify (vs The GIA and AGS). They are, however, problematic for the consumer, offering overly generous and inconsistent grades.
Ultimately, Hannoush operate with little transparency when it comes to their diamonds. The best vendors are proud of quality diamonds. They use diamond light performance reports, high-res imaging and detailed specs to show off their superior stones and put the consumers mind at ease (Whiteflash and James Allen are good examples of this). In the age of the internet, buyers understand that knowledge is power, and a simple google search or consultation with an expert such as myself are all it takes to have a successful experience. Hannoush hinges on the misinformed buyers who have missed out on a diamond education.
The In-Store Experience
There is simply no denying the excitement of a traditional jewelry-shopping experience. Although I encourage my readers to go for the better quality and prices that can be found online, I also appreciate those who want ‘the experience’ that a bricks and mortar store can offer.
However, the success of this experience lies in the staff’s ability to deliver unbiased information and a thorough diamond education; sadly, this is not the case with Hannoush. Though pleasant, their staff training evidently does not go beyond the very basics and is specific to EGL. You will find it virtually impossible to accurate diamond comparisons and work to a set budget.
The Final Word
In many ways Hannoush are a run of the mill jewelers. If you’re in the market for a watch or a piece of pretty costume jewelry, you may wander into a Hannoush store and find just what you need. When it comes to fine jewelry, engagement rings and all things diamonds, you need to go for the best.
In a time where buyers are becoming increasingly more knowledgeable, there is simply no where for brands such as Hannoush to hide. Neglecting even the most basic diamond specs on both their e-commerce site and their in-store experience is unforgivable and on top of this, their prices are sky high.
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