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Where is the Antwerp diamond district located?

  • How did the diamond district first come about?
  • Where exactly is the diamond district located?
  • Why is a visit to the diamond district definitely worthwhile?

  • The Antwerp diamond district, sometimes also referred to as the Diamond Quarter, is the perfect place to visit when you’re looking for diamonds in Antwerp. The district is known right across the world for its important role in the diamond trade. Diamonds are bought and sold, cut and polished. But where exactly is the district located and what makes visiting it worthwhile?

    How did the diamond district first come about?

    Antwerp has been known as the diamond centre from as early as the 16th century. The diamond centre was originally located at the Groenplaats, but moved several times during the course of the centuries, including to the Paardenmarkt and the Meir. The district has been a stone’s throw away from Antwerp’s Central Station since the start of the 20th century. The importance of the diamond trade increased from the nineteen seventies and centralised stock exchanges and auction houses with specialist facilities started appearing.

    Where exactly is the diamond district located?

    The global diamond trade centre is approximately 1 km2 in size and consists of five streets, three of which are completely pedestrianised, which form the hard core of the professional trade: the Rijfstraat, de Hoveniersstraat and the Schupstraat. You will also find the Vestingstraat and the Lange Herentalstraat, where you will also find plenty of shops and diamond cutters, but they are more focussed on tourists looking for diamonds in Antwerp. There are also quite a few shops for tourists to enjoy a browse in in the surrounding streets, like the Pelikaanstraat and the Appelmansstraat. Rough diamonds are imported into the Antwerp diamond district by diamond dealers who want to have the diamonds cut and made into jewellery elsewhere, but it’s also a place where cut diamonds leave Antwerp again in order to form part of the international diamonds trade again.

    Why is a visit to the diamond district definitely worthwhile?

    A trip to the diamond district is an absolute must if you are visiting Antwerp. In addition to the many beautiful jewellers in the district, there are also a number of other interesting places of interest. For example, you can find the Diamond Trade Stock Exchange, which was originally known as the Antwerp Casino. The building is located in the Pelikaanstraat and the Hoveniersstraat. You will also find the Diamond Office in the Hoveniersstraat, which all diamond imports and exports pass through. It forms part of the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC), the diamond sector’s umbrella organisation, founded in 1973. But the district isn’t just home to diamond related buildings. The Portuguese Synagogue, which serves the Sephardic community, is certainly also worth a visit. The building’s sober and attractive design has resulted in it looking like a Neo-Roman church and is therefore a stark contrast to the gigantic office buildings which surround it. You will need to leave the diamond district for the DIVA diamond museum and the MAS diamond pavilion, but these two icons certainly won’t disappoint either if you’re interested in the history of the diamond trade and industry. Are you looking for the perfect diamond jewellery in Antwerp? Do come and see us in our showroom or contact one of BAUNAT’s diamond experts.

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