If emerald represents the earth's body and ruby is its blood, then sapphire must be its soul. The deep inky blue of Kanchanaburi blue sapphire is a captivating pool of splendor for sapphire lovers.
Sapphire, along with her sister gemstone ruby, belongs to the corundum group of gemstones, considered one of the hardest minerals on Earth. The term corundum is thought to originate from the Indian "kauruntaka" or the Sanskrit "kuruvinda." However, the name sapphire is from the Latin "sapphirus" meaning blue. There are different types of sapphire available in the market and most of them have unique qualities pursued by many. A select few sapphires have the ability to display a star-like spectacle referred as asterism. This star can appear in any color but typically occurs in blue, black and pink gemstones. Out of many varieties of sapphire, Kanchanaburi sapphires are the best of the translucent blues. While Ceylon sapphires are known for their glittery transparent spread of light cobalt, Kanchanaburi stones possess a heavy saturation of inky navy. They often display intense color zoning with outlines being darker in tone. Kanchanaburi sapphires are classified by their color concentration and dim appearance.
The sleepy province of Kanchanaburi, immortalized in "The Bridge Over the River Kwai," rests among the jungle valleys of western Thailand. The Bo Ploi sapphire mines were discovered in 1918 and remain a premier source of blue sapphires today. The miners of Bo Ploi must unearth more than 50 tons of alluvial soil to extract just one carat of sapphire crystals. Sapphires have been heavily mined from the Bo Ploi mines in the last ten years and are approaching depletion.