Makeover in Miami: Packing Our Bags for JIS October 2016



When the next edition of the Jewelers International Show is held at the Miami Beach Convention Center Oct. 14–17, attendees will want to take a good look around. With a $596 million renovation to the center beginning in 2017, this fall will be the last time they’ll experience the current layout. 

An updated facility is in line with all the changes that show organizer Reed Exhibitions (JCK magazine’s parent company) is bringing to the table. Carolyn Thamkul, executive vice president of San Francisco–based Belle Étoile, a longtime JIS exhibitor, says that since Reed acquired the brand in 2015 JIS has transformed into a more sophisticated event. 

“It’s not just a little cash-and-carry affair—it’s a powerful show that no one paid attention to until Reed put it on everyone’s radar,” Thamkul says. “Plus, Miami is the gateway to Latin America.”

For the October show, Thamkul will bring many of her signature enamel and silver jewels, featuring plenty of sea- and nature-inspired pieces. Geometric motifs continue to trend, she says, including a new line of 24k gold vermeil pieces that is gaining traction.

Meanwhile, Molly Wang, CEO of Lafonn, will bring a plethora of silver styles the brand debuted at JCK Las Vegas, including a selection of Rhonda Faber Green–designed initial pendant necklaces and rose-cut simulated stones in the Heritage collection.

Of particular interest to retailers may be Lafonn’s new team of duty-free salespeople to service the Caribbean market. “Some JIS buyers do look for cash-and-carry, but the Caribbean buyers overall like branded merchandise with set prices so they don’t have to negotiate at the counter,” Wang says. “And when their customers travel to the United States, they already know it’s a brand.” 

Soon enough, all JIS exhibitors and attendees will have to do a little traveling. Due to the makeover of the convention center, the January and April 2017 editions of the show are moving to the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center, a 30-minute drive away. (The October 2017 edition of JIS is scheduled to take place in Miami.) 

Says Yancy Weinrich, senior vice president of Reed Jewelry Group: “Come January 2018, we’ll be in a brand-new renovated facility, which will be one of the nicest convention centers in the country, if not the world!” 

Top: Sirena bangle in silver with white mother-of-pearl; $795; Belle Étoile, San Francisco; 415-626-9223; belleetoilejewelry.com