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Diamond District, Manhattan

  The Diamond District is an area of New York City located on West 47th Street between Fifth Avenue and the Avenue of the Americas (Sixth Avenue) in midtown Manhattan, within walking distance of many New York attractions. It is located one block south of Rockefeller Center, three blocks south of Radio City Music Hall (along the Avenue of the Americas) and three blocks south of St Patrick's Cathedral (along Fifth Avenue). Also one block east of the Broadway Theater District.

The district was created when dealers moved north from an earlier district near Canal Street and The Bowery that was created in the 1920’s, and from a second district located in the Financial District, specifically near the intersection of Fulton and Nassau Streets, which started in 1931. The move uptown started in 1941. The district grew in importance when The Nazis invaded Holland and Belgium, forcing thousands of Orthodox Jews in the diamond business to flee Antwerp and Amsterdam and settle in New York City. Most of them remained after World War II, and remain a dominant influence in the Diamond District[1]

The area is one of the primary centers of the global diamond industry (along with London - rough stones; Antwerp, Belgium - historical but waning; Mumbai, India - increasing in significance; and Johannesburg, South Africa - the major historical source), as well as the premier center for jewelry shopping in the city. An estimated 90% of diamonds in the United States enter through New York.


It has been reported[2] that total receipts for the value of a single day's trade on the block average $400 million. There are 2,600 independent businesses located in the district, nearly all of them dealing in diamonds or jewelry. Most are located in booths at one of the 25 "exchanges" in the district. Many deals are finalized by a simple, traditional blessing (mazel und brucha[1]) and handshake. The Diamond Dealers Club, an exclusive club that acts as a de facto diamond exchange, has its own synagogue. Retailers with shops line the streets outside. Above the bazaar is the Gemological Institute of America, which trains gem dealers. Getting the best deal means shopping around and bargaining over prices.


  1. ^ a b Kenneth T. Jackson: The Encyclopedia of New York City: The New York Historical Society; Yale University Press; 1995. P. 332.
  2. ^ (by WNBC-TV's Jane Hanson on her Jane's New York special on the Diamond District)

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Diamond_District,_Manhattan". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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