Spinel is perhaps one of the most underappreciated gems in the history. Not even recognised until the 18th century as a separate gem species. It was commonly mistaken for ruby and sapphire before testing methods were established. Many famous Royal gems turned out to be spinels, when finally tested. In this ironic way, it helped ruby and sapphire in becoming popular.
Spinel gemstones are being mined in many places: Burma, Viet Nam, Sri Lanka, Tanzania and many others. They come in most colours but pure yellow and green are rather unheard of. Recently spinel started gaining momentum, after new and very attractive varieties were discovered. Once the glowing hot pink Mahenge stones and vivid cobalt blue spinels of Luc Yen reached the market. They pushed boundaries of what colour was thought to be possible in natural gems. Such hues are certainly making an impression on the buyers and prices are rising steadily.