Catering to an international clientele, patrons of Carrazza Jewelers are privy to one of the most expanded collections of timepieces and fine 18-karat gold jewelry in the world. Owner Ed Suhyda works with more than 100 European designers in 10 countries, which he personally visits in order to unearth the most unusual pieces, offering only the best selections of baubles, objets d’art, and collectible heirlooms.
With original entrepreneurial goals of operating a pizza parlor, Suhyda found himself unexpectedly collecting unique pieces of jewelry on the side. “I would go to Europe several times each year and bring back some of the most unusual necklaces, earrings, bracelets, and rings,” Suhyda said. “I was collecting all of these pieces and it got out of hand because I had no place to store or showcase them.” Realizing his passion for the fine jewelry trade, he decided to blindly open a jewelry boutique, with very little experience to back it up. “I really didn’t have a clear idea in the beginning of what I was doing,” he explains. “My inventory was small and only consisted of pieces that appealed to my own personal tastes.” Years later, Ed takes pride in the fact that the only reason he’s still in the jewelry business today is why his peers doubted him almost three decades ago. He only buys pieces he truly loves, not necessarily what pleases the masses. Industry experts believed that no one would buy from him because he was more of a collector. But with time, he unarguably proved that he had it right all along.
Carrazza’s compilation of exclusive jeweled items includes many unconventional novelty pieces that intrigue aficionados worldwide. Each year, the same London craftsmen who design jewels for members of England’s royal family hand-make five unique pieces exclusively for Carrazza Jewelers. Among his current inventory is a jack-in-the-box-style pin with a tiny opulent cat popping out of a blue hand-enameled purse. Crafted with only the finest luxury stones and metals, the feline figure is outfitted in platinum and diamonds, with canary diamonds in place of eyes, while the pet’s pouch is designed in 18-karat yellow gold. He also showcases a stunning red-enameled honey jar in 18-karat yellow gold, in which cognac diamonds are the stone of choice, representing the color of honey. Pressing the bumblebee on the front of the jar allows a bear with hinged paws to spring up. Commenting on the exceptional rareness of these types of pieces, Ed explains, “Our jewelry will never be melted down, it will only be handed down.”
Collectors often discover Carrazza Jewelers for the first time at the sumptuous showcase it displays during the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show each year, which this year will be taking place from October 29 through November 2 (see Haute Living’s guide to the show on page 84). With 100 megayachts on display directly behind his building, Carrazza enjoys a prime location for luxury lovers who are perusing the super ships docked at Bahia Mar, the main port of the show.
Moving from his display booth at the show to the interiors of his specialty shop, guests not only find fine jewelry pieces, but are also enveloped in the eccentric collection of sculptured pieces in his art gallery, Xcentrics. Some of the favorite standouts in the gallery include a polar bear crafted from white jade sourced from the Ural Mountains in Russia and a ruby koala bear handcarved in Germany. The gallery also presents an incredible collection of the finest scrimshaw ever crafted from the ivory of the woolly mammoth, which is 11,000 to 40,000 years old. President Kennedy first introduced scrimshaw to the collecting world, and its popularity has endured ever since, with one of the most highly collectible forms of scrimshaw showing up on woolly mammoth tusks.
In addition to the jewels and sculptures, Ed Suhyda takes no time off from his passion for his trade, a trait that led him to be recruited by Pierre Kunz, one of the most creative watchmakers in the world. Based out of Geneva, Kunz produces only 2,000 watches a year. Suhyda jokes that Kunz can be his own worst enemy because the distinctive designs are so unique that they are not easily recognized. “It’s always easier to make a watch that everyone can identify,” he explains. “However, a Pierre Kunz watch is like wearing an Aston Martin on your wrist—only a true watch connoisseur would know the difference. People don’t recognize his name as they would a Rolex because none of his innovative creations ever look the same. Most people buy watches to impress someone else. When you buy a Pierre Kunz, you buy it to impress yourself.”
Ed Suhyda’s unique taste in fine jewelry and timepieces is not questioned any longer and his love for eccentric collectibles led to his greatest business endeavor. As Carrazza customers often say, once you discover Carrazza, there’s not turning back.
801 Seabreeze Blvd.
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33316