1. Exceptionally vivid colors that outshine Australian opal and any other opal source. Yes the finest Australian black opal have no rivals but Wello Ethiopian opals are finer across the board. Even the low end of Ethiopian opals have exceptional colors. 2. Huge sizes larger than all sources,including Australia. Ethiopian opal commonly occurs in sizes over 10 carats, regularly over 30 carats and sizes up to and over 300 carats are not unknown. 3. Crystal opal considered as the high end of Australian opal is much more available in Ethiopia and because of thicker nature of Ethiopian rough opal we can facet Ethiopian opal with interesting effect. 4. The nature of Ethiopian opal rough allows for the typical cabochon cutting and lends itself to more unique cutting styles like sculpture and faceting. 5. Price Nice quality gems are available for under $40 per carat. Fine gems are $80 to $120 per carat and museum quality large gems can be found at $150 to $300 per carat (2014 prices). This is 60% less than comparable Australian and Mexican sources. 6. Toughest opal available. The Gemological Institute of America performed drop tests of opals from various sources including Australia. From 1.5 meters, almost 5 foot the opals were dropped onto concrete. Only the Ethiopian opal survived the test. 7. Ethiopian opal is highly resistant to the common problem of crazing. Crazing is the cracks that form when an opal loses its water content much like what happens to clay soils as they dry in the summer sun. Ethiopian opal is hydrophane meaning they readily absorb and release water without crazing issues. Crazing in Australian opal is common and destroys the opal value. 8. The variety of color is remarkable. The entire rainbow of roy.g.biv red,orange, yellow, green, blue, and yes indigo and violet can be found in Wello opals from Ethiopia. Not only do you find all of these colors in Ethiopian opals it is not uncommon to see the entire rainbow of colors in a single opal. 9. The variety of color patterns seems endless and the base colors can be, white, colorless (crystal), black, chocolate brown and orange. The orange and browns can have the most vivid color flashes of any opal. 10. Its the best gem investment available. Its new, discovered in 2008, most people even jewelers are unaware of this new source. It's great beauty, vivid colors, high clarity, large size, durability, and low price make Ethiopian Opal from Wello our number one investment recommendation.

By Steve Moriarty