Not long after our establishment in 1840, Queen Victoria of England reached out to Coster for a very special assignment. Without realizing it at that time, this assignment would mark the start of an impressive legacy.
Research by Pauline Willemse.
The diamond polishing factory M.E. Coster was founded by Mr. Moses Coster at the Binnen Amstel/Korte Houtstraat, at the Waterlooplein, in Amsterdam.
After the death of Moses Coster, his son Martin Coster took over the position of director of Coster. When Moses Elias Coster died, he left a will for his wife and 11 children. Three of them entered into a partnership. Meijer Moses (Martin) Coster was involved most in the company until he moved to Paris.
The company is managed by diamond cutter Abraham Eliazer Daniëls.
Martin Coster moves to Paris, where he sets up a cutting factory as well. In the following years he acquires a near-monopoly on diamond cutting in the world’s jewellery capital.
The main diamond of the British Crown Jewels, the Koh-I-Noor, needs to be recut. This diamond is one of the largest and oldest cut diamonds in the world. Coster was commisioned to arrange this, so he sends two of his best polishers, J. A. Fedder and L. B. Voorzanger to England to polish the Koh-I-Noor. They work for 38 days to transform the 186 carat Koh-I-Noor into a 105 carat oval brilliant.
Coster was visited by Count Leopold II of Belgium
The entire Amsterdam diamond industry wins a medal of honour at the World Exhibition in Paris. The Star of the South diamond is cut from the 225 carat rough to a 125 carat cushion brilliant by Coster in Amsterdam and exhibited in Paris. During the first state visit by a British monarch to France in 400 years, Queen Victoria dazzles Paris with the Koh-I-Noor set in her newly made crown diadem.
Dutch Crown Prince Willem Alexander of Oranje-Nassau visits Coster.
Dutch King Willem III of Oranje-Nassau and his son visit Coster. In the same year, Dutch Prince Frederik of Oranje-Nassau also pays a visit to the diamond polishing factory.
French Prince Napoleon Jozef Karel Paul Bonaparte visits Coster.
Martin Coster builds a replica of its polishing factory at the World Exhibition in Paris and supplies many diamonds to the Parisian jewellers exhibiting their work. The factory is one of the highlights of the exhibition and attracted worldwide media attention. In 1868 Martin Coster is appointed as Consul General of the Netherlands by King William III.
Egyptian Princes Hussein Kamel and Tewfik Pasha visit Coster.
Russian Tsarevitsj Nicolaas Aleksandrovitsj visits Coster.
The company exhibits in the World Exhibition in Paris. One of the most talked about exhibits is shown in this pavilion: the large diamond with King Willem III’s portrait engraved in it, made by M.C. de Vries, one of Coster’s cutters. The medallion still is one of the highlights in the Dutch Royal Collection.
Meijer Moses Coster (Martin) remained heir, but the company was run by Abraham Eliazer Daniels his son, who was a well-known municipal councillor in Amsterdam.
Martin Coster passes away in Paris. His impressive tombstone is located in the heart of MontMartre grave site in Paris, where he spent his last years. He is remembered in the Dutch media as one of the best Consuls General the Netherlands has ever had.
Austrian Empress Sisi and daughter Archbishop Valerie paid Coster a visit.
Italian Crown Prince Victor Emanuel III and his consort Helena Of Montenegro Petrović-Njegoš visit Coster.
Li Hongzhan, Viceroy of Zhili (now China) visits Coster.
Dutch Queen Wilhelmina and King Rama V of Siam visit Coster together.
The last heir and son of Guillaume Frederic Isidore (Willem) Coster and Julia Emanuel Coster was commissioner and Managing Director, but sold the company to Felix Theodort Manus. The company’s name was changed from M. E. Coster into N.V. Maatschappij tot Exploitatie der Diamantslijperij M. E. Coster.
The economic crisis hits the Netherlands pretty hard. Many diamond polishing factories had to close down, but Coster remained.
Because of the anti-Jewish occupation during WWII, Benjamin Manus was no longer allowed to lead the company. A Verwalter (leading person and German sympathizer) was serving in the name of the Wirtschaftsprüfstelle, selling all diamonds to Bozenhardt & Co.
Benjamin Manus and his family were send to the concentration camp Sobibor in Poland from where they did not return.
A business agent named Maurice Henri Spier, guided the company. Because of the Restitution of Legal Rights Decree, a lawyer continued to manage the company until 1956.
As a part of the post-war reconstruction, diamond cutter Wim Biallosterski was given the opportunity to buy Coster. The premises welcomed a diamond cutter, polisher, goldsmith, seller, jeweller, purchaser of rough diamonds and several partners, including Samual Gassan.
The people in The Netherlands collected money for a jointly gift – a bracelet watch – for the fiftieth birthday of Her Majesty Queen Juliana. The young but talented diamond polisher Ben Meier was commissioned to polish the more than 275 diamonds for the watch.
Together business partners Joop Schoos and Max Meents, Ben Meier founded “Coster Diamonds” and created a new future for the company.
Coster Diamonds found a new accommodation at the Museumplein, between the Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh Museum.
In Zaire, the Lucullan diamond was found. With its 181.15 carats it is the largest unpolished gem in the world and it is to be seen at Coster Diamonds.
Coster Diamonds formed with Amsterdam Diamond Center, Gassan Diamonds, Van Moppes Diamonds, Holshuijsen-Stoeltie Diamonds the Diamonds Foundation Amsterdam to jointly promote Amsterdam as Amsterdam City of Diamonds.
Current director Kees Noomen started his career at Coster Diamonds. He became Managing Director in 2001 and shareholder in 2006, together with Ben Meier and Errol Hotie. Kees is also actively involved in politics as a municipal councillor and party chairman.
Pauline Willemse complete the job at Coster Diamonds to polish a 57 faceted stone, weighing 0.0000743 carats, the smallest diamond in the world.
Coster Diamonds incorporates Van Moppes Diamonds.
Ten years later, Coster Diamonds was obliged to close the Van Moppes factory. Due to events like terrorism and Sars in the Far East, there weren’t enough visitors. A few years later, the Van Moppes factory was transformed into the very luxurious Sir Albert hotel.
Opening of the Diamond Museum Amsterdam next door to display some of the world’s most beautiful diamond artefacts.
Mr. Bobby Low and Mr. Donny Griffioen of Coster Diamonds introduce a new patented diamond cut with 201 facets instead of 57. This brilliant cut is called the Royal 201 and to this day it is the most sparkling diamond in the world.
Owner Ben Meier passes away on December 1st. Coster Diamonds is now owned by his daughters and CEO Kees Noomen & CFO Errol Hotie.
Coster Diamonds purchases Moppes Diamondland SPRL in the heart of Antwerp: The World Diamond Center. Diamondland is a self-reliant sister company of Coster.
Coster Diamonds celebrates the 175th anniversary
King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands grants Coster Diamonds the Honorary title Royal (Dutch: Koninklijk). This turned Coster Diamonds into Royal Coster. To become Royal, an organization has to be leading in its field of expertise, be of national importance and has to be in existence for at least 100 years.
CCO Annemieke Jansen receives honorary certificate for working at Royal Coster Diamonds for 50 years.
Royal Coster Diamonds opens the first diamond store outside Amsterdam. The “Amsterdam Diamond House” in the Designer Outlet Roermond, is a collaboration between Royal Coster Diamonds and GASSAN Diamonds.
Royal Coster developed a crest that belongs to our Royal Title. The crest contains all subjects that represent the core values of our company. At the same time it is a tribute to Martin Coster.
Royal Coster reveals a life size mosaic Miffy in the front yard, made by renowned artist Fabrice Hünd. This eye-catching statue makes a great place for taking photos of your trip to Amsterdam
Rama V’s great-great-granddaughter and Thai Princess Sirivannavari Nariratana visits us.
Of course, we do not only value our Royal visitors. We welcome and appreciate all of our guests and look forward to introduce you to the magical world of diamonds.