When a new client steps into Freddy’s Certified Diamonds & Fine Jewelry they might very well think they’ve stumbled across Prince Harry shopping for something sparkly for Meghan Markle. The man in question, however, is actually Diamond Specialist Eric Steinlauf, the son of Owner Howard Steinlauf. “I hear that I look like Prince Harry all the time,” says Eric, who spent much of his young childhood in the store cleaning the counters, taking naps and most importantly, to him at the time, eating. He went on to receive degrees in accounting and psychology from FSU, worked in the accounting field for a year then realized his true calling and got his Gemological Institute of America (GIA) degree. “My dad, who has been in the business over 30 years, didn’t push me into diamonds,” he says. “I realized I had the qualities for the job. I’m very artistic and help with the jewelry designs. I’m a knowledge-based salesman. I believe in building trust. There’s nothing more fulfilling than being able to make customers happy with our great quality and price. His next project is to grow the company’s web presence and social media platform. What does he do for fun? “I love to cook,” he says. “Sometimes I look up recipes when my father isn’t looking!”
“We’re not robots. We like to help clients, give them the human touch. The internet can be confusing. People think they’re going to beat the system by going online, but they’re not. Diamonds will always be something that must be seen in person.”
Freddy’s Certified Diamonds & Fine Jewelry was founded in 1975 by Freddy Strauss as a family-run business with the goal of providing its clientele with the highest-quality service and craftsmanship in every aspect of diamonds and fine jewelry. In 1994, Strauss expanded by partnering with Diamond Expert and Gemological Institute of America (GIA) graduate Howard Steinlauf to create the “Certified Diamond Store,” the only store of its kind that specializes in Certified Diamonds. In 2011, Howard’s son, Eric, joined the company to continue the “family-run” tradition into a new generation; FreddysJewelry.com.