Giancarlo Designs enjoys an appreciative presence in the SOMI business community.       – By Donna Shelley

Giancarlo Designs is a family-owned and operated jewelry business that has been in the City of South Miami for 20 years. Juan Carlos Martell, Cristi Martell, and their son Giancarlo work in the beautifully appointed store located on Sunset Drive. The three continue what is a long line as purveyors of gold, designers of jewelry, and providers of exceptional service.

Juan Carlos Martell began his career working with his family in the Italian gold import business. It was one of the largest importers in the United States. He has been in the gold and jewelry line for over 40 years. He is the president, CEO, and senior designer for Giancarlo Designs. His wife, Cristi is vice president, treasurer, and a certified diamond purchaser (she also owns a separate diamond company). Giancarlo is a designer for the company who monitors fashion trends. He wrote fashion articles for SOMI Magazine for a number of years.

The Martell family creates a friendly atmosphere in their shop, yet with a level of knowledge and sophistication concerning their products that earns the trust of their clients. That trust extends to their jewelry repair, their ability to repurpose heirloom gems into more modern designs (the Green Jewelry Project), and other product lines such as certified luxury watches, vintage sunglasses, and estate jewelry and decorative items. 

For over 20 years, the family has been creating jewelry statements with their line that incorporates pre-Castro government Cuban coins. The Varadero Beach collection features vintage silver coins that they repurposed as jewelry. This one-of-a-kind fine custom jewelry studio is fashion-forward and inspirational, creating pieces with their customers
in mind.

Giancarlo Designs enjoys a strong local clientele as well as clients from Hong Kong, Europe, Russia, and Central and South America. They have been creating jewelry for three and four generations of clients, beginning with their work in the Seybold Building in Miami. The Martell family continues to advertise their South Miami store, but they have found that good, old-fashioned word of mouth seems to work best. Their motto is, “For those who know.”

Shopping is a delight in this well-appointed store. Conversing with professional jewelers and receiving respectful service concerning your heirloom or special piece of jewelry is what makes Giancarlo Designs a standout business. The attention to detail and the level of creativity are on display in every showcase: ingenuity, quality of stones, and precise craftsmanship. There is a faith in this quality of workmanship that keeps loyal clientele coming to the shop through the generations while continuing to attract new customers. 

The recent COVID-19 lockdown had an impact on their business, like many businesses in the country and right here in South Miami. But Juan Carlos believes that business is slowly returning to normal as loyal clientele has begun coming in to see what’s new and to order something special for the holidays.

“Every year, we have a theme for Christmas. This year it will be a Golden Christmas,” said Juan Carlos.

The family with Gloria & Emilio Estefan at the Cuba Nostalgia event.

Giancarlo Designs is located at 5794 Sunset Drive. Contact them at 305-661-6121, visit online at, and check them out on Facebook.


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