|Lambros and Elna Magiafas with Elvis.|
Lambros Goldsmiths has been selling fine jewelry in Annandale for 28 years – and that makes it one of the oldest, continually operating businesses in the community.
While the shop’s owner, Lambros Magiafas, now operates five other jewelry stores – four in Alaska and one in Hawaii, catering to cruise ship passengers – he has a special affection for Annandale. “It’s a wonderful, safe place to raise a family,” he says.
Magiafas has shown his commitment to strengthening the community by agreeing to be the top sponsor of the Taste of Annandale, a celebration taking place June 13 along Tom Davis Drive featuring food from a variety of local restaurants, plus live entertainment, children’s activities, and a chili cook-off.
“The Taste of Annandale will bring people together, and will encourage people to get to know each other,” Magiafas says. He hopes it will become an annual event.
While you can find high-end, one-of-a-kind pieces at Lambros Goldsmiths – like a $100,000 30-carat diamond bracelet set in 18-karat white gold – there are plenty of items in the $50 range. And that makes the store a great place to find a Mother’s Day, graduation, or wedding gift to fit any budget.
Magiafas has been working with jewelry since he was a boy growing up on the island of Crete. He didn’t want to work in his father’s coffee shop, so at the age of 12, he secured an apprenticeship at a jewelry store. After high school and a stint in the military, he visited the United States and decided to relocate to Annandale, and says, “I’m still here.”
He started out with a small jewelry business in leased space at the Kreuger antique center on Little River Turnpike (currently occupied by Café Chocolate) and worked nights at a jewelry store in Springfield Mall.
“I always wanted to open my own shop,” he says, and in 1987, that dream came true when he founded Lambros Goldsmiths at 7137-C Little River Turnpike. That property used to be the site of Bob’s Big Boy, he says.
His wife, Elna, can usually be found behind the counter, while Lambros spends much of his time in the back of the store working with gemstones and using wax molds to “create designs to complement the beauty of the stone.” Their dogs, Elvis and Gizmo, have the run of the shop.
Magiafas has been recognized with three first-place awards in jewelry design from the Maryland-Delaware-Washington, D.C., Jewelers Association. “I love what I’m doing,” he says.