Chef-driven fast casual Asian restaurant opens first location in Prosper Texas, with rapid expansion plans over next 3 years.

Chef BobTam and his partners have opened The Chinese Neighbor flagship location in North Texas. The restaurant was designed by David Santos of Ds3 Designs and offers an elevated menu. Signature items include “Dumpling Burger,” “Rice-Rocket” Salad, “Cheeseburger” Egg Rolls and variety of other modern Chinese dishes. The new concept is expected to redefine how we think about Asian fast-casual.

Tam already boasts an impressive track-record in his own rite. From shopping for fresh ingredients in the open-air markets of Hong Kong and San Francisco’s Chinatown, to growing nationally known restaurant brands; Tam has put his signature stamp on east / west cuisine. Most notably, he was the Executive Sous Chef at James Beard nominated Betelnut in San Francisco and also served as the head R&D Chef for PF Chang’s China Bistro. Bob is currently Executive Chef partner at Bitter & Twisted in Phoenix, AZ. He credits culinary icon Cecilia Chiang for shaping his career and inspiring many items on the menu. Today, Chef Tam is excited to debut the culmination of these inspirations in a fun, fresh light-hearted menu. The Chinese Neighbor delivers fine dining quality at a lower price point with the convenience of counter service.

“Our plan is to open additional locations over the next 3 years,” says partner Daniel Lu of Alida Restaurant Supply. “We already actively looking for our 2nd and 3rd restaurant locations.”

Lu, Tam and their partner; and Benny Sutanto, also with Alida Restaurant Supply, worked with Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones’ Blue Star Land, LLP and Lincoln Property on the construction and finish out of the space. The partners credit their unparalleled reputations and successful track records as key factors in creating the modern space and prime location for the restaurant. There are a relatively small number of dining options in the immediate area and population rates are exploding. These considerations make us especially excited introduce The Chinese Neighbor to the North Texas Marketplace,” says Benny Sutanto.

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"The city of Prosper is the fastest growing city in North Texas right now," says Executive Chef Partner Bob Tam. “The community is hungry for casual, high-quality restaurant experiences. And, I am excited to break-through stereotypes and share the flavors and dishes I’ve grown up with.

The group is actively looking in the Plano-Frisco area for its next location and hopes to open number two by mid 2020. The Chinese Neighbor is located at: 750 Richland Blvd, Suite 90, Prosper, TX 75078. The restaurant is open Mon–Sat from 11am – 2:30pm, Mon-Thurs from 4:30– 9pm and Fri-Sat from 4:30 – 10:00pm and closed on Sunday. For more information, go to: or 972-433-1088.

Lori Barber 

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Deborah Turner, Highland Park Resident Deborah Turner Opens the Scent Room in West Village.

The Scent Room, Dallas’ first independent, niche perfumery, is now open in the West Village in Uptown Dallas at 3699 McKinney Avenue, Suite 301, located next to Starbucks. The store carries more than 30 independent, hard to find niche perfumes such as Abel (a 100 percent natural line, Acqua Di Sardegna, Eight & Bob, Histories De Parfums, Juliette Has a Gun, Jusbox, Simone Andreoli and many more.

Many of the lines carried are not only virtually impossible to find in stores but also have incredible backstories and beautifully designed bottles, many of them could be considered works of art.

The store’s open concept is inviting and makes it easy to explore. There are no counters so shoppers are free to interact directly with the scents and the knowledgeable store associates who are specially trained in helping shoppers discover their own unique scent.

The in-store experience is designed to be just that … an experience,” explains Deborah Turner, who developed the concept for the store. “Finding the perfect scent takes time. Our guests are free to explore, sit, relax, enjoy a glass of wine or champagne.”

Deborah first became interested in the perfume industry during the early years of dating her husband. She recalls always complimenting him on how wonderful he smelled but never receiving the same compliment from him. One day, she took him to the perfume counter at the department store and made him pick out the scent he liked best.

While she and her husband both loved the scent she chose (Alien by Thierry Mugler), it was so mainstream that people immediately knew what it was. And that’s where the initial idea for The Scent Room was born.

Fast forward a few years later, she and her husband celebrated their 7th wedding anniversary in Italy where they were married. With the idea for The Scent Room still brewing in her mind, visiting a niche perfumery was at the top of her list during their trip. She passed by many but it wasn’t until they were in Siena that she found one she was compelled enough to visit. And that’s where Vincent Gambino, world-renowned perfumer enters the story. It was his knowledge and passion about the stories behind the scents that further fueled Deborah’s motivation for her new project.

Over the next few years, as she continued to develop her own scent “wardrobe,” she became more and more interested in bringing her idea of the perfect perfume discovery experience to Dallas.

Determined to learn from the very best, she contacted Vincent and spent several weeks in his perfume shop in Siena, Italy so she could learn the business. During her time in Italy, she was also able to accompany Vincent to the largest niche perfume show in the world, Escxence. He has since become both her mentor and her muse as she worked to develop the concept for The Scent Room.

“I believe we all want to smell nice, naughty or sexy,” says Deborah. “Whatever it is, it’s part of who we are and who we want to be at a given moment. Scents help create our persona and I’m thrilled to bring this exciting opportunity to the women and men of Dallas.”

A woman of many talents, Deborah, originally from Canada, is also a skilled jewelry designer and former actress and model. She’s appeared in more than 80 television commercials and made multiple guest appearances in television and film.

“While I’ve died a horrible gory death in a slasher movie,” Deborah laughs, “My career highlight as an actress was playing Burt Lancaster’s daughter in the television movie, Barnum.”

Members of the media interested in attending grand opening events should contact

For more information, visit or follow them on Facebook at @ScentRoom.


The far-reaching impact of international conflicts can have unanticipated effects in certain markets like the jewelry industry.  When buyers the world over railed against the sale of conflict diamonds, also known as “blood diamonds,” the diamond industry listened. The growing awareness of violence and human rights violations in Sierra Leone, Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia, and Ivory Coast meant that buyers wanted a guarantee that their money was not fueling wars.

The outrage against the blood wars spawned the Kimberly Process, which requires nations to prove that exported diamonds come from legitimate mining and sales processes.

So now the question becomes — should you buy synthetic or mined diamonds?

There is no difference in appearance. Synthetic diamonds are almost indistinguishable from mined diamonds. According to Patti Geolat, appraiser / estate jewelry buyer, the three most common reasons buyers opt for synthetic diamonds are that synthetics are conflict-free, green, and less expensive than mined diamonds.

The Kimberly Process has practically eliminated the first reason, but the second and third reasons bear a little further discussion.

“We don’t have full disclosure yet on the environmental impact of manufacturing diamonds,” explains Geolat. “However, raising your awareness and demanding that manufacturers be held accountable incentivizes them to keep their power plants green. In a way, if you want to be green, you should buy a pre-owned diamond since the diamond already exists. You know it’s not creating any new issues. It’s green, too, because it was mined out of someone’s jewelry box.”

As far as price, synthetic diamonds are only 20 – 30% below the price of mined diamonds. That may be significant for those who are just starting out their career or life process and may not have a large amount of disposable income.

Geolat notes that buyers in the market today are selecting from a variety of options for an engagement ring: a pre-owned diamond, a newly minded diamond, a synthetic diamond, a diamond simulant or an alternative gemstone like sapphire.

“Depending on what you like,” says Geolat, “some people opt to buy the mounting they like and set it with a diamond simulant or an alternative gemstone, until they can save up for a natural diamond. If you get an alternative gemstone, you’re still pulling it out of the earth, which has an environmental impact. The concerns about mined diamonds are legitimate, but I don’t think there is one answer that is going to satisfy all concerns.”

Wearing two hats like she does, Geolat is often asked about the resale value of a new purchase.  It can be an uncomfortable conversation to have, but arguably it is no different from the realities of making any large purchase. At some point, you may want to trade in your diamond.  The nature of market fluctuations is such that no-one can guarantee what the value of your synthetic diamond will be at that point.  However, if history is any indication, there may be very little, if any, resale value for synthetic diamonds. Give us a call at 972.239.9314 or send us an email to to make an appointment to discuss your options.

When it comes to purchasing diamonds, identify your concerns and listen to advice to make an informed choice, but in the end the decision to go with synthetic or mined diamonds is entirely up to you.

We encourage readers to join in the conversation. Do you buy synthetic or mined diamonds? Why?


The holidays are for friends, family, and looking ahead to the next chapter in life. Many people are starting that next chapter with an engagement ring. These days, shopping for this engagement ring often includes both partners, and becomes their first major purchase together.

Because fashion is cyclical, it should come as no surprise that art deco, combined with all things vintage, is back in style. Designers like Neil Lane and the eminent Vera Wang are looking to the 30s for inspiration, some manufacturers are reproducing original vintage designs, and estate jewelers are searching for original art deco engagement rings.

Patti Geolat, appraiser / estate jewelry buyer, has a busy month ahead of her. With five shows in December, Geolat is in the holiday mood and wants to share with you some trends she has seen regarding the purchase of vintage engagement rings. I stopped by to ask her what she has noticed in the buying patterns regarding vintage and vintage-inspired engagement rings and this is what she had to say:

The Brand Buyer

This designer-conscious consumer typically has no background in purchasing antique or vintage jewelry, but they are very confident and sure of what they want in their new purchase. They may shop at a local, more traditional retail jewelry store with whom they have an established buying history. Often, they are looking for pieces created by designers they are familiar with from a jeweler they already trust. These traditional retail stores may offer customizable designs, which is very appealing to some buyers who like to have a sense of making the ring their own.

Most traditional stores carry new jewelry, but there are some with pre-owned departments. However, unless they have a fully curated collection of pre-owned jewelry, they are unlikely to have a varied selection of vintage and antique engagement rings.

The Old Is New Buyer

Due to the craze for art deco design, some manufacturers are reproducing new pieces from vintage models, which is a middle ground that some buyers are looking for. If a retail store has experience in selling estate and pre-owned jewelry, they may carry some of these designs. If the store does not have a certain model a buyer wants in stock, they can order it. The newly finished ring is then cast from a vintage model, but usually with modern gemstones.

The Vintage Buyer

This person often has a passion for all things vintage, and recognizes the tremendous value in buying a pre-owned piece of jewelry. For estate jewelry, what you see is what is available, so the chase and search of finding the right piece drives them. They love the history and charm of being part of the legacy of the particular vintage ring. The old adage “They just don’t make them like they used to,” combined with that old world feel is what fuels their passion. Vintage engagement rings are not necessarily all handmade, but the hand-tooling and hand-finishing make each piece special. Estate jewelry also speaks to someone on a budget, because they understand the value of pre-owned jewelry.

Be on the lookout for Patti Geolat’s next show in December. And remember to get an appraisal of that that ring whether it is new or pre-loved. Call Judy for your appointment. 972.239.9314



Becoming a collector of estate jewelry is tricky. It is one thing to have a passing interest, but quite another to be considered a serious collector. For those just starting out, Patti Geolat, appraiser/estate jewelry buyer from Dallas, Texas, has a few tips for buying your first piece and for making collecting an enjoyable experience.

Buy what you like. If you know you like it, you will be excited to wear it, and will exude confidence every time you put it on. Know your style and don’t buy something trendy if your style is more classic. “My experience,” says Geolat, “is that a great way to start your adventure is to start with something that really speaks to you.”

Budget wisely. If you are not planning on collecting aggressively, if you are not going to jump into the deep end, then you might want to buy a piece that is a little more mainstream–the little black dress of estate jewelry, if you will. If you only have one or two pieces, and the budget doesn’t allow for more, then you might want to get something you will wear over and over again.
Do your homework. People don’t even go to the movies without reading the reviews. If you are new to acquisition, then every piece might look fresh and original to you. Be aware of how to make an informed choice before you start spending all your money. A little bit of homework on what is popular, what is trending, what is long lasting, what is perennial goes a long way, but it is equally important to know who you are buying from. Research the dealer’s background, their expertise, and how long they have been in business. A dealer might be making unfounded assertions about relative value and desirability because they don’t have a wide range of experience. Compare their assertions to what the market as a whole believes. If you are spending a significant amount of money, a portion of the price may be related to provenance–who the prior owner was, in addition to who designed it, the age of the piece, and the materials. If a dealer says a piece is made with natural pearls, a diamond of a particular quality, untreated gemstones or owned by a particular celebrity, you may want to ask for this in writing.

Don’t overthink it.
 All that being said, collecting should be an enjoyable experience. Don’t get lost analyzing every component part of a piece and forget about the overall look. How a piece looks and makes you feel is just as important.

“Fashion you can buy, but style you possess. The key to style is learning who you are, which takes years. There’s no how-to road map to style. It’s about self-expression and, above all, attitude.” –Iris Apfel, Fashion Icon. 


The 70s are back in fashion: velvet, florals, suede, and fringe are everywhere. Models strut down the runways in flowing, couture boho looks and collar necklaces, just like Ali McGraw. Fashion is cyclical, and there are similar movements in the jewelry consumers are buying these days. 

“In times past, some people did not feel they could define themselves stylistically, so they would shop by brand,” explains Patti Geolat. “In the late 70s, buyers became much more brand conscious. It seems to be a generational thing.  People now are setting their own standards and their own styles. There are certain periods of time where people tended to wear sets of jewelry; now not only do they not need the match, but they will go out of their way to make sure they don't match. I will often wear fine jewelry with nice large gemstones that are reasonably expensive, right next to costume jewelry in the same outfit. Sometimes even in the same layers of necklaces."

For the majority of the 20th century, jewelry was primarily hand finished or hand fabricated. While many of the component parts of jewelry from the 40s and 50s were mass produced, craftsmen would still assemble, hand finish, and hand polish the piece.  As demand was driven by the availability of jewelry at lower prices, mass production exploded. “I can show two pieces of jewelry to a consumer, and they can see the difference in quality and craftsmanship,” says Geolat.

“Estate and vintage jewelry that was being produced in the mid-century, when the price of gold was around $200 per ounce, may be heavier relative to jewelry that is being produced today.  For this reason, buying estate jewelry at this time, can be a tremendous value”.

While most estate dealers specialize in one era—promoting Victorian or all gold, for example—Geolat’s collection is the exact opposite. Dealing in everything from designer vintage to expensive contemporary jewelry, Geolat’s collection includes pieces that are under $200 to over $1,000,000.

Whether you are buying or selling, Patti Geolat is an expert in her field and can provide guidance to you. For those looking to acquire their first piece of estate jewelry, “I would suggest that the primary reason to buy something is because you like it and it speaks to you. Then, if you're fortunate enough to own it for a long time and it has increased in value, that's an added bonus."

For more information, please contact Judy Asa at

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Owning a piece of jewelry, no matter the price range, is a meaningful keepsake for many people. Many celebrate a special occasion with a piece of jewelry or receive a special item as an inheritance.

Most people own at least one piece of jewelry. This may include necklaces, earrings, engagement and wedding rings, antique jewelry, custom jewelry, as well as estate jewelry. However, what most people don’t realize is the importance of protecting these valuables. As a result, getting an appraisal often gets shoved down the list of priorities. Whenever you purchase or receive a new piece of jewelry it is essential that you insure it in a timely fashion. This will cover your precious jewelry if something is to happen after getting it in your possession. It doesn’t matter if you have only one piece of jewelry or a whole collection; having an appraisal done for insurance purposes is a life saver when the unthinkable happens. Don’t believe us? Here are some reasons why you should have your jewelry appraised:

  • While it matters, your voice alone is not good enough in the event of theft, damage, or loss. Documentation from a certified source is required, and an appraisal can attest to the design, quality and condition of your jewelry.
  • The market is constantly fluctuating, so it is important to realize that value and cost are not the same. The value of gemstones, diamonds, and metal fluctuates daily. Even if your receipt states that you paid a certain amount, the market is never static so the value can change.
  • Knowing the value is essential to the insurance process. The value of your jewelry can affect your premium, and due to the fluctuating market values, your insurance policies should change accordingly.

Insurance companies will typically cover your jewelry if it is stolen to a limit. Damage or loss may have to be added to your policy, so it is vital that you check to see what is covered with your insurance agent. However, not all of the insurance policies you have may cover the full appraised value of your jewelry, so it’s important to update your policies regularly to ensure adequate coverage. If you’ve ever wondered why it’s recommended to update your appraisal every 2 to 3 years, the answer is simple, for protection and peace of mind! Because of the fluctuating market values of silver, gold, diamonds, and jewelry, it is important to stay on top of the changing market so you are current with inflation prices. The value of that wedding ring may change few cents from day to day, but the value can change dramatically over the course of a few years. This is why it is vital that you have a current, updated appraisal so your insurance agent can ensure that you are protected accordingly from the unexpected.

Here at Geolat we specialize in providing our customers with comprehensive appraisal services. Remember, paying for an appraisal is a cheap investment for a big value, so if you are looking to have an item appraised, give us a call or send an email today.

Contact: or (972) 239-9314


If someone asked you to look through your contacts and make a list of the people you consider to be among your most trusted advisors, who would you include? Would the list include an Attorney? Would the list include a Doctor, Banker or Insurance Agent? We thought so. What about a qualified Appraiser? Aaahhh… most people don’t think about that! Here are 4 unexpected benefits you gain by working with an Appraiser on a regular basis.

You Make Better Choices- Once you form a relationship with an Appraiser you’ll find that you make better choices regarding a variety of valuation decisions. Some assume that having an item appraised is a one-and-done process. It’s truly not and here’s why. Your insurance coverage needs will change as you move throughout various life stages. For example, you might opt for more insurance coverage earlier in your life, thus spending more money on insurance premiums because replacing the item could be cost prohibitive. Later in life you might opt for less coverage when your ability to replace the item may be easier to do without the added assistance of insurance coverage. 

Insurance rates change and so do values. What was once the most highly sought after and precious item 3 decades ago, might not be so hot today, thus making the item less costly to replace. A certified appraiser can help you evaluate these cycles every 3-5 years and guide you through determining the best course of action for your particular life stage.

 You’ll Make New Purchases With A Greater Sense Of Confidence- Acquiring an item of value, may come with a degree of uncertainty. We at Geolat frequently provide our clients with “New Purchase Consultations” as well as providing “How to Buy”business card sized tips * to keep with you as a handy reminder of what to-do when you’re making a buying decision. Most of our clients find it easy (and reassuring) to know they can simply call us to let us know they’d like to bring new items in for an appointment. Your trusted appraiser gives you the peace of mind in confirming your new acquisitions.   

You’ll Be Less Likely to Overlook Maintenance & More Likely to Prevent Loss - Assessment of the condition of your property is part of every appraisal we provide. This alerts you to any items that might be in need of attention, before you suffer an unexpected loss. This is especially helpful with your valuable scheduled pieces.

You’ll be more comfortable when talking to your lawyer, financial advisor,  accountant or estate planner- No one ever wants to find an attorney in the heat of a crisis, during a time when they need one most. The same is true with an Appraiser. Whether your needs include bankruptcy, divorce, estate settlement or some other form of support, Geolat is here to help you.  When you need appraisal advice, it is far better to already have a relationship with someone who is familiar with you and your family. Your Appraiser might also be able to provide options you had not considered. 

About Patti Geolat & The Geolat Advantage- Like all experts who provide you with professional services throughout the stages of your life, you can not underestimate the intangible value you will receive when you work with Geolat.  From having expert knowledge and over 30 years of experience at your fingertips, to guiding you through a maze of insurance coverage options (which we’ll be expanding upon soon) we make buying, selling and appraising a very personalized, easy and convenient process.

Patti Geolat’s distinguished reputation as the go-to appraiser in Dallas, as well as nationally, has been unsurpassed for the past 30 years. Her opinion is valued by the jewelry industry and the worldwide media alike. Patti’s 15 years of experience on the Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company’s Board of Directors, including 9 years as the Board Chair, offers you a hard to find perspective on value, insurance and best practices.


* For your copy of our “How to Buy” business card sized tips,

please email your request to Judy Asa at


If you are planning to buy jewelry for a millennial this year, they’d better “go vintage”... It’s a huge trend according to National Jeweler. It’s the story behind the bauble that speaks the most to that age group.  Millennials want one-of-a-kind pieces that are truly unique, especially for Christmas. Appraiser and Private Collector, Patti Geolat is giving holiday shoppers the opportunity to make a little room in the jewelry box this year. She's also giving shoppers an opportunity to fund their holiday shopping budgets and buy something truly special for everyone on the "nice" lists.....especially if that person is a millennial. 

Patti Geolat will be showcasing a wide variety of beautiful baubles from her own private collection at Fast Fix in Northpark Center on December 15th through the 17th. And remember, when you sell at the event you'll have peace of mind knowing your precious heirlooms are going to a no-melt shelter and will be lovingly placed in new homes.

Showcasing Beautiful Items


Yellow gold and amethyst, David Webb earrings-David Webb (1925-1975) was an American jeweler. He founded David Webb Jewelry. Among his clients were Elizabeth Taylor, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, & Barbra Streisand. Helen Mirren, Jennifer Garner and Beyoncé have also worn his jewelry. Born in Asheville, North Carolina in 1925, Webb was a self-taught designer whose work included dragon bracelets, Maltese cross brooches and animal motifs. In 1964 The Duke of Windsor purchased a bracelet for his wife. Diana Vreeland, a noted columnist and editor of Harper's Bazaar and Vogue was often seen with a David Webb, black and white enamel zebra bangle. Webb died from pancreatic cancer in 1975. Estate jewelers Mark Emanuel, Sima Ghadamian and Robert Sadian purchased the business in 2010. A retrospective exhibition was mounted at Norton Museum of Art in Palm Beach

Yellow gold and citrine bracelet, from late 1940’s-Big bold and post WW II when the US was celebrating prosperity and GI’s returning home.... 

Yellow gold and turquoise necklace-Yellow gold and turquoise will be back in the spring of 2016 according to Women’s Wear Daily and we agree

No appointments needed to view the estate jewelry pieces but if you want a consultation to sell your jewelry, contact us at (214) 361-2811 for an appointment time.


Chef Kent Rathbun's burger and bbq restaurant in Plano will be opening in June.

We are looking for exceptional applicants, who are passionate about hospitality, to join the team at our newest location at 8100 Dallas Parkway, Plano, Tx.  Ideal candidates will have prior restaurant experience. Benefits are available for full-time employees.  Apply online at:

  • Cocktail Server - Full Service in Cocktail Area of Restaurant, must be TABC certified
  • Bartender - Full Service behind bar, must be TABC certified
  • Food Runner - Employee will arrange, expedite, and run food to table in bar and dining room
  • Bar Back - support, stocks, and cleans main bar
  • Greeter - welcomes guests and answers phones 
  • Grill Cook - operates and prepares food on wood burning grill
  • Saute Cook - sautee and prepare food
  • Hot Apps - fry cook and appetizer food preparation
  • Pantry Cook - Salad and Side Item preparation
  • Dishwasher - cleans and stocks plates, kitchen utensils, and glass ware