As its name suggests, the Paraiba tourmaline belongs to the group of tourmalines and is by far the rarest and most coveted variety of tourmaline. It was first found in Brazil in the northeaster state of Paraiba in 1989. Today, Paraiba tourmalines are mined in Mozambique and Nigeria, although these sites produce very little material that is worth cutting for. The mines in Brazil have long been depleted and no longer produce gemstones.
Paraiba tourmalines are popular because of their unusual, neon blue colour. This characteristic, intensely bright blue is also called swimming pool blue.