I recently auditioned the B&W 800 Diamonds and absolutely loved them. Unfortunately they're a little over my budget, although not by much.

I'd greatly appreciate if you nice folks could recommend a pair of speakers which come closest to these, but are slightly less expensive.

Well, can't compare the 800's, but on a slightly smaller scale, I owned the 802 Diamonds and now own Usher 8871 Diamonds, and I prefer the Ushers. So maybe they would be a contender for your budget vs the 800's.
Funny, I was going to recommend Ushers as well. The Mini Dancer 2 is only $5k and sounds and looks like it costs twice that.
Shouting Dude!!
I'll check out the USHERS.
Also what sort of amplification would you recommend with them.
Luckily I have the venerable K01 as source and some nice Kubala Sosna cables so am good as far as upstream chain is concerned. ;-}
Ebm, I don't understand your comment...
Apologies for my ignorance

Please ignore the people with no life and let us know what you end up with.

Good luck.
Spend the extra money and get what you really want. It's the cheapest way in the end. Otherwise, you buy something else, sell it at a loss and then buy the B&Ws anyway, but by then, the price went up. Just get it over with and enjoy. I only say this as you mentioned it was only slightly over budget. We should never spend recklessly.
KEF Model 207/2 seems to me similar to B&W 800 Diamonds, but cheaper.
I've decided to take Chayro's advice and am going ahead with the Diamonds!!
Thanks all.
I wish you many years of good listening. They are beautiful speakers.
There are a large number of speakers just as good (and better) for less money. Keep shopping.
800 Diamonds are GREAT speakers! Just make sure you have the amp and the room for them. That is critical.
Nothing against the Kef 207/2, I heard them on Mcintosh amps. But the 207/2 are not in the same league as the BW 800 Diamond speakers.
The BW 800 speakers have a superior midrange and bass response.
Revel Ultima Salon 2 and save a boatload.

Good enough for JRDG speaks volumes. Compare the Stereophile measurements. The difference appear to be slight but the Salons are said to have a more correct presentation with exceptional bottom.

Shahzada1, buy what you have heard and loved. I suspect that the reason so many people here complain about their systems is because they read too much and listen too little. Trust your ears.
I agree with the above. But anyway, Focal Utopia would be comparable. More expensive though...the bigger Electras might be as well.
I second the Revel Ultima2 Salons or Studios if you don't need truly full range. The other choice to listen to is NOLA Baby Grand Or anything in the NOLA lineup.

However if you really like the sound of the 800s then you should take a serious look at the 802D. Let your ears judge what you like best.