Scented christmas trees & more from Maison Francis Kurkdjian

Maison Francis Kurkdjian has pulled out all the stops this season, offering new and exciting ways to scent your home (and yourself!) From fragrant Christmas trees, scented caligraphy cards and the most goregous candle, there’s also excellent news for fans of a certain best-selling fragrance who’d believe in going big or going home…

There’s no doubt that perfumer Francis Kurkdjian is one of the most stylish people we know. From the exquisite fine fragrances and accessories that have made him world famous, to his personal flair when designing the so-chic boutiques and decorating his own (of course ultra fabulous) Parisian apartment. Borrowing a little of that effortless élan for some French contemporary style, Maison Francis Kurkdjian invite you to come inside and ‘…plunge into a unique universe where the art and pleasure of giving become one. Fragrances and candles wait patiently by the Christmas tree, the theme chosen by Francis Kurkdjian, as the quiet and elegantly dressed witnesses of the season’s celebrations.’

‘O Christmas tree, o Christmas tree, how lovely is thy fragrance…’

Mon beau Sapin, the iconic holiday candle by Maison Francis Kurkdjian, now comes in a dark green colour adorned with a fir bough decorated in white and gold. Its generous, characteristic smell of a balsam fir, slightly resinous, slowly guides us towards a reassuring forest. This candle, with its specific wintery enveloping fragrance brings the finishing touch to the joyful holiday mood and memories past.

Maison Francis Kurkdjian Mon Beau Sapin Candle £55 for 190 g, at Selfridges new MFK counter

 

If you’re one of the many (many!) fragrant fans of the iconic Baccarat Rouge 540 extrait de parfum, or you know someone who is, get ready to squeal quite a lot. A whopping great supersize-me version of the fragrance has been created especially for Christmas, standing proud at 200ml, and definitely subscribing to the belief that bigger is better.

‘Baccarat Rouge 540 was born of the encounter five years ago between Baccarat and Maison Francis Kurkdjian, two luxury houses with a shared passion for know-how. Baccarat Rouge 540 tells the story of how gold is magically transformed into red, a process whose secret is known only by Baccarat. Blended with 24-karat gold dust and gradually fused until it reaches precisely 540 degrees, Baccarat’s transparent crystal slowly dons a dazzling red hue.’

This fragrance has been a world-wide best-seller for a reason: it smells incredible – we know exactly where a certain member of The Perfume Society team has been because she trails this everywhere she goes. It’s available as an eau de parfum in the clear crystal bottle and as an extrait de parfum in a deep, ruby red bottle; and if this is a present for someone you love, it’s certainly not only Santa that’s getting snogged under the mistletoe this year!

Maison Francis Kurkdjian Baccarat Rouge 540 extrait de parfum £590 for 200ml at Harvey Nichols, Selfridges, John Lewis, Les Senteurs, Harrods & franciskurkdjian.com

Thursday to Sunday there will be caligraphy on specially scented Christmas cards at the new Maison Francis Kurkdjian Selfridges counter. And they are also offering a mini Mon Beau Sapin candle as a free gift with purchase. (We absolutely will not judge you if you decide to keep this for yourself. The person you’re buying the gift for will never know, right? Right. And we’ll be doing the same, so…)

Finally, if you needed another reason to pop across to France (with the car, we think, for this one…) before Christmas, then look no further than the wonder that is a scented Maison Francis Kurkdjian Christmas tree! Sadly these are not available in the U.K. this year, but those seeking the ultimate in festive fragrance can delight in them at the following stores:

Perfumed and fireproofed Nordmann Tree, 100/120 cm:
Green natural tree from 145 euros*
Flocked tree with natural dusting from 185 euros*
Flocked integral white tree from 205 euros*
*(Suggested retail price excluding delivery)

Order from Parisian shops Maison Francis Kurkdjian:
Boutique Saint Honoré – 5 rue d’Alger, Paris 1er – +33 1 42 60 07 07
Boutique Marais – 7 rue des Blancs-Manteaux, Paris 4ème – +33 1 42 71 76 76

The mere descriptions, let alone gawping at these pictures, makes us feel instantly more stylish; and we find that theme of the Holiday tree on all accompanying boxes, gift sets, tissue paper and bags – illustrations and images drawn by Kurkdjian himself and created by his design team. So if you’re searching for that perfect present for someone special, hankering after treating yourself for a change, or heavily hinting to loved ones (we find choosing the Print Screen option and circling the ones you want in red while mouthing ‘THOSE PLEASE’ works really well); you’ll find that ‘…everything at Maison Francis Kurkdjian comes together to create a wintry harmony where an eye for detail lies at the heart of the creative process.’ Naturellement!

By Suzy Nightingale

Buly 1803 at the Louvre

Eight masterpieces have inspired eight world-famous perfumers to create fragrances for L’Officine Universelle Buly 1803 – the ancestral beauty, fragrance, home and lifestyle brand revived by Ramdane Touhami and his wife and business partner, Victoire de Tallac.

Buly 1803 invited The Perfume Society to a private view of the fragrances alongside the artworks within the Louvre. Yes, a private view – no jostling crowds or security guards moving you along, just a small group of journalists wandering the magnificent building, the hallways echoing to the sounds of our footsteps, the smell of beeswax a clue to the wooden floors being polished, our voices hushed, reverential, as though we were in church.

Before we entered the sanctuary of art – and now, scent – we asked Victoire how the project had come about, and why, with the greatest respect, the Louvre had asked a (still relatively small) niche company to create the perfumes, when they could have had any number of famous French fragrance houses beating a path to their door. ‘I think they really wanted to collaborate with us because they’re still interested in working with modern artists, to show the power that art still has to inspire,’ she explained.

Inspirational indeed, when one considers the artworks arrayed here represent some of the most famous pieces in the world. As we walked by faces looking out at us from the golden frames or perched atop marble plinths, it felt strangely like visiting a gallery of dear friends, glancing in our wake.

One by one, we were led to particular pieces the perfumers had chosen as the inspiration for their fragrance. An art historian explained each work in great depth, with the perfumers standing by to explain their process, and of course to let us smell their final creations.

Describing how they had worked together, Victoire said that ‘Ramdane had a very clear idea of what he wanted to do, allowing the perfumers to pick the artwork and creating a perfume based on it. They had completely free reign, they could choose anything.’ Perhaps unsurprisingly, none of them chose The Mona Lisa – it would have been a bit obvious, it’s become the one painting most people in the world could probably name as being housed at the Louvre. And really, as you will see, there are far more beguiling oeuvre to become enamoured by…

Conversation in a Park – interpreted by Dorothée Piot

Gainsborough’s painting of courtly flirtations within an idyllic landscape inspired the perfumer, Piot, to add sharp, cooling touches of peppermint and bergamot to an imposing bouquet of Ottoman roses. One can almost hear the laughter, the stiff rustle of shot taffeta, a snapshot of shared intimacy that’s thought to be Gainsborough himself, with his wife.

Buly say: ‘Behind the green, sylvan curtain of a theatre of the tender touch, a ray of sunlight, redolent of berries and citrus, illuminates the temple of the soul. On a carpet of peppermint, the silky petals of the dress unfold like the heart of a rose; a flush rises to the cheeks. In the air, sweet nothings float.’

The Valpinçon Bather – interpreted by Daniela Andrier

The luminescent skin of Jean-Auguste Dominique Ingres’ Bather just glows from the canvas, and perfumer Andrier translates the glorious textures using a stimulating burst of citronella and orange blossom, embellished with rich patchouli and a smoky drift of incense.

Buly say: ‘Steam rising from marble sluiced with waves of heated water, dampened muslin wraps the shining limbs, delicately soaped; susurrations of the hammam. After bathing, resting on fresh sheets, the skin, still beaded with moisture, is chafed with lavender and orange blossom; now refreshed, its velvety pallor like an iris petal pearled by a mist of incense and musk.’

The Venus de Milo – interpreted by Jean-Christophe Hérault

Here, Héreault reconstructs the languid sensuality of the female form using an intoxicating combination of mandarin, jasmine and amber – a quietly imposing blend that seems to swoon on the skin rather than merely be applied.

Buly say: ‘Gentle white of jasmine, of neroli, of the matte and polished petals of magnolia, amber and sacred wood. Eternal, without past or present, the beauty of the marble goddess, elusive and notional, lifts up the soul with timeless bliss.’

The Lock – interpreted by Delphine Lebeau

Fragonard’s much-discussed painting provided Lebeau’s fragrant muse, seeking to evoke the sexually charged possible danger of the scene juxtaposed by the opulent velvet drapery, with a combination of lily and musk to create her bewitching scent.

Buly say: ‘Scent of the apple on the table, fruit carried to the lips like a kiss, to the neck, the breast. Ardent desire entangled in linen sheets, tousled hair, traces of the teeth on tender skin, its white musk scorched scarlet by love’s burning touch; the heady thrill of an illicit rendez-vous.’

Saint Joseph the Carpenter – interpreted by Sidonie Lancesseur

Georges de La Tour’s tender depiction of Joseph’s weather-beaten face, lit by candelight and looking with concern at the infant Jesus, is demonstrated by Lancesseur with a deep, resonant thrum of cedar wood suddenly illuminated by verbena, pink berries and vetiver.

Buly say: ‘The golden orange blossom and incense ignite in the amber night, humming with vetiver and cedarwood. In a censer, spices and dry herbs smoulder to keep the spirits at bay. A gesture is arrested, suspended in the face of epiphany. The divine aura illuminates the heart of the initiate, and banishes the darkness.’

The Winged Victory of Samothrace – interpreted by Aliénor Massenet

The emotional power of the iconic statue – found in hundreds of pieces, she was put back together like a jigsaw – has been given life in olfactory form by Massenet’s rich harmony of tuberose, magnolia and jasmine, enhanced by the warmth of myrrh.

Buly say: ‘Blown by a gale scented with citrus, in the perilous rush of the straits, the white bouquet of the salt-encrusted drapery wraps around the victorious effigy. At her marble feet, the waves, the incantations, the roses, the ocean of History and all her conquests; at her feet, the foundered hearts of heroes.’

Nymph With the Scorpion – interpreted by Annick Ménardo

Somehow making marble seem as supple as the female form, Lorenzo Bartolini’s sculpture does what it says in the title – the naked nymph perhaps regretting not donning a pair of shoes and she reaches for her freshly bitten foot. And Ménardo’s enticing bouquet of heliotrope and jasmine also sizzles with amber and musk.

Buly say: ‘The bitter kiss of the sting of almond prickles on the naked skin massaged with amber. Like quicksilver, the venom floods the veins, arrests the maiden’s glance, frozen in marble. The heart clouds with toxins, like the bloom of algae in a clear pond.’

Grande Odalisque – interpreted by Domitille Michalon-Bertier

The licentious gaze of Inges courtesan is reflected in Bertier’s alluring trail of exotic incense and pink pepper enhanced with intensely musky notes, to represent the reach-out-and-touch me textural deliciousness of the sitter’s pale skin and the luxuriously delicate draperies.

Buly say: ‘The musky, chilly satin of a shoulder, the sinuous curve of a hip or breast, gleaming in an alcove chased with brass, an Orientalist’s shrine, a dream of Eastern Promise. The pink pepper of the cheeks pricks the heart and, beneath the silken scarf, a perfume of incense suffuses the hair.’

We were so sad not to be able to include this incredible Buly/Louvre collaboration in the Perfume & Culture edition of our magazine, The Scented Letter – the project didn’t launch until after it had been published. But it certainly shows our fingers are firmly on the pulse of this artistic fragrant revolution. Get a huge dose of glorious artistic interpretations of perfume through the ages – from cinematic scents, to actors using fragrance to fully ‘become’ the parts they play, and a jaw-dropping collection of perfume art flaçons recently auctioned in America (one of which graces the cover). Along with your regular scent shots of news, interviews and all the latest reviews, the 60-page print magazine is available to purchase here.

What a complete honour – and how overwhelmingly emotional – it was to walk the hallowed halls of the Louvre in such a private party, and to smell such wonderful evocations of the artforms. In Eau Triple formulation (milky, hydrating and skin-friendly water-based), each truly pays perfumed homage to the iconic artworks. It was an experience we will never forget, and which we urge you to take part in by visiting the Louvre, and trying the scents on your own skin having seen the magnificent pieces yourself.

The Buly 1803 shop will sell all eight fragrances at the Louvre for one year only, along with candles, scented soap sheets, and fragranced postcards for the most chic ‘wish you were here’. So if you’ve always meant to go there, or hanker after another look at the Louvre’s incredible collection, then now would be the perfect time for fragrance and art fans to pay them a visit…

L’Officiene Universelle Buly 1803 €150 for 200ml Eau Triple

By Suzy Nightingale

Our first sniff of Paris's Le Grand Musée du Parfum

First of all, let’s put hand on heart: this isn’t just one of the most exciting perfume experiences we’ve ever had. It’s one of the most exciting museum experiences we’ve ever enjoyed.
Le Grand Musée du Parfum opened in Paris just before Christmas 2016 – and last weekend, while in Paris smelling the Guerlain vintage archive, we got a first glimpse. (And sniff.) It’s sited on the spiffy Faubourg Saint-Honoré opposite one of the city’s priciest hotels, Le Bristol, in a ‘hotel particulier’ – a grand 19th Century mansion house with a courtyard, which has been modernised for the purpose of delighting the senses and educating visitors about the history of fragrance, ingredients, bottle design and more.
Once upon a time, the building was the home of the aristocrat Antoine-Marie Roederer (of Champagne fame), before being repurposed as the couture atelier of designer Christian Lacroix.
One look at the line-up of individuals who’ve been involved in bringing the project to fruition, and you can tell the place has instant cred. Key figures include Patricia de Nicolaï, head of the Versailles Osmothèque Museum, Sylvaine Delacorte (until recently Guerlain’s director of fragrance evaluation and development), Hermès in-house ‘nose’ Jean-Claude Ellena and Cartier’s Mathilde Laurent.
The tour begins down a spiral staircase in the basement. (First note to visitors: if you want to leave a coat or bag, which isn’t a bad idea because you’ll be here for some time, you need a two-euro piece for the lockers. I didn’t have one, and neither the staff of the museum nor the shop could help with change.)
In the vaulted cellar (where once upon a time Champagne was stored), you’ll first enter the ‘Seducer’s Gallery‘, which via pop art-esque illuminated panels showcases figures from history who deployed fragrance to beguile – from Cleopatra to Casanova, Marie Antoinette to Louis XIV, Catherine de Medici to Napoleon. (Pull back a curtain, press a button – and smell naughty scents from absinthe to ‘libertine boudoir’ via cannabis, as you progress through the room.)

On the right at the back is a room which traces perfume’s roots from ancient Egypt to more modern times, via artefacts including truly ancient perfume bottles, eau de Cologne bottles from the 19th Century, and a wonderful bronze statue of a 19th Century scent seller (above); if you’ve been to Grasse, you may have seen a life-sized version there.
Even more thrillingly for scent-seekers, there are what appear to be three large modern washbasins – but in fact, when you place your hand over the bowl and position your hand over the symbol on the pedastal they stand on, ancient smells mist up from the ‘plughole’. There’s kyphi – the ancient Egyptian incense. (Sweeter than I’d imagined the blend of saffron, sandalwood, benzoin, lemongrass and rose to be), along with more familiar  frankincense and myrrh. For as long as your hand rests on the ‘Press Here’ symbol beside the ‘basins’, the scent will be released. Remove it, and the smell disappears.

The third room on the ground floor explores the familiar links between fashion and fragrance, beginning with Paul Poiret and proceeding via Gabrielle Chanel and (new to me) Maurice Babani to Marcel Rochas, Schiaparelli and beyond. Brief biographies of the perfumers are accompanied by vintage bottles of the designer scents, while in the window opposite there are further vintage bottles to delight: Caron Nuit de Noël, Piver‘s Scarabée, Houbigant Mon Boudoir (long before Vivienne Westwood was a twinkle in anyone’s eye, NB), and many more. (See photo below.) There’s also a re-creation of a corner of Paris’s Houbigant perfumery, with antique artefacts.
Ascend the staircase (there’s also a lift) – and actually, I suggest leaving the entire ground floor till last. In fact I went straight up to the section on The Art of the Perfumer, where via large TV screens, renowned perfumers share stories of creation – including Mathilde Laurent, Jean-Christophe Hérault, Jean-Claude Ellena.

Again, high-tech dominates: a sort of ‘Newton’s cradle’ of electronic bronze orbs hangs from the ceiling. Pick up an orb, hold it to your ear – and if it’s not talking in your language, give it a little shake and an English explanation of a specific ingredient can be heard, at the same time as that precise smell is wafting out from a hole in the multi-tasking gadget. (I heard English and French; I couldn’t tell you if there are other languages programmed in there. But it’s hugely impressive, whatever.)
You’re then beckoned to step through a curtain into a sound and light installation – The Perfume Organ, by Jason Bruges – that you can watch below (resting feet which will no doubt be weary from treading Paris’s pavements, with their endlessly seductive window-shopportunities). The otherworldly music illuminates a perfumer’s organ via beams emitted from a ‘fragrance bottle’, in rhythm with the music. The Perfume Organ by Jason Bruges.

Down the staircase again and there’s a room focused on extraction and blending of ingredients – including a sprig of faux lily of the valley illustrating Headspace technology. This is the science of capturing and recreating the smells of flowers and plants – like muguet, in fact – which don’t release their fragrances through usual methods of extraction; Headspace technology belongs to IFF (who are part-sponsors of the museum).

 
The ‘The Garden of Scents’ offers a real ‘Alice in Wonderland’ moment: the giant white flowers can be sniffed, as you progress through the room, which is designed to whisk you nostalgically back to childhood. As you place your face into the flower and press a button (there is a LOT of button-pressing in Le Grand Musée du Parfum), it might waft the scent at towards you of Coca Cola, wood smoke, cinnamon…

Turn a corner and you’re back in an 18th Century Parisian salon, complete with grey velvet ‘love seat’ (below) – again, interactive: touch a screen to ‘send’ a smell to your friend, sitting the other side of the high-backed chair.

And so on, down to the Ground Floor – which is all about shopping, with possibly the most tantalising museum store any perfumista will ever have a shopping accident in. In a room featuring beautiful French windows all along one wall, commercially-available fragrances are available – from Aerin to Dear Rose via Thierry Mugler, Tom Ford, Cabochard, Jimmy Choo, Boucheron (hundreds, actually). You first smell them via small porcelain domes, and can then spritz your choices (generous quantities of blotters, too, I was pleased to see). All of these can be bought (and the stock’s sourced via a sort of robot who stock-picks from a glass-walled area along the side wall).

And oh, the shop itself. Every book about perfume you could possibly wish to read. Including mine. And let me confess that I became really quite emotional to find the one I’d co-written showcased there in a museum – right alongside Odette Toilette, Jo Malone and Chandler Burr – was really quite a pinch-me moment. Alongside just about every perfume book and publication on the planet, the museum offers little porcelain ‘Madeleines’ (a Proustian nod), to spritz with your favourite fragrances, games for children to improve their sense of smell.

I’ve a few comments which you may find useful. First of all, as of my recent visit, there was – quelle horreur! – no guidebook that you can take home to read more about the exhibits at your leisure. The only thing for it, I found, was to take dozens of pictures of the very clear explanations of all of the exhibits on my phone, for reference. Secondly, I went on a Saturday morning quite early, when it was pretty quiet. This is such a hugely interactive experience that when this museum gets crowded, there’s a risk of Disney-like queues for the copper scent-balls, the ‘washbasin’ fragrance misters, etc. Go early. Or go late (there’s a specific late night).
But go soon, I tell you – and you won’t be disappointed.
By Jo Fairley
Le Grand Musée du Parfum 73 rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, Paris 75008 (Metro Franklin Roosevelt/Champs Élysées-Clemenceau)
Open Tuesday to Sunday 10.30am to 7pm (late nights Friday till 10pm)/regular ticket price 14.50 euros
legrandmuseeduparfum.fr

Angelina Jolie: Guerlain Parfumeur – a new fragrant personification of iconic, female fortitude…

Since 1828, the French house of Guerlain has been synonymous with perfumes inspired by and created for strikingly strong women. As Jacques Guerlain himself once said: ‘We create perfumes for the women we admire.’ So who better to personify that independent, wilful yet utterly elegant spirit than Angelina Jolie, whom Guerlain have just announced as their personification of their new fragrance… Guerlain Parfumeur Mon Parfum.
Master Perfumer at Guerlain, Thierry Wasser, created Guerlain Parfumeur by drawing direct inspiration from Angelina Jolie, expressing the idea of ‘…the notes of a woman,’ and the embodiment of modern femininity within her choices, emotions and dreams.

Angelina Jolie [photo by Wall Street Journal]
First known as an actress, Jolie is now a filmaker in her own right while also serving as Special Envoy to the UN Refugee Agency, co-founder of the Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative and human rights activist, with many emotional and familial ties to France and the house of Guerlain itself. The deal was struck in 2015, with Jolie having long been a fan of Guerlain since childhood, with evocative scent memories of her mother’s love for a Guerlain powder. But Jolie also represents the continuation of a house that has ever pushed the boundaries while striving for modernity and perfectly executing a timeless, fearless femininity… Indeed, Jolie’s compassion is also at the fore, with her decision to donate her entire salary from the collaboration to charity.
guerlain-are-you-her-type-perfume-1920sThink of Guerlain’s most famous fragrances – scents that have stood the test of time and will likely outlive us all – and a powerful woman will be behind the inspiration for the perfume, somewhere. Such as the exuberantly mysterious Mitsouko from 1919. Composed by Jacques Guerlain the perfume was based on the novel ‘La bataille’ and the eponymous heroine and wife of a Japanese Admiral, caught in the web of a tangled love affair with a British officer. A masterful balance of the juicy peach and rounded oakmoss of the base, Mitsouko retains its ambiguous juxtaposition of alluring warmth and cool reserve – an echo of the story’s heroine who must control her raging emotions with dignity as she awaits news of which, if either, of her lovers will return from the war.
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If Mitsouko represents an attempted control of the vagaries of the human heart, then Shalimar gives free reign to overwhelming passion and devotion – a romance poem written in perfume and representing the legendary love of Emperor Shahjahan and his wife Mumtaz Mahal, meaning “Jewel of the Palace,” and also composed by Jacques Guerlain, in 1925. During their marriage the couple were inseparable, but having given birth to thirteen children, she died during the birth of their gourteenth. Devastated by her death, Shah Jahan had the Taj Mahal built in memory of his wife and their undying love; and Shalimar is named after ‘The Gardens of Shalimar,’ her favourite place. One of the best-selling perfumes in the world to this day, Shalimar seamlessly weaves citrus freshness in to a beguiling floral heart garlanded by gauzy jasmine and may rose, with a charismatic dry down that wavers between the warmth of opoponax, tonka bean and vanilla, and a misty coolness of iris and ambergris.
These scented stories are merely two of the redolent, towering and immediately evocative fragrances in their rich tapestry – and with Jolie at the helm of their forthcoming fragrance – due for release in March 2017 – for Guerlain, the future is definitely a continued celebration of female strength…
Written by Suzy Nightingale

Poésy in motion: behind the scenes with Clémence for the new Chloe ad

Now marks the nationwide launch of Chloé Love Story, which sets out to capture romance in Paris: eyes locking across the crowd, running across the cobbles of the Parisian streets, flying through the air on a fairground carousel.

The ad for the fragrance stars Clémence Poésy, who we’ll admit to a bit of a girl crush on since she appeared in Birdsong with Eddie ‘Theory of Everything Oscar Nomination’ Redmayne.

In the ad, she floats through Paris in a sheer chiffon dress, making us all fall a little bit more in love with the City. (Actually, it makes us want to go straight out and book a Eurostar.

And now see the ad – and read more about the fragrance – here

It’s all about the individual: Ex Nihilo, Paris

Name to watch: Ex Nihilo. Slightly unpronounceable, yes. And what does it mean? ‘Creation out of nothing’. (Latin, it turns out.)

Not quite the case here, of course: Ex Nihilo has conjured up some exquisite fragrances out of ingredients which are much more than nothing – including oudh, tuberose, gardenia, etc.
Their concept is fragrance with a ‘personal touch’ and it is. Below you can see the extremely high-tech machine which custom-blends fragrances for clients. There are some really fabulous ‘ready-made’ fragrances: Rose Hubris (a seriously full-on rose), Fleur Narcotique (lots of tuberose), smoky, earthy Vetiver Moloko and more.

But what’s unique is the opportunity to ‘personalise’ them, with additions of individual notes, then blended right before your very eyes with the super-high-tech ‘Osmologue’ machine. So if you want the vetiver ramped up (we almost always do), they make it happen. You can then take that personalisation one stage further: choose a bottle cap made of leather, glass, onyx, pearl – and have it laser-engraved, too.

Ex Nihilo’s founders, Sylvie Loday, Olivier Royère and Benoît Verdier worked to put together an experience which is really sensorial, tapping into the emotions in the way nothing does quite like scent.

And they’re friendly (um, not always the case in Paris…?) so the experience isn’t scary at all – just a joy for the senses.

Though even we haven’t dared step upstairs yet, for a more personalised consultation in the private ‘sensorial boudoir’.

On our next visit to Paris, maybe. After a glass or two of chilled Sancerre.

Ex Nihilo, 352 Rue Saint-Honoré, Paris 73001
+331 40 15 93 77
www.ex-nihilo-paris.com