Guerlain are launching a new exclusive trio of perfumes in the Les Collections Exclusives range called Les Déserts d'Orient, which are inspired by the Orient in a similar manner that Shalimar in 1925 was attempting to capture a dream of the East. For the house, it is part of their classic sensualist and Orientalist approach...
But this attraction for the Orient takes on a new cast as it now also belongs to the more recent movement of Western perfumery creation wishing to adapt to the tastes of the Middle East.
Rose Nacrée du Désert (Pearly Rose of the Desert*), Encens Mythique d'Orient (Mythical Incense of the Orient*) and Songe d'Un Bois d'Eté (Dream of a Summer Wood*) will be exclusive to the Guerlain boutiques in France but are also special creations for the Middle East.
"This perfumed trilogy is a first reserved for the Oriental world..."
All three compositions are signed by perfumer Thierry Wasser, the in-house nose, who each time put the accent on a specific material chosen for its quality and rarity. Wasser since his enthronement has doned on Jean-Paul Guerlain's Wellingtons to travel the world making it his mission to source exceptional perfumery ingredients as this is one of the competitive advantages that luxury niche perfumery can offer. In fact, if they didn't do it at that level, one wonders who would.
For Guerlain, the Orient also stands as the craddle of perfumery. There is therefore a sense of deep tradition and a going-back to the origins of an ancient art thanks to the showcasing of highly symbolic ingredients.
Rose Nacrée du Désert is a woody floral. It is a delicate composition evoking the morning dew on a rose. The perfumer selected a "magnificent Persian rose". Oud, saffron and spices commingle with rose.
Encens Mythique d'Orient is an Oriental musk. It includes amber gris from New Zealand which imparts an exceptional softness and depth to the composition. The incense is airy; there is in here "a passionate rose unsettled by aldehydes"; the woody facet rests in part on patchouli; there is saffron; an "exceptional musk" signs off the fragrance.
Songe d'Un Bois d'Eté is a leather perfume. It is also "a modern interpretation of the idea of exoticism". It offers a masculine character. The composition features notes of cedar wood, patchouli, myrrh, flowers. "It is the perfect synthesis of the taste for spices, woods and their resin".
The Orient has been a constant source of dreams for the Western imagination. Now perfumery is "giving back" to a region seen in slightly more realistic terms, and certainly, in less egocentric ones.
Via press release
* Editor"s translations, not the brand's.