Happy Chinese New Year! Welcoming in the Year of the Horse is a quiet celebration this year in our family.
Being a global nomad since birth I was lucky to find a global nomad soul mate. As fate would have it we grew up as third culture children and we therefore feel at home with everyone and everywhere. Our niece and nephew are growing up as third culture kids as well and are currently living in Beijing. Hearing about their celebrations to ring in the new year in Beijing and keeping the customs I picked up from my 15 years working in an NGO, we usually celebrate with a lavish Chinese dinner but this year we are keeping our Chinese New Year simple.
Customarily I like to choose perfumes for special occasions throughout the year. Truth be told, I was more concerned with getting the house ready and buying the red envelope to fill with money than with choosing a perfume this weekend.
So when push came to shove I looked to one of my favorite perfume houses for inspiration. Remembering that Guerlain created a new perfume in celebration led me to seek out my sample for my celebratory weekend.
The Guerlain boutique on the Champs d’Elysees underwent a major renovation in 2013 and for its completion Thierry Wasser reinterpreted the classic Cologne du 68. He gives us Le Parfum du 68 which is available in an Eau de Parfum as well as an exclusive extrait version in a gorgeous black Baccarat bottle.
The Guerlain website describes Le Parfum du 68 as follows:
“The scent, floral and woody, plays off the contrast between warm and cool spices and harmoniously blends everlasting flower and rose in a unique floral duet. A bouquet of heliotrope and benzoin envelops the fragrance, leaving behind a trail that is irresistibly Guerlain.”
According to Fragrantica the notes are “spicy notes, immortelle, tonka bean, benzoin, incense and leather.”
Le Parfum du 68 opens up with a wonderful floral citrus composition which quite quickly moves into what I describe as a cologne vibe. This is not at all a bracing citrus but one tempered with immortelle and tonka bean. Ever so slowly the perfume morphs into a beautiful woody, incense-infused leather perfume.
What is so fascinating about this perfume is that if I hold my nose right up to my arm I get the cologne vibe throughout its development. But if I sit back and inhale the perfume it is as if I am sitting by a crackling fire on a leather couch. The tonka bean is there but it is not a sweet tonka bean. In fact, this perfume is nowhere near the vicinity of being a sweet perfume. This is a warm, woody, leathery perfume.
This is a beautiful addition to the Guerlain repertoire and I am so pleased that Monsieur Wasser decided to expand on Cologne du 68. It is a classic in its own right and is in my opinion completely unisex. I can imagine that this would be stellar on a man.
Le Parfum du 68 was a perfect addition to my Chinese New Year.