The Cologne Absolue is one of your iconic scents. Please could you tell us a little bit about it?
With the Cologne Absolue we wanted to invent a scent which redefined what cologne means to the contemporary world. Interestingly, we never wanted to call our perfume ‘Eau de Cologne’ because its not technically an ‘eau de cologne’. The Eau de Cologne is traditionally perceived as a low concentration perfume. And we always wanted to create high concentrated perfume, high concentration in oil, to ensure the longevity of course, but as well to ensure that the scent had personality. We always wanted to create cologne with a lot of personality, not something fresh and light, which is good, but not enough.
And so The Cologne Absolue is always a combination of a citrus and several other heavy ingredients. So if you take Orange Sanguine or something similar, it's bitter orange, blood orange together with woody notes and geranium. And when you smell it the first time you feel it smells just like the fruit. But then on the skin, once it dries, it changes again. It lasts all day.
You put a lot of thought into your ingredients…
Absolutely, natural ingredients have been a key part of vision since the beginning. For us natural ingredients are the most beautiful ingredients on the skin. Our opinion is that you can always smell the difference between a natural and a synthetic ingredient. It doesn't mean that we have 100% natural ingredients because, for example, if you want to have musk notes, it's not possible to have natural ingredients. So we use 85% to 95% of natural ingredients and that's our style. That's what our customers like as well. And so that's absolutely important for us.
Where can perfume fans find your boutiques?
We know that for customers here in Dubai expect the full Atelier Cologne service and you can only find that in one of our boutiques. We now have 30 boutiques in the world, in the main cities Paris, New York, London, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Toronto, and now Dubai, so I'm very happy.
I'm really happy we are here in Dubai, it's a city where there is a real passion for perfume. So I was really very impatient to have our boutique here, and it's great.
Do you have any specific scents for the GCC market?
We never created specific perfumes for specific regions. We don't believe in that. We're more inspired by different experiences, places we travel to, and different people we meet. We integrate all of that into our creations. So we know today that the most interesting cologne for the GCC market are built around sandalwood and rose. We have a great scent named Rose Anonyme. It's a fun story about a woman stealing diamonds and in the end she's falling in love with a secret agent. So behind each scent there is actually a story we have created.
We also have a populd oud scent, called Oud Saphir, which is our oud creation. It's absolutely different from other oud scents that you can get here. And, but this is what we do. We take ingredients, we create a unique twist on them, we make them become a cologne.
Regarding the story behind each cologne. Can you tell us about the Vanille Insensée perfume?
So Vanille Insensée is a scent we created in 2011. Right when my wife and co-founder Sylvie was pregnant with our daughter, Innes. We decided that Innes should be born in Paris, so we left New York and we decided to create a scent really dedicated to New York City with this idea of a lot of, let's say metallic. Something metallic in the scent, but as well as something warm, a celebration of our time there.
The scent is a homage to New York. It's a very lively city, a lot of things happening. But all the people that went to live there say that in a few days. They feel part of the city, they feel at home in New York. So the vanilla is giving you this feeling of being home. But the jasmin, the oakmont and the lime give it metallic side notes that makes it very modern.
And the story is about a man going in a bar and actually smelling a perfume that he knows. And after a few minutes you realize that it's a perfume that he stopped wearing many years ago because he was with a woman that left him and they were sharing the perfume. So he stopped using it because it was making him so sad. And when he realizes that actually, the woman is here and she's still wearing the scent.
Please can you tell us a little bit more about what people will experience in your boutique here in Dubai?
So it's really a tailor made consultation that we do. We invite all perfume lovers to come and visit us. We call our specialists in our boutiques ‘perfume artists’ because we believe that not only the creation of a perfume is an art, but that consultation is an art too. You really need to listen a lot to the person and try and find something that defines them. In terms of olfactive notes, what is the personality and the style of the person? And that's a very interesting process.
For more information, visit ateliercologne.com