Acqua di Parma enters unusual territory in the world of fragrances with its new genderless Eau de Cologne Colonia CLUB. Unlike most fragrances, which are inspired by a concrete idea – a place, a time or even a person – the thinking behind this olfactory invention is altogether more meta and focuses on a sense of community and togetherness. It’s a rare feat in perfumery considering that scent is already an adventure in synesthesia, drawing on different sensory experiences, from sight to hearing to taste, with all sorts of feelings released along the way will. Perhaps the late French fashion designer Sonia Rykiel put it best when she observed, “Perfume is like a bracket, a moment of freedom, peace, love and sensuality amidst the disruptions of modern life.”
Colonia CLUB – an acronym for “Community, Life, Unique, Bond” – takes this a step further by starting from a slightly more open space in the imagination, with a brief build up of connection, warmth and kinship. So how do such things smell, according to the famous Italian perfumer? Strong notes of lemon and bergamot (a staple of Acqua di Parma) lead with their citrus aroma, which is reminiscent of mild summer days in the Mediterranean region. These ‘staging’ background notes would be a bit lonely on their own, conjuring up the idea of a warm, lively vibe thanks to the spiciness of pink berries and black pepper, and the freshness of minty shiso and fragrant rosemary. Hints of musk and cedarwood, both known for their deep and rich layers of fragrance that somehow tie lighter notes together – hence the final ‘bond’, as the name suggests, keeps things balanced.
Presented in a handsome green cylindrical bottle – made partly from recycled glass and with a lid made from recycled plastic – this new CLUB addition to the Acqua di Parma family shows a more philosophical approach to an art form that eventually stretched back as far as Egyptian times, when Perfume was considered the link between man and the gods. As we hopefully head towards a post-pandemic world, the idea of a fragrance based on the concept of collaboration and solidarity between communities is undeniably optimistic and uplifting.
£98.60 (100ml) exclusively for John Lewis
https://www.theweek.co.uk/arts-life/fashion-jewellery/956160/acqua-di-parma-a-new-perfume-built-on-connectivity Acqua di Parma: a new perfume based on connectivity