Monday’s normally mean a “Scent of the Week” post, but today I am going to do something a little different. I want to share with you my Penhaligon’s experience in Singapore! Form mid October to the beginning of November, I took a holiday and enjoyed a week in Khao Lak Thailand, Bali Indonesia and I ended my travels in Singapore for some fun in the city and retail therapy. If you have ever been to Singapore, then you know that it is a mecca for shoppers and retailers. I have never seen so many shops, boutiques and department stores packed onto one street – Orchard Road. Luckily, I had a plan. I mapped out all the must-see shops and malls and set off on my retail adventure…
One must visit mall on my list was the ION Orchard, a retail and residential development that houses 335 food and retail outlets across eight floors. It has 941,700 square feet of gross floor area and 663,000 square feet of retail space! Huge, but surprisingly not the biggest mall in Singapore.
It took me four hours to navigate six out of the eight retail floors, and just as I thought I was lost, I saw a familiar sight. I love that feeling of comfort – to see a brand that you know well on your side of the globe, but in a foreign land. This usually happens for me with Starbucks (not so interesting), so you can imagine my delight when I saw the iconic Penhaligon’s London store front. I stepped inside and felt like I was home.
I was greeted by one of the two lovely staff in the boutique that day – Dex Chia. I introduced myself and described our boutique in Montreal and the fragrances we sell. We swapped many fragrant favourites and Dex and his colleague Joy introduced me to some scents that I had never smelled before. The Trade Routes Collection is quite new from Penhaligon’s and although I had a chance to smell these three scents (Empressa, Lothair and Levantium) at FRAGRANZE in Florence this past September, a second reintroduction was necessary.
Dex walked me through all three and I was immediately taken by Empressa. The same feeling came across me when I got my first whiff of Artemesia – Perfection! What I love about Empressa is its delicateness. Usually, I find that I get a strong and sometimes overpowering blast of alcohol at the first spritz, but not with Empressa. Instead I experienced a gentle breeze of sweet blood orange and bergamot sprinkled with peach, rose and pepper. Dex told me that the drydown was particularly beautiful with this one and I could tell already that he was right on.
As I moved throughout the store sniffing old favourites – Artemisia for comparison, Quercus, Bluebell, Tralala and Sartorial, I kept coming back to the Empressa that was now fully developing on my inner elbow. I couldn’t put my finger on what the smell reminded me of, but it was similar to L’Artisan Parfumeur’s DZING! Then Dex said “Doesn’t it smell like cotton candy?”. YES! That was it! Mystery solved! Dex was right, the drydown of Empressa was lovely, although very faint. A pale fruity – sweet – spicy scent with a short life. It lasted about three hours on my skin. You know what they say, “all good things must come to an end”, BUT what we can do is make them last longer. Joy gave me a great fragrant tip: give a lighter fragrance a boost with complimentary Bath & Body products such as Artemisia, Quercus or Vanities (her go-to complimentary layering lotion for any floral fragrance). Figure out the notes of the fragrance you would like to boost and find a shower gel, bath oil or lotion with similar or same notes. In some cases, your fragrance will have complimentary Bath & Body products. Why not give your favourite fragrance a boost and increase its projection and longevity?
The Etiket Insider Beauty Editor
Thank you Joy and Dex for a lovely visit! If you are in Singapore and want to go on a little fragrant adventure, visit the Penhaligon’s London Boutique at ION Orchard #03-16 or The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands. Here are some more photos from my visit to Penhaligon’s London in Singapore: