Urban Scents


When you have an aviatic enthusiast at home, you just need to see a hint of a propeller and you know where you are. But seeing the propeller on the perfume bottle is quite unexpected. Not that aerial inspiration is something rare in the perfume world (for example, Guerlain’s Vol de Nuit, Caron’s En Avion, Sisley’s Eau d’Ikar, Cartier L’Envol, Joop! Nightflight, or – my apologies to the more sensitive readers – even Man & Airplane from Manufaktura), but this is the first time I see the whole brand brand on it.

Well, in our home we usually divide hobbies, Marie Urban – Le Febvre snapped us both right away. She was brought to the perfume world in her childhood by a known perfumist, who gave her a perfume kit and recommended that she keep an olfactory diary and her flights are an inspiration for her perfumes. Her perfumes are produced in Grasse in a small business founded by late Edmond Roudnitska.

Aviation has been in her family since ever, Marie proved herself as a writer too, she described an interesting part of the history of her family during the World War II in “Risking and Resisting: Discovering the Untold Story of My Family’s Fight for Freedom in World War II.”

As an art lover, it provides publicity to many artists and organizes exhibitions of paintings, drawings or photography and invites them to collaborate on selected perfumes.

The brand name itself is a word play. On the one hand, it includes the common surname of the Urbans – Marie Urban – Le Febvre & Alexander Urban, who together run the company as a family business, and at the same time it evokes the atmosphere of the city of Berlin, where they live and create beside their scents also all that artsy-olfactory-urban buzz characteristic for the brand.

Well, what about the scents? The perfume shop Le Parfum & Le Chic here in Bratislava provided me samples of seven, so here are my observations:

Desert Rose

Ginger with a pinch of pepper, I’d guess a little bergamot. Then rose, not unlike Tauer in Rose Flash, but less striking (and here I leave the kind reader to remember the uncompromising power of the aforementioned to make her/his own opinion whether it is good or bad …).

The rose is somehow there. It just is … it is distinctive, neutral, is the pillar of the whole scent, but in such an easily scientifically distant way, almost as if whe was watching me, making notes in her mind.

It is listed as unisex, and when I thought about it, I realized that I couldn’t think of it in any sense of sex. It is definitely wearable regardless of gender, but only by someone who can raise eyebrows and show her and her notepad nicely where their place is.

Sensual Blend

Men’s classic, leather armchair and whiskey cup. Well, more whiskey than leather, but even the leather is echoing. It doesn’t evolve very much, it reminds me stylishly of Established Cognac by Krigler, but it’s more straightforward and, of course, there’s the difference in the alcohol tone used.

Dark Vanilla

Vanilla with spices and a little bit of rum, but very quickly loses its gourmet. For a moment, it is rolled over for a moment with a tone of lacquered wood and bituminous benzoin, then both tame a little, blend in with vanilla and heliotrope to create an interesting, ligtly sweet, vanilla-wood-powdered, non-edible, yet joifully smellable aroma. And even though it sounds incredible, it can be worn by gentlemen. It feels so calming to me.

Gunpowder Cologne

Well, by that name, one would expect at least a B-52 and it is nothing like that … and it’s good that way. I was expecting some dusty-metal-cold-modern-molecular tones after spraying and what came… was Gunpowder tea !!!

The tea, which apparently came to its unusual name due to a clerical mistake – its leaves are while still fresh wrapped by hand into small balls and then dried – has a rather strong and green taste. And that is really well expressed here. So what is in the bottle is a very pleasant, rather stronger, but not exaggerated, scent of green tea with a tiny bergamot trace and an even smaller hint of lavender.

Relaxing, soothing and vibrant as a beautiful summer day. Dresscode – sandshoes and airy white shirt.

Vetiver Reunion

The name refers to the place of origin of the raw material – the island of Reunion – where one of the finest vetivers is grown, it is not suppost to remind you of an alumni reunion of the well-known ingredients.

So what is the Reunion Vetiver like?

The smell is initially green, straight flesh chewed. Later – probably under the influence of the tropical sun begins to dry, get vetivery, dark green and gain the typical earthy tone… well, it is vetiver, so. There is also a little musk in drydowne.

Nice scent that doesn’t play anything. Just once vetiver, allways vetiver. To me explicitly men’s.

Singular Oud

The name probably wants to imply that the oud will be here only in the singular. And I think it’s good. Very relaxing scent. It consists primarily of juicy green, but not sharp fig tones, smooth wood and a little musk. And this foundation is very accurately spiced up with that little bit of oud, a pinch of incense, and maybe two pinches of saffron. The fragrance looks uniform, smooth, of high quality, giving the impression of unobtrusive elegance. And every time it comes as a little surprise.

Lost Paradise

Peculiar smell.

Peculiar mixture.

Transparent flowers, moss with a little clay, innocence of spring, something sweet, something dense, somewhat windy… I get the idea of the old-fashioned black licorice. Carefree but unusual, strange, different. Did the forbidden fruit tasted sweet and licory? It gradually fades, it only remains the wind tone along with slightly dusty, cool, almost metal tones. The smell of night emptiness. A truly lost paradise, the expulsion from Eden, if we turned, we might have seen a sword of fire blazing in the gloom. There is no return.

In conclusion, it is an interesting brand. The fragrances are of good quality, quite diverse, they definitely yield quality. And they build on an atmosphere that one would really like to experience, whether it’s artistic performances or flying into the unknown…

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