Chanel's new Les Eaux will take you on an olfactory journey

Chanel's new Les Eaux will take you on an olfactory journey

Next stop, Wonderland

Text: Renée Batchelor

Chanel's newest fragrance offering will take you on olfactory adventure through Europe

The names Chanel and fragrance are almost synonymous with one another. Though they are known as a fashion house and creator of the iconic 2.55 bag, the house has always had a strong fragrance heritage, starting with the first scent, Chanel No. 5, that was created by Ernest Beaux in 1919, and that continues with each new launch. This time round, the brand has decided to create a small collection of travel-inspired scents, in a concept slightly reminiscent of niche fragrance house Memo. 

This collection of destination-inspired scents is called the Les Eaux de Chanel, and tries to capture the olfactory essence of holiday getaways. Forget the usual fruity-florals, these scents are meant to plunge you into unfamiliar territory with remarkable, interesting juices that still promise a lasting freshness when worn on the skin. Themed around the idea of escape, think of them as the scent equivalent of dropping all your work and fleeing to the countryside. 
Les Eaux de Chanel Paris-Venise
Everything is ripe for interpretation, from unique sounds, to images, to memories. The first three scents are centred around Deauville, Biarritz and Venice, but even then it's all about the dream of the destination, rather than the place itself. Says perfumer Olivier Polge, "More than the actual reality of the destination, I liked the idea urbanites make of it when they dream of a weekend away in the country. I wasn't striving to capture the Normandy countryside as it stands today, but rather the promise of a stroll through the tall grasses." Paris-Deauville is a biting, green scent, with the energy of orange rind and basil leaf, while Paris-Venise captures the sumptuousness of the Orient with a cottony twist. “The creation of Eau de Chanel Paris-Venise draws inspiration as much from the long journey on the Orient Express from the French capital to the Italian city, as from the destination itself,” explains Polge. “I wanted people to smell that gateway to the Orient, which, at Chanel, is also an evocation of the baroque. It is probably the most urban Eau of the three.”

Meanwhile, Paris-Biarritz, captures an aquatic sensibility. Says Polge, “I wanted to create a sensation on the skin as if each ingredient were soaked with water.” In chic, unadorned flacons, these unique, olfactory snapshots will bring you this sense of escape and the promise of a getaway with just one spritz. No passport required.

$215 each. At Chanel fragrance boutiques from 1 June

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