Sun. May 19th, 2024

Beyond its beautiful architecture, impeccable fashion and infectious romance, the City of Lights has also been the home to old perfume houses that have been around for hundreds of years. Apart from the usual big names we are so familiar with, like Chanel and Dior, Paris also has a rich history in perfumery, which makes it appealing to industry experts and discerning fans. From storied fragrance houses like Guerlain to small, niche brands like Ex Nihilo and everything in between, here are the best perfume stores in Paris you have to check out when visiting Paris.

Founded in 1828, Guerlain is one of the oldest beauty brands in the world. And over the years, it is inevitable that the brand has amassed an extensive library of scents in its archives. To fully experience the Guerlain brand, where better than its flagship store on Avenue des Champs-Élysées? Having been at this current location since 1914, Guerlain has quickly become synonymous with this prestigious shopping belt. Once you enter the store, be prepared to get instantly transported to the world of Guerlain, as it stocks everything you can dream of: Perfumes, skincare, makeup, the luxurious L’Institut Guerlain spa and even a restaurant. Here, you also get access to special services like engraving, and if you have over 20,000 euros to spare, a fully personalised Guerlain scent that will be custom-made to your preference.

Fans of niche fragrances will love the Jovoy store at Rue de Castiglione. Housing dozens of fine fragrance brands from all over the world, including Jovoy Paris, Fragrance du Bois and Roja Perfumes, this is the place where fragrance connoisseurs come to have their ultimate dream come true. From fragrances, home scents to room scents, there’s literally nothing you cannot find here. Take your time to browse through the extensive offerings or speak to the extremely knowledgeable boutique assistants about your preferences so they can make their recommendations. Just don’t forget your credit card!

Related article: 19 Amazing Niche Fragrance Houses That You’ve Never Heard Of

With perfume names like “Good Girl Gone Bad” and “Forbidden Games”, you can expect nothing less than rich, hedonistic scents that will leave a memorable trail at By Kilian. Conveniently situated just doors from the Chanel store, there’s no excuse why you can’t drop by for a sniff or two. Modelled like an elegant apartment, feel free to browse through the scents on display—most of them come in exquisite cases or clutches, which makes it even harder to resist picking up something for yourself. We love “Voulez-vous coucher avec moi”, an uninhibited explosion of heady notes like gardenia, ylang-ylang, tuberose, sandalwood and vanilla.

Just as its name suggests, Nose Boutique is definitely one of the must-visits in Paris if you call yourself a fragrance fan. Stocking under-the-radar brands from all over the world like Floris, Pierre Guillaume and Keiko Mecheri, it is one of the best places to discover new niche fragrance brands you’ve never even heard of. Set aside at least a couple of hours if you don’t want to rush through the scents as the array available here is nothing short of impressive. Plus, you probably won’t find someone else who will be wearing the same scent as you back home! And don’t forget to check out the expertly curated selection of skincare brands as well.

Related article: Meet The Founder Of The Most Controversial Fragrance House Ever

Sure you can get your fill on Diptyque’s offerings here at home, but there’s nothing quite like visiting the brand’s famed flagship store in the hip Saint Germain neighbourhood. Located at 34 Boulevard Saint-Germain—there’s even a scent that pays homage to the iconic space—it is the best spot to discover the full range of Diptyque products. Since the brand’s founders were a painter, theatre director and set designer respectively, it’s easy to see elements of art, design and sculpture in the decoration of the store as an homage to the founders. You definitely won’t leave empty-handed!

Combining French refinement with an avant garde spirit, this young fragrance brand aims to rewrite a new code of luxury by combining technical perfumery expertise with the best precious raw materials available, like May Rose from Grasse to Bourbon Vanilla from Madagascar. In addition, the brand places great emphasis on collaborations with fellow creatives, be it from the field of architecture or design, to encourage a constant dialogue of ideas, discoveries and inspirations. We love Midnight Special, an opulent blend of black pepper, saffron, Turkish rose, agarwood, patchouli and vanilla that’s perfect for sultry nights and after-dark engagements in the French capital. Alternatively, you can request to personalise any existing scents, by highlighting a specific facet. You can even select how the bottle is adorned, be it embellished with precious stones or even 24-karat gold and diamonds.

Born into a French family of perfume specialists, his grandfather founded Parfums Christian Dior before handing it over to Frederic’s mother. As the third generation of perfume experts in his family, Frederic Malle has trained at Roure Bertrand Dupont, a prestigious perfume laboratory, where he acquired in-depth knowledge of prized raw materials and olfactory balance. He also made the acquaintance of the top perfumers in the industry, whom he works with to create exquisite olfactory formulas under his own luxury fragrance brand, Editions de Parfum Frederic Malle. You’ll feel like you’re walking into the Parisian apartment of someone glamorous from the moment you enter the boutique. The layout makes it extremely inviting for fragrance sampling, so you can discover your favourite. We love Carnal Flower, which is concocted by Dominique Ropion. This intoxicating mix first reveals innocence with its fruity fresh top notes before voluptuous accents of tuberose and musk are revealed for a lustful magnetism that you just can’t get enough of.

Since it opened in 1992, fans of Serge Lutens’ fragrances have flocked to it to experience the vision of its founder in its totality. Strategically located amongst the shopping arcade of the Palais Royal, it is nestled between antique, vintage and art shops. All decked out in lavish hues of purple and black, this space is almost reminiscent of an oriental temple of sorts, and it is not only magical for fragrance fans, it’s also sheer fantasy for art and interior fans. You can discover the brand’s full range of product offerings, including the Section D’Or and even boutique exclusives you can’t find anywhere else in the world. If you feel like pampering yourself, pick up the Veilleur De Nuit Eau de Parfum. At just under $1,000 for 50ml, this exquisite blend is the culmination of rare and precious ingredients like tuberose, castoreum, musk and a touch of dark chocolate for a scent that’s sure to be unforgettable.

Related article: Exploring The 5 Senses With Master Perfumer, Serge Lutens


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