Insider's Guide to Spas
Hermes/Le Parfum de la Maison

Spa Gifts

The Scent of Luxury: Aromatherapy from Hermes

Rima Suqi


If aromatherapy can be defined as “the use of scent to enhance a feeling of well-being,” then Hermes is now officially in the aromatherapy business. The age-old French luxury brand introduced “Le Parfum de la Maison” last month at a spectacularly staged event in a New York City townhouse, where each room represented a different scent, with a scene—based on the creator’s dreams—to match.

The scents were developed by Céline Ellena, daughter of Hermes’ master perfumer Jean-Claude Ellena, and when she spoke about them, she described them as “whispers” meant to accent, not compete with, a home’s natural smell. She created them while staying in a small house in the south of France. “The house gave me an exceptional gift,” she recalled. “I realized it was talking to me. The noises, the breathing of the house, allows you to start daydreaming. This is what happened. What if the perfumes of the house are small noises we listen to, not with our ears but our nose?”

The scents were developed by Céline Ellena, daughter of Hermes’ master perfumer Jean-Claude Ellena, and when she spoke about them, she described them as “whispers” meant to accent, not compete with, a home’s natural smell.

There are five aromas, each represented by a different color, and each with a backstory, which was presented at the event as a poem. They are:

Des Pas Sur La Neige (Steps on the Snow), Temps de Pluie (Time of the Rain), Fenetre Ouverte (Open Window), Champ Libre (Open Field) and A Cheval! (Horse). Guillaume Bardet, a French industrial designer, created the objects that would deliver the scents: a perfumed ceramic pebble, three sizes of candle “bowls” made of Limoges porcelain, and a set of four perfumed origami horses, made of paper. The bonus: all of these products are packaged in the brand’s iconic orange boxes, providing a little eye candy to accompany the aromatherapy.

Prices range from $100 to $450, hermes.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rima Suqi

Rima Suqi

An avid world traveler raised in an international home, Rima has explored and covered emerging destinations in the Middle East and Africa, far-flung luxury resorts in French Polynesia, as well as those closer to home, and the burgeoning arts scene in Marfa, Texas. Rima has traveled to over 30 countries, writing about the trends and tastemakers for leading travel and lifestyle publications, and subjected herself to innumerable spa treatments — sometimes under very odd circumstances — all in the name of journalism. A weekly contributor to The New York Times Home section, Rima held the envious position of Best Bets Editor at New York Magazine for six years, and is regularly published in national magazines including T Magazine/The New York Times, Departures, Architectural Digest, Elle Décor and American Way. Her last book American Fashion: Designers at Home (Assouline) in partnership with CFDA, sold out three printings.