Van Cleef & Arpels Collection Extraordinaire – Orchidée Vanille is my first fragrance from the house. Van Cleef & Arpels, the world-renowned Paris jeweler, pays tribute to nature with a range of magnificent fragrant compositions inspired by its LesJardins (“The Gardens”) jewelry range. The extraordinary collection has seven rare and luxurious fragrances from the house. The bottles are a mix of simplicity and classicism, with the high-end refinement of the details in relation to the Van Cleef & Arpels jewelry codes. Each perfume is given a formulation number by the master perfumer and presented in a hallmarked and embossed presentation gift box. One of the seven fragrances from the extraordinary collection is the Orchidée Vanille which I will be writing about in this post. The nose behind Van Cleef & Arpels Collection Extraordinaire – Orchidée Vanille is Randa Hammami.
The key words to describe this fragrance are Gourmand, Warm, Sensual, Comforting, and Spellbinding. Van Cleef & Arpels Collection Extraordinaire – Orchidée Vanille is described as a floral, gourmand vanilla with a subtle blend of fruity (Mandarin, litchi), tasty(Bitter almond, Chocolate), and sensual floral (Bulgarian rose, Violet) notes. With an intensely addictive vanilla pod, the raw nature of Vanilla Absolute is faceted with woody (cedar), balsamic (Tonka bean), and musky notes.
From Randa Hammami, the perfumer for Orchidée Vanille, ‘This fragrance unveils a fresh, sensual interpretation evoking a heady, unique oriental voyage. A mysterious flower of legendary beauty, I wanted to translate all the facets of the Orchid. Following the fresh and fruity opening provided by Mandarin and Litchi, I wanted to surround the middle note with floral and sensual accords (Violet, Bulgarian Rose). The bottom note of Virginia Cedar Wood is enveloped in Vanilla Absolute and adorned with balsamic and musky flourishes.'
Orchidée Vanille is very comforting and relaxing scent to me, not very sweet or sugary gourmand, more like a ladylike sweetness. On my skin, it opens fresh and after few minutes, the vanilla turns on. The chocolate and the bitter notes are subtle on my skin but still noticeable. It is very soft, creamy, and sensual, more of a light airy romantic fragrance. It is amazing to wear work and is not very loud, it is elegant, effortless, and classic. All the notes blend in very delicately and in balance to make it a really divine vanilla scent. All I get from is the natural notes and not any synthetic or chemically smell, which is really a nice thing for a vanilla based fragrance. The lasting power on my skin is around 8 hours on the day when the weather was sunny after which it starts fading which is okay for me. During the cold day, it lasted for around 5-6 hours on me. So the skin chemistry and the external factors, for me, do play a big role in how the fragrance projects on you and how much the longevity of it is.
I am happy to say that this is one of my favorite vanilla fragrances I have ever smelled, more of a vanilla cocoa gourmand. Van Cleef & Arpels Collection Extraordinaire – Orchidée Vanille is available at Hudson's Bay, and Neiman Marcus.