I am writing this blog post from a very sunny South of France, the Côte d’Azur to be precise.. I am staying here for the next two weeks, and I am very excited for this holiday! I’ve visited this place already 3 times when I was a little younger, together with my parents, but now I have the chance to show all these lovely places to my boyfriend!
I have arrived Saturday morning after a long night trip all the way from Amsterdam to France by car, a trip of almost 14 hours! But to be here is worth such a long trip and I must say bringing your own car is also very convenient, since you can bring a lot of stuff! (And hopefully take some more stuff with me on the way back…)
Our petit maison is located on a hill with sea side included. It is very piece full and just beautiful to relax and enjoy the French way of life! But there are also so many things to do, so no time in wasting to much chill time.
Yesterday we started with our first activity, a visit to the city of Pefume, called Grasse. It is this place where Coco Chanel developed the famous fragrance of Chanel no 5, back in the early nineties, and still remains one of the best bought fragrance in the world. In Grasse you can visited 3 factories that show you how Perfume is being created and offer you the opportunity to buy some of their own developed fragrances. Next to that you can visited the museum of Perfume, some of the gardens where they grow the flowers and Grasse itself is also a very nice lovely little town with small boutiques that sell lots of perfumes and soaps.
I decided to visited 2 factories. The first one is the biggest and is called Fragonard, named after a famous painter of the South of France. In the factory they showed us the process of distillation of the perfumes and the former process of drying flowers. This was a manual process of putting flowers in wooden frames, that had to be changed every other day. Nowadays this process is not durable anymore, but back in the early days this process was so time consuming that perfume was only available for the very wealthy people. In Fragonard they also showed us the place where the ‘nose’ is working. There are only 30 people in the world that are working as a nose, most of them located in France and they have to follow an education of 9 years to become one in order to distinguish up to 3000 different flavours, to build the perfumes. The desk of the nose looks a bit like a piano, this is because the perfume always consist of 3 types of fragrances, a base note, a heart note and a head note, so for the nose, creating a new perfume is like composing a piece of music. At Fragonard there is also a big store with nice presents, so this place is definitely worth a trip when you don’t want to return home empty handed.
After visiting Fragonard we also visited Molinard, a smaller more intimate factory. In this factory we could only get a French tour, but during high season they also offer English guided tours. The tour was a bit similar as the one in Fragonard, but the store is smaller and less commercial. Next to that I have a personal favour for the fragrances build in Molinard, but you should discover this for yourself, by just visiting all 3 factories.
Of course I didn’t return without buying myself a new fragrance called miss Habanita, an eau de toilette with a fruity flavour, mainly caused by white peaches. And no worries for me for when needing a refill for this perfume. All 3 factories ship world wide, so you can even get Grasse at home.. However, if I will need a refill there is no better reason than coming back to this little place, it will be my fifth time visiting, but it is too nice not to rediscover this little place.