Penhaligon’s has a long and distinguished history in the world of British perfumery dating back to the 1870s when William Penhaligon moved to London from Cornwall and started creating fine fragrances for discerning gentlemen. With this rich heritage and an archive of formulations, it’s no surprise that Penhaligon’s embarked on a venture to breathe new life into heritage fragrances dating back as far as 1907.
Walter Penhaligon was responsible for formulation and creation from 1887 until 1918, when he fell into ill health, and his son Leonard took over the business and creation. Following Leonard’s retirement in the late 1920s, it becomes unclear who became responsible for creation, however we do know that the fragrances were formulated in Mayfair’s Curzon Street.
1976 saw a flurry of creation for Penhaligon’s, due in part to a new relationship with the Pickthall family, who founded CPL Aromas, a perfume house with whom we have a continued relationship to this day, and because our flagship boutique on Wellington Street opened in 1975. The current versions Lily of the Valley and Violetta were also created in 1976 and have remained as part of the permanent Penhaligon’s collection, though a few of the creations at the time sadly faded from existence. Recent work on our archives has told us that a version of Lily of the Valley was part of Penhaligon’s collection by 1907.
Zizonia is known to have been part of our fragrance collection by 1907, and was created by Walter Penhaligon – it was revived as part of the Anthology Collection and modernised by Mike Parrott based on the formula from 1930. A nomadic and mysterious woody-oriental; an odyssey of burnt spices, vetiver and pepper, leading to a lush oasis of sweet orange, ginger and patchouli. Heady and enticing.
Eau de Cologne was originally created in 1927, and has been restored by Mike Parrott to its original formula. Eau de Cologne is a classic citrus with subtle ripples of powdered orange and aromatic rosemary. Lithe and highly polished, Eau de Cologne resonates with nostalgia for the bygone jazz age and the glitter of patent dancing shoes.
Eau de Verveine was originally created in 1949 and was recreated by Mike Parrott. Eau de Verveine is a grassy aromatic Verbena scent, with citrus and woods. The scent of an Indian Summer, shimmering heat haze, soft metallics, crumbled herbs, spices, musk and vanilla. In the distance echoes the evocative promise of rain.
Extract of Limes was originally created in 1963, and was resurrected by Mike Parrott. Extract of Limes is shattered sherbet and blossom honey. A classic citrus, penetrating and pure, with straight up West Indian lime, lemon oil and neroli. High, clear and instantly uplifting.
Gardenia was originally created in 1976 by Michael Pickthall, and was resurrected in 2009 as part of the Anthology Collection. A soliflore, recreated by Mike Parrott, Gardenia is a translucent watercolour in soft washes of tuberose, jasmine, gardenia, ylang-ylang, spice and vanilla. A radiant magnolia-tinted portrait of one of nature’s most sensual blooms.
Night Scented Stock was originally created in 1976 by Michael Pickthall, and was recreated by Mike Parrott in 2009 to join the Anthology Collection. Night Scented Stock is an edgy unfolding of pungent floral enchantment, deep with clove, heliotrope, violet, vanilla, musk and tonka bean. Hazy with arresting uncommon beauty.
Orange Blossom, originally created in 1976 by Michael Pickthall, has been transformed by Bertrand Duchaufour into a luminous, honeyed floral, inspired by the original fragrance. Lush with Calabrian orange, bergamot and tempered with Virginian cedar, rose and peach flower. Wearing Orange Blossom is like walking from shade into holiday sunshine.
Esprit du Roi was originally created in 1983 by Michael Pickthall, and was reimagined by Bertrand Duchaufour. Esprit du Roi returns as a lush woody citrus, heady with swirling scented foliage. Fresh tomato leaf, mint and raspberry leaf are combined with rich florals, warm woods and potent musks to create this masterpiece of contrasts.
Eau Sans Pareil was originally created in 1988 by Francis Pickthall, and was transformed by Beverley Bayne into a sparkling Chypre. Eau Sans Pareil opens with a giddy rush of sparkling fruits and sensual white flowers, softened with sweet woods, elegant oakmoss and musks. Powdery, wistful and romantic.