Roja Dove Roja Haute Luxe: Magnificent & Superb

Superb, opulent, and one of the best fragrances that I’ve smelt in years. That’s the nutshell synopsis for Roja Dove‘s Roja Haute Luxe, a truly head-turning and jaw-dropping chypre-oriental with such beauty and multi-faceted magnificence that I didn’t know what to do with myself at times, unable to do anything beyond sniff with stunned awe and think, “this is what fragrances should be, what they were meant to be.”

Roja Haute Luxe via rojaparfums.com

Roja Haute Luxe via rojaparfums.com

I don’t think I can describe just how beautiful Roja Haute Luxe is without it sounding like inane hyperbole, but it is one of those fragrances that feels like a privilege to try, a once-in-a-lifetime experience for most of us. I’d heard about it, descriptions that were usually accompanied with figurative gasps or literal raves, but I didn’t really believe them. Not really. For one thing, Roja Dove’s other hugely acclaimed perfume, Diaghilev, while opulent and complex, had done little for me personally, never once moved me deeply, and never left me wishing I owned it.

For another, I think it’s difficult to comprehend the sheer breadth and scope of Roja Haute Luxe’s extravagant magnificence until one tries it for oneself. It’s not the easiest scent to sample, but I had the opportunity when one of my readers, “Kevin,” asked me to review it last month and generously offered to send me some from his own bottle. After much hesitation, I agreed on the condition that he wouldn’t become personally offended or deeply outraged if I hated it. After all, “beauty” is in the eye (or nose) of the beholder, and could it really be that good? Well, as it turns out, Roja Haute Luxe really is that good. In fact, I thought it was exceptional, in the proper, full sense of that word.

Roja Haute Luxe is a pure parfum that was released in 2013. People call it a number of different names. Fragrantica lists it as Roja Parfum or Roja, though a Fragrantica article and interview with Roja Dove went by “ROJA Haute Luxe.” Others call it Roja Luxe or just ROJA (with capital letters). A few simply call it “the one with the gold leaf,” which is what I do myself sometimes. The reason is because Roja Haute Luxe (which is how it’s called on the Roja Parfums website) actually does contain 24-carat gold leaf flakes or flecks. The Fragrantica article linked above implies or claims that Roja Dove included the gold as irony because it was the least expensive part of the fragrance as compared to the commercial cost of the ingredients within. Personally, I find that hard to believe. “Irony” is not the first thing that logically comes to most people’s minds when seeing 24-carat gold flakes in a bottle. I think it’s far more likely that the gold was included as part of Mr. Dove’s love of bling, and that marketing subsequently put a spin on the tale.

Roja Haute Luxe in its box via Fragrantica.

Roja Haute Luxe in its box via Fragrantica.

What is incontrovertible is the fact that little expense was spared in the creation of Roja Haute Luxe, and that it was intended to be a purely personal creation originally. Now Smell This posted the official press release back in 2013 which states that Roja Dove made Haute Luxe for himself with all the raw materials he loves the most after the fragrance that he’d worn for almost 30 years was reformulated. On Fragrantica, one of my readers, “Jean B Grenouille” wrote that a molecular extraction technique was used to remove the (purportedly) allergenic compounds from the oakmoss that always puts the EU/IFRA’s knickers in such a twist. That is the same technique Bertrand Duchaufour used to create the stunning, vintage chypre-like oakmoss verdancy of MDCI‘s Chypre Palatin, and it cannot be cheap. No expense was spared for the packaging either, from the gold-plating on the bottle to the white jewel box which Fragrantica says is “lined in silk crêpe de chine and lacquered by the renowned Carrs of Sheffield.”

Source: Rojaparfums.com

Source: Rojaparfums.com

On his Roja Parfums website, Roja Dove describes Haute Luxe and its notes as follows:

“MY PERFUME”
“I made this creation using all the materials I love the most. Having been asked constantly, “what do you wear”, usually followed by, “can I buy it?”, I decided to make a small quantity available each year.” – Roja Dove.

Top Notes: Bergamot
Heart Notes: Rose, Jasmine, Ylang Ylang
Base Notes: Ginger, Cinnamon, Clove, Patchouli, Oakmoss, Cedarwood, Amyris, Benzoin, Vanilla, Orris, Styrax, Labdanum, Ambergris.

Photo: Harry Huang Photography. Source: Pinterest.

Photo: Harry Huang Photography. Source: Pinterest.

Roja Haute Luxe opens on my skin with gloriously sumptuous oakmoss that is plush, fresh, emerald-green, and as thick as a Bavarian duvet. It’s fully fused with the most intoxicating patchouli that ripples waves of spicy, ambered, slightly boozy, and quietly smoky richness. Its spiciness is delicately, oh so carefully, accentuates by pinches of cinnamon, and the merest speck of clove. Doing obeisance to this powerful central core are handmaidens of sweet jasmine and fresh, velvety roses, each one wafting a nectared, almost honeyed sweetness as if they had been plucked from a garden at the height of their blooming lushness. In the base and all around oozes amber, a molten, musky river thick with balsamic resins that have been tamed by a silky vanilla which smells like the most expensive, delicious crème anglaise.

MDCI's Chypre Palatin. Source: Luckyscent.

MDCI’s Chypre Palatin. Source: Luckyscent.

It’s an utterly decadent barrage that feels practically hedonistic in its excess. This is sensuality in the old meaning of the word, a gratification of the appetites and senses. Roja Haute Luxe is filled to the brim with so many notes, nuances, and opulent layers that it turns my head; my brain tries to process the near simultaneous deluge of individual notes, but simply ends up concluding and repeating, “Oh my God.” The extravagant olfactory banquet somehow spread its tendrils even from the closed sample vial, oozing a thick blanket of oakmoss and spicy patchouli that instantly reminded me of Chypre Palatin, but the sheer depth of Roja Haute Luxe puts that eau de parfum to the pale. It might as well be a wan ghost in comparison.

Diaghilev. Source: Paris Gallery, UAE.

Diaghilev. Source: Paris Gallery, UAE.

Even if I hadn’t previously read about the molecular extraction technique used here, I would have known it from the first sniff. With the exception of Chypre Palatin, I’ve never encountered this sort of authentic, genuinely plush, deeply baroque mossiness in any other modern fragrance because it would violate EU/IFRA restrictions. I didn’t even smell it in Roja Dove’s Diaghilev, and I took out the remainder of my sample to compare. Diaghilev opens with a very distinct, powerful bergamot-oakmoss aroma, not oakmoss-patchouli-amber, and the moss itself lacks the over-the-top density that is apparent here. It’s a significantly cooler, more mineralised, aloof sort of moss; far less rounded-out, supple, emerald-green, fresh, and plush. Finally, Diaghilev as a whole is never so floral, spicy, ambered, warm, and quasi-oriental right from the start.

"Ponthus beech, Broceliande forest" by Philippe Manguin. Source: hdwallpapersin.com

“Ponthus beech, Broceliande forest” by Philippe Manguin. Source: hdwallpapersin.com

Chypre Palatin is the closest match in my eyes, but it isn’t identical and there are differences. Roja Haute Luxe is a pure parfum rather than an eau de parfum; it brims to the top with the typical Roja Dove excess of notes (which I love); there isn’t even a faint whiff of animalic leather in the base; and the scent feels fractionally more floral with a slightly greater quantity of jasmine and rose. In addition, something about the flowers bears that narcotic, almost crystalline liquidity and nectared feel that I find so typical of hyacinths in nature. Every time that I’ve tried Roja Haute Luxe, the opening minutes had that intoxicating, floral, liquid purity that not only reminds me of hyacinths but that faintly echoes the hyacinth note in Roja Dove’s Risqué Pour Femme. It’s a fleeting touch that may stem from a certain greenness and freshness underlying the nectared flowers.

Shah Cheragh, Shiraz, Iran. Photo: Yuen Yan/Creative Commons via Slate.com

Shah Cheragh Mosque, Shiraz, Iran. Photo: Yuen Yan/Creative Commons via Slate.com

Whatever the source, it is only one of the innumerable nuances that Roja Haute Luxe throws out like rays of light reflecting off a crystal chandelier in a palace, or perhaps the famous, green crystal Mosque Shah Cheragh in Shiraz. Then again, maybe a diamond would be more apt analogy since this feels like one jewel of a fragrance, the sort that one needs to sniff at least once in one’s life, if only to remember (or experience for the first time) what truly masterful, good perfume smells like. In the past weeks, I’ve smelt mediocrity after mediocrity with a few rest stops at utter garbage and an occasional toxic waste dump. You have no idea how much it gets to me after a while. When my mood was particularly low, I’d take out Roja Haute Luxe, sniff the sample stick/wand for a few moments (I didn’t want to waste a single drop by using it willy-nilly), and I’d feel my spirits lift for a short while before I returned to the grim task of testing or describing the latest aromachemical pigsty.

Mosque Shah Cheragh, Shiraz. Source: Wikimedia

Mosque Shah Cheragh, Shiraz. Source: Wikimedia

It’s difficult to describe Roja Haute Luxe’s development with any precision because it’s truly the definition of a “kaleidoscopic” scent, a shimmering vortex whose nuances are rarely the exact same way twice, almost as though it were a living creature on my skin. Frequently, the spiciness surges to the forefront at the end of the first hour; sometimes, it’s the intertwined duo of rose and jasmine, though, sometimes, one or the other takes turns being more prominent. In the second hour and through some of the middle stage, the styrax wafts a prominent amount of resinous smokiness. Occasionally, the vanilla is quite clear before it’s swallowed up by the base, though it returns in the drydown.

Source: imgfave.com. Original artist unknown.

Source: imgfave.com. Original artist unknown.

Nevertheless, a few things do happen consistently. First, the spicy, ambery, lightly boozy patchouli becomes extremely prominent on my skin from the second hour onwards. (And it’s the best patchouli I’ve smelt in ages.) Second, Roja Haute Luxe deepens and deepens over the course of the first four hours which is also the period with the greatest range and complexity in notes and when the fragrance is the most opulent as a whole. It is such an opaquely dense, intense, strong, and grandiose bouquet in those hours that I feel as though I’ve been swaddled up to my ears in the thickest emerald-and-gold brocade duvet, then cocooned in a palatial room.

At times, I think of Mitsouko in this stage. To be precise, a form of vintage Mitsouko without any fruitiness or skankiness, but with its core essence concentrated down to have the heft of Mitsouko parfum on Olympic steroids. I strongly suspect it was Mitsouko that Roja Dove wore for almost 30 years before its reformulation made him give up and create this perfume, in part because strains of Mitsouko appear in many other Roja creations as well. Having said that, I don’t think Roja Haute Luxe is really similar. Vintage Mitsouko was very fruity with a powerful peach juiciness in addition to its very crisp, brisk bergamot; its patchouli was never profound or hefty on my skin; its floralcy smelt quite different, and it had orris makeup, violet lipstick, and powdery Guerlainade in its later stages. None of that is really the case here. Furthermore, Mitsouko was always unquestionably a chypre from start to finish; Roja Haute Luxe is not.

"Light Bubbles 3" by Coloreef via redbubble.com

“Light Bubbles 3” by Coloreef via redbubble.com

That brings me to the third thing that I consistently experienced. Roughly 4.5 to 5.5 hours into its development, Roja Haute Luxe begins to soften, its projection drops, and its focus changes from an oakmoss chypre to an oriental. It’s a seamless blend of oakmoss, patchouli, cinnamon, mild cloves, balsamic resins, quietly smoky styrax, and a pinch of ginger, all enveloped in a musky amber. It’s a lava flow of molten richness that smolders, but in a more restrained way than the in-your-face intensity of many Middle Eastern orientals.

It’s a really sexy bouquet, which surprised me given that restraint and the rather formal sophistication of the fragrance as a whole. I kept thinking that if I smelt this on a passing stranger, I’d follow them to ask what it was and it would take serious effort not to lean in close to nuzzle them. Aventus or Amber Absolute may be a “panty-dropper” for some, to use a loathsome phrase in the common fragrance vernacular, but this is what I would turn to.

Source: theworddetective.wordpress.com

Source: theworddetective.wordpress.com

Fourth, and finally, Roja Haute Luxe is also consistent in its drydown. From the 7th hour onwards, it is a delectably cozy, comforting, multi-faceted goldenness created by way of patchouli, toffee’d labdanum, the musky and occasionally salty aroma of caramel-laced ambergris, creamy vanilla, and cinnamon-scented benzoin.

The prominence or strength of the individual elements varies from one wearing to the next. Usually, the mixed amber accord dominates, but ripples of vanilla ebb and flow through it. Sometimes there is a powerful waft of cinnamon or a distinct sense of resinous darkness. At other times, there is not. Instead, a subtle streak of honey or beeswax runs under the labdanum. Generally, the oakmoss is now merely a whisper that pops up once in a while in the background, a ghostly thing that disappears entirely a short while later. By the time the 10th hour rolls around, Roja Haute Luxe is a soft blur of amber lightly infused with patchouli, cinnamon-scented benzoin, resins, and a hint of vanilla. The accompanying players gradually fall to the wayside until, in its final hours, all that’s left is golden warmth.

Roja Haute Luxe had excellent longevity, moderate projection, and initially strong sillage that took a few hours to turn soft. Using a few smears equal to 2 small sprays from an actual bottle, the fragrance opened with about 4 inches of projection and 4-5 inches of sillage that grew to about 8 inches after 15 minutes. After 2 hours, the projection was 2-3 inches, while the scent trail dropped back down to about 4 inches. The projection was about an inch at the 3 hour mark, while the sillage was soft. That’s rather typical for an extrait or pure parfum because they tend to stay closer to the skin than eau de parfums. Roja Haute Luxe’s projection was about 0.5 after 4.25 hours, hovering just above the skin, but it stayed there for hours and didn’t turn into a true skin scent until 8.5 hours into its development. All in all, Roja Haute Luxe lasted just shy of 14.5 hours. I think my numbers, especially for longevity, would be higher if I applied a larger dosage, but I was reluctant to do so given the cost and amount that I had, my need to test the fragrance at least a few times over, and my wish to conserve a few drops for myself for later.

On Fragrantica, a number of people love Roja Haute Luxe, but more than one review inevitably ends up focusing more (or solely) on its price rather than its scent. I’ve written about super-luxury fragrances and the issue of price before, and I won’t repeat myself here. This fragrance is obviously the literal embodiment of my “Roja Dove Rule,” and whether or not it’s “worth it” is going to be a wholly subjective, individual assessment. So, I’ll talk more about other people’s opinions of the actual olfactory bouquet. For one Fragrantica commentator who first smelt it blindly in a line of Roja scents and without knowing either the name or its price, Roja Haute Luxe was “exquisite” with a quality that stood out “even when compared with other scents in the Roja line (which is not a line known for shirking on quality), and, above all, it will make you close your eyes, be still, and smile. A lot.” For another poster, though, Roja Haute Luxe was simultaneously a gorgeous, luxurious “work of art,” but not “that original or earth-shattering.”

Nicolas Poussin, "Bacchanal before a Statue of Pan," 1631. Source: artble.com

Nicolas Poussin, “Bacchanal before a Statue of Pan,” 1631. Source: artble.com

A third commentator, however, found Roja Haute Luxe earth-shattering enough to actually bring up the infamous orgy scene in Suskind‘s Le Parfum when Grenouille brings out his magical elixir to the crowd. “Originaldeftom” writes, in part:

[Grenouille] sends his magic creation into the air. Suddenly time stops and people are fainting. They are falling in love and they are making love.

THIS fragrance creates THAT MOMENT.

MASTERPIECE. The Holy Grail. Full Stop. [All caps in the original and from him.]

For “Mimi61,” Roja Haute Luxe was more of an oriental than a chypre, and one that echoed not Mitsouko but the opening of another Guerlain creation, Attrape Coeur/Guet Apens:

I find Roja more an oriental than chypre perfume.It is a very rich,deep ,resinous and syrapy sweet perfume.As soon as I applied it on my wrist it reminded me of another perfume and it wasn’t Mitsouko , as several reviewers have mentioned.To me, this smells very similar to Guerlain Attrape Coeur/Guet Apens,at least the first part ,I like the drydown of Roja better as it is less sweet.This is a perfume of undoubted high quality with a very good sillage and it lasted 6-8 hours on my skin with traces left in the morning.

If I had all the money in the world, I would not buy a bottle of Roja Haute Luxe. I’d buy TWO. One to spray on myself with abandon; one to spray on my sheets so that I could be enveloped in opulence and lulled to sleep. Neither Diaghilev nor vintage Mitsouko ever triggered that response in me. And, while I loved Roja Dove’s NuWa in its original, unreformulated form, it was always more of a dangerous hell-cat instead of being jaw-droppingly beautiful.

There is also something very soothing about Roja Haute Luxe to me, even in its chypre stage. Perhaps it’s because there is spicy warmth right from the start rather than the haughty aloofness of a real chypre; perhaps it’s the abundance of my beloved patchouli; or perhaps it’s the sense of familiarity that many people detect in its bouquet. I don’t find anything wrong with that in this case because I don’t think Roja Haute Luxe was meant to re-invent the wheel, even if one could possibly create a genuinely “original” chypre-oriental after 100 years of such fragrances. No, I think it’s simply meant to be the most extravagant, baroque, hedonistic version of that genre possible — and it accomplishes that goal in spades.

Truly magnificent and exceptional, this is one of the best fragrances I’ve smelt in years and a joy that I shall remember for many more years to come.

DETAILS:
Cost & Availability: Roja Haute Luxe is a pure parfum that comes in a 100 ml bottle for $3500, €3250, or £2500. In the U.S.: Roja Haute Luxe is now at Luckyscent. Osswald NYC says it is available by request. It is not listed on their website on their Roja page. You can probably order by phone; their number is: (212) 625-3111. It is probably available by request at Bergdorf Goodman or Neiman Marcus, but it’s not listed there, either. Outside the U.S.: In the U.K., you can buy it from Harrods, their Salons de Parfums, or Roja Parfums which also offers a 7.5 ml decant for £190. In Europe, Roja Haute Luxe is available at Paris’ Jovoy. It is not listed at First in Fragrance, and I haven’t found it anywhere else. It’s probably available by request at some high-end Roja Dove retailers, particularly in Russia and the Middle East. Samples: Samples are not really available. OsswaldNY has a Sample program, but several luxury fragrances are excluded. You can call to see if you can work out something. Surrender to Chance doesn’t have Roja Haute Luxe.

59 thoughts on “Roja Dove Roja Haute Luxe: Magnificent & Superb

  1. oh my!! This sounds just like my kind of perfume. Those prices!! hopefully it’ll be available at some point at surrender to chance to sample. I usually love his style and though I have very often missed the chance to own decants of his perfume, I am glad his perfumes exist. Though I might have to kick myself for not snagging a decant of pre-reform Nuwa, And I LOVE Puredistance M too.

    • I know how much you love Chypre Palatin, Lavanya, so I think the richness of this one would make your head spin. If you’re ever in NY, I hope you stop by Osswald to give it a sniff, though I suspect they probably have their bottle hidden in the back, lol. I can’t see STC getting it given the cost and how it would put most people off, but who knows. BTW, like you, I kick myself for not getting a small decant of Nuwa before it was gutted and watered down.

    • I just wish samples were available, simply so people could experience it just once or twice even if they couldn’t afford an actual bottle. This is one of those fragrances which really felt like a privilege to sniff and an experience, if that makes sense.

        • I’m so, so glad you got to sample this, and I hope you get a decant. You know I enjoy your bad reviews, but It was a joy to read this, and read of your enthusiasm. I know how taxing it is for you to review so many duds and disappointments. I doubt I’ll ever be a financial position to even justify a decant of this frag and I’m okay with that ’cause I got a lot of vicarious pleasure reading about your enjoyment! In fact, it was simply thrilling to read the opening lines of this review. More happy for you than for the fragrance – ha!

  2. I smelled this on paper (I know, heresy!) and on someone else’s skin earlier this year at Bergdorf. OMG (the perfume AND the price)…my eyes rolled to the back of my head. I kept going to the other person “Let me smell your wrist.” – she would smell it and then I would smell it and we both went “Ahhhh, this is soooo goood”…we did that a few more times with Tom looking on with a bemused smile. Alas, my heart was set on J.A.R. (itch was satisfied) but I kept thinking about it and could not justify owning 100 mLs of this perfume. I thought about hosting a split; however, not enough people have the opportunity to smell this and even a 10th of the bottle is still a cool $350.

    I also wondered if the gold flecks would eventually gum up the atomizer.

    I should not visit BG next week like I planned to..don’t visit BG…don’t look at the Roja website…

    • First, congratulations on finally getting your JAR. Second, I’d definitely participate in a split for this! If you get others to join in (and I suspect you might get a few interested parties after this review) and you decide to go ahead with the split, please let me know.

    • No, my dear. This still bears a mossiness which Alahine never had, and it lastly solidly way into the middle phase and in lesser form until the 9th hour. It also has more oakmoss plushness on my skin than florals. In Alahine, the spices and florals are the real core until the amber takes over. Plus, Alahine might as well be water as compared to the opulence of this scent. I think it would be too heavy for your FL weather, especially given your personal preference for lighter scents.

      • Good to know, Lovely Lady!!! Hahahahahah!!! There’s a “method to my mandess” by choosing to live in a Tropical Paradise 24-7-365!!! It’s a tough job, (sighs) but somebody’s got to do it!!! 😉

  3. This is the most dreamy review I ever read.
    Even though I never liked Mitsouko on my skin (the real thing) I think this would go very well with my chemestry and then… with that pricetag it will only be mine if a miracle happens. So please fairy godmother send me a bottle of divine.

    • Kirsemor, I never liked Mitsouko, either, heresy as that is to say. (I also loathe Chanel No. 5., another much-adored legend. lol) But I think Roja Haute Luxe is oriental in a way that Mitsouko never was. It’s essentially a chypre-oriental hybrid in the beginning, then an oriental. If you’re ever in Paris or London, I hope you’ll find time to go to one of the places that carries it in order to give it a sniff.

  4. Wow, this sounds completely amazing. All of Roja Dove’s perfumes have an opulent richness to them and it sounds like this one is 100 times more so. Maybe I will be able to sample it someday at Bergdorf’s. I’m going to Vegas in March. I’ll bet at least one store there has it. I just want a sniff.

    • I hope you’ll get to try it, sweetie. Does Bergdorf have a Las Vegas branch? Neiman Marcus does, I think, so perhaps they’ll have it in-store.

  5. Its a good scent but for the price they sell it… no thank you. I dont think parfumery is about its bottle or gold flakes inside. Its deep powerful rich… but not something original. All Roja’s scents are just deeper, richier, sometimes more complex versions of other scents i used to smell. More polished and with added twists and own nuances. Thats it.
    I know one perfume which i find way more beautiful then this which is Mitsouko. I guess Roja was inspired by that masterpiece. Btw it lasts only 2-3 hours loud and behaves as a very quiet. Max price for this is about 500$. Including its bottle and those vulgar gold flakes.

    • I talked specifically about Mitsouko in the post. I see big differences. As I said, though, Mitsouko was a clear inspiration and I agree that many of the Roja Dove fragrances are inspired by other things (primarily from Guerlain). As for whether Roja Haute Luxe is worth its price, that’s a personal determination that will vary from one person to another. I have no doubt a lot of people will feel as you do.

      • 3 hours ago i applied Roja on my hand and now i can hardly smell it. For example Roja Fetish man lives on my skin more then 10 hours. Not only me noticed its lasting issues. Its very nice scent, like many other nice scents from 300 to 500 usd. This one is 3,500-5,000 depending on country. Only just because its Roja Dove’s personnel scent (a nice one tbh) it does not shift me to buying it. I don’t think that its a bad thing to get inspired by something in creating your own. But even if u do a little better something that has been created by some other houses already, then u cant charge this that much. If i happen to meet a special, unique and sublime perfume i would buy it for this price. This is not the case. But i can tottaly understand your glory about this perfume since its really
        Delicious and Hi-End.

    • Please dont sell your kidney ;))) it only lived on my skin 4-5 hours (not only on mine), thanks God, cause i have some waves from my jacket and it causes queasiness… After 2-3 wearings ull get used to it and will miss your kidney when u would love to get some vodka or whiskey lol ;))))

      • Haha Mark- having one kidney would present possible problems down the road no doubt.
        When our Kafka gives a review olfactoria orgasma, I can’t help but want to try this! 😀

  6. Thank you so much for your time sharing your thoughts on this frag. My feelings about it are much the same as yours. Your note of it being a “kaleidoscopic” scent, in particular, resonated. For the first few weeks that I owned my first bottle of this, I would shake the bottle to make sure things were mixed up because each time I put it on, it seemed different some way (all good). My guess is that it has a quite high proportion of natural ingredients which give it significant depth and each whiff gives you just a small shift in where you are in that profile. I find each day to be a sort of olfactory journey with this one.

    Regarding a question that I’ve seen, the gold flakes haven’t caused any problems with the atomizer. I do find them annoying as they settle in the bottom and I feel the need to give a little wiggle to the bottle to float them out so I don’t get a lot of it in a spray. I then need to wait for the dry down to brush them off exposed skin (wearing glitter to the office even if its 24kt gold isn’t me). When I was in London recently, I was able to special order Luxe with no gold flake to rid myself of this problem.

    I am curious though, do you see this as a unisex frag? Would you view it as “office appropriate” (cost concerns aside)?

      • No, it does not unscrew. You can purchase a 250ml “bottle” of this at Harrods in London though which does have a screw cap. It comes in a metal flagon used in perfume manufacturing. As you can imagine, it goes for a huge sum. Have considered some of the travel atomizers? With some of them, you pull the metal cap off the parfum bottle and slip the travel atomizer onto the white stem and decant directly into the travel atomizer. You can do this with virtually no spillage. They are a little more expensive than the small plastic ones but given the cost of what your putting in them…

    • It’s completely unisex, in my opinion, and it could be worn anywhere. Nothing about it comes across as inappropriate for the workplace, no matter how conservative.

  7. This was a magical review. From your words to the accompanying pictures it just sucked me in. I’m not even sure this would be a perfume that I would like but I’m certainly curious about it now. Thank goodness I’ll probably never get the chance to sniff it. That price! Falling for this one would be like having a huge crush on a movie star I’d never get to meet and who I wouldn’t be able to interest even if I did.
    I will say this, I am so happy to know that there are perfumes out there that make you swoon once in a while. It’s such a great thing when a fragrance does that.

  8. No perfume is worth that kind of money, it reminds me of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills wearing $75,000 gold coating sunglasses, it’s beyond ridiculous, it’s tacky and classless! Even if I could afford it, I’d rather donate money to animal welfare organizations and rescue projects.

    Buy No. 5 parfum, Misia, 31 Rue Cambon or find vintage Caron Narcisse Noir, With Pleasure La Fete des Roses, Guerlain Mitsouko, Patou Normandie, Caline for outstanding perfumes and save a lot of money!!!

    • Why not do both if perfumes and donating to welfare organizations and rescue project give you pleasure? Personally, I won’t spend more $s than I donate to charity to make sure I balance the universe in my own way. If one truly wants to save a lot of money, I suggest not buying any perfumes at all, even the great classics in vintage. I don’t need 100 mLs of this (nor of any perfume for the matter but heh, 99.99% of the 100mLs are cheaper than this one) but the 7.5 mL Discovery Atomiser is really tempting.

  9. I am a huge fan of this composition. Everything about the scent (all elements throughout its development, and of course its awesome performance) is just about perfect to my nose. This shares a base similar to Diaghilev but with more going on, including gorgeous and slightly sweet violets and some dry spices.

    I equally love Roja’s Great Britain, which is very similar to Haute Luxe. In fact, take HL, dial up the violets and ease off the cinnamon and you’re in Great Britain territory. I’m a violets fanboy for sure, so both of these are near the top of my all time favorites list.

  10. I smelled Luxe Haute before and it was truly exquisite. It has a very bright scent and has a “glistening” effect to it (maybe I was influenced by the golden flakes or something) that reminds me of Guerlain’s Encens Mythique d’Orient. I suspect it’s the ambergris; it smells really really strong here.

    The strange thing is, I don’t see parallels with MDCI Chypre Palatin. Palatin is very green, dark and leathery. Luxe Haute in contrast is very bright and green but the citrus-greenness comes from petitgrain imo. I do get oakmoss in both of them.

    Like many of your other reviews, your selection of photos describes my thoughts of Luxe Haute much better than any word(s) I can use in my vocabulary. Not worth busting the bank to buy a bottle for myself for sure, but it was quite the experience to see and smell it.

    P.S. Palatin is my most favorite perfume of all time. I remember wearing it on 28 Dec on a clear blue 35-degree F morning, and it was utterly mesmerizing how the perfume smelled then on my skin and scarf.

    • So interesting about Chypre Palatin on your skin. On mine, it’s dominated by the same sort of mossiness as in Haute Luxe, both bright emerald-green, plush, and vibrant. Yes, Chypre Palatin has leather underneath that mossiness but it’s outweighed on my skin by spicy patchouli. That’s actually a big companion to the mossiness or greenness in both fragrances. In Chypre Palatin, there is also a undercurrent amount of vanilla right from the start which, in conjunction with the patchouli, may be why the overall scent doesn’t read as dark to me as it does to you. Either way, it’s an exceptional fragrance and I share your love for it, Nazrul. I have no doubt that you smell quite fantastic in it.

      BTW, I’m glad the photos in my review help because that is my intention or goal in using them, to convey the images in my mind in a way that words sometimes cannot. 🙂

      • That’s because, after trying some perfumes, I learned that my skin accentuates tobacco, leather, patchouli and oud notes. Hence, my favorite perfumes tend to be those with dark and heavy scents.

        Not sure if you have tried before but if you have the chance, you can try Phaedon Tabac Rouge and Parfums de Marly Herod. They are marvelous perfumes with tobacco as the main note and are among my top 5 😉

        • Herod is chockful of ISO E Super which is not my thing. Tabac Rouge is too sweet for my tastes and quite similar to Tobacco Vanille, imo, but it has some nice parts.

          • Haha, frankly I don’t know what Iso E Super smells like at all. Hopefully I learn how to pick out the note in order to understand, someday.

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  12. Thank you for your beautiful review. I love the way you describe my work, and I am thrilled that you love this creation as much as you do.
    I hope all is well with you…….

  13. This stuff is unbelievable. I mean make me drool good. I bought the discovery atomizer, but almost guarantee a full bottle is in my future.

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