If there is one fine jewellery house that can translate the beauty of precious gems into a fragrance, it would be Bvlgari. With the help of master perfumer Alberto Morillas, who has been designing luxury scents for almost half a century, the Maison has envisioned something truly treasurable.
Le Gemme Reali offers three rich Eaux de Parfums that includes sapphire blue for Nylaia, emerald green for Veridia, ruby red for Rubinia. Inspired by Byzantine Empress Theodora who was known for her ambition, curiosity and knowledge, the collection pays tribute to the woman whose aura and personality equalled the magnificence of her reign, and strives to evoke the same strength in a modern woman.
The concept required the mastery of a famed perfumer and no one has a resume like Alberto Morillas. Born in Spain, he spent his youth immersed in the colourful region of Andalusia. Surrounded by such eclectic beauty, it was a natural choice for him to select the School of Beaux Arts in Geneva, Switzerland, for his studies. Lured by the local perfume business there, he was introduced to the metier of perfumery and joined Firmenich in 1970 as a Junior Perfumer. Throughout his distinguished career, he has embraced the passion and legendary practices of ancient Perfumers and in 1988, Morillas was nominated a Master Perfumer. In 2003 he was honoured with the coveted “Prix François Coty” in recognition of his extraordinary contributions in his career.
We sit down with Morillas to discover the inspiration behind Le Gemme Reali and his view on the fragrance industry.
How long did you work on Le Gemme Reali for?
We worked on this collection for two years. My job is to find a new accord and to make this beautiful and unique fragrance.
Who is it for?
This collection is for connoisseur, people who love perfume and luxury and its for men and women. When you have this type of accord it can be worn by men and women and when I create perfume I don’t think of it as feminine or masculine. When you smell Rubinia you have this scent of energy that a man can wear.
Which of the three scents took the most work?
The most challenging was the Rubinia because it had to be intense but also masculine and feminine with notes of sandalwood. Every one was a challenge as it’s not so easy to create a different emotion in each creation. I think Rubinia will appeal to the Middle East, its mysterious.
Could these fragrances be layered?
There is a culture to mix and you can mix these three gems. In the Middle East people understand fragrance and enjoy to mix.
What was it like working with Bvlgari?
In this collection you have the emotion and you have the name, not everyone has the name like Bvlgari, it creates dreams.
How should fragrance make you feel?
When you wear one type of perfume you feel much stronger, it’s your aura when you meet people. Perfume changes a lot with the skin which adds emotions and reflects energy.
Should we wear a fragrance on our skin or clothes?
When you spray on the skin you combine the scent and your personality, and when you spray on the clothes you get the pure scent.
How do you know when you’ve created a perfectly balanced fragrance?
To create a new fragrance, it costs a lot of money and if you make it quickly with not a lot of passion you see the difference. You need to have the passion to start and energy to stop. It’s difficult to decide when it’s finished, sometimes it’s good when it’s finished. Sometimes I am very happy as there is a lot of intensity, but then I’m sad its finished.
If you could bottle Dubai, what would it smell like?
The first impression is warmth and water, and when you arrive in the airport you smell all the perfumes and I love it, you don’t find anywhere else in the world where you smell perfumes when you arrive. Everyone is impeccable.
How has the fragrance market changed?
There is too much marketing and a lot of tests. For this collection it’s not a marketing collection, it’s from the heart. When you need to please thousands you make a test but people don’t understand, but with my big successes we never made a test. It’s a feeling, we decide it’s good.
Do you remember the first fragrance you ever owned?
The first fragrance I owned is Mastier de Cartier.
What are you wearing today?
Today I wear the next Bvlgari for men that will be out soon.