December 7, 2017
Essenza di un'Isola Acqua Trio photo by Robert H
I hate wrapping presents. There, I said it. What I love is finding gift boxes like the ones offered by Acqua Dell’Elba, especially this beautiful aquamarine gift “book” of fragrances. Called the “Essenza di un’ Isola” this gift box contains three bottles of Eau de Parfum; a 100 ml. Bottles of Acqua, and two 15 ml. bottles of one each: Smeraldo and Altrove. Although available within Italy, the line is previously unknown elsewhere until now; these beauties are finally available stateside thanks to ADE Imports through their website. We first featured Acqua Dell’Elba in our coverage of New York City’s Indie Beauty Expo by Senior Contributor Hernando Courtright, discovering that the line is actually quite popular throughout Italy, with small retail boutiques in many touristic locations; 29 locations in all. Based on the Tuscan island of Elba, the story of their creation goes something like this….
Fabio Murzi, Chiara Murzi and Marco Turoni via Acqua Dell’Elba
“On a bright May morning near the turn of the century, three members of the Murzi family set sail on the clear, blue waters that surround Elba, their island home off the west coast of Italy. The fresh Elban breeze that day would carry them on the first leg of an amazing journey. They landed on 'Isoletta di Paolina' – a little island named for Napoleon Bonaparte’s sister Paolina during her infamous brother's exile on the island."
Paolina Bonaparte Borghese
Near that island, a polished ivory statuette bottle had been recovered in the 11th Century from the hold of a sailing ship. Its watertight lid had protected a precious perfume and this became the inspiration – a message from the sea.
via Acqua Dell'Elba Paolina Bonaparte
The idea came to them loud and clear and with it came a desire to recreate that experience with a perfume that was not just a fragrance but an essence like no other – the essence of an island.
Aethalia was the name given to Elba in the ancient Greek Legend Jason and the Argonauts
The first perfume creations were introduced in 2001. The fragrances pay tribute to the island's wild flowers, herbs and citrus, the beauty and the scent of the sea and the breezes that carry these essences around the island. They are authentic, free from the superfluous, and made just for those who love simplicity, transparency, and beauty. They evoke the charm of Elba’s landscape, its art and culture, and its simple, natural way of life. The heart of Acqua dell’Elba perfumes is in the laboratory in the Elban town of Marciana Marina, where Chiara and Fabio Murzi and Marco Turoni have been working since 2000 alongside master craftsmen who have given life to these unique and inimitable perfumes.” -Acqua dell’Elba
Island of Elba Photo via Acqua Dell’Elba
These delightful fragrances are full of joie-de-vivre and inherent sunshine; the perfect bottled representation of a beachside holiday in December. The perfumes glow with an inner-heat, and I can’t wait to wear them again in warmer weather. They perfectly capture the rugged beauty of Elba, replete with ozonic watery notes interspersed with dry herbal and mineral-like notes that bring the cliffs, green scrub, and cypress trees to life.
via Acqua Dell’Elba
My favorite in the Essenza de un’ isola gift set is Altrove . Inspired by the island of Montecristo with its charm, mystery and remoteness, Altrove is a sheer explosion of tart citrus and blue Mediterranean notes backed by sweet incense that brings a smoky, earthy depth to the composition. Not usually a fan of incense notes this one has captured my heart and soul, a minor miracle. It wears and drapes as casually as a light cashmere summer sweater thrown over your shoulders. Although labeled as a mens fragrance! I cannot imagine any woman not loving this scent. Notes: Strawberry tree berries, Jasmine, rose, tobacco, iris, Juniper, cypress, Mediterranean shrubs, incense
Disclosure: Thank you SO much to Acqua dell’Elba USA for supplying my gift box. The opinions are my own.
–Robert Herrmann, Senior Editor
-Art Direction: Michelyn Camen, Editor-in-Chief
Meet the Foundersof Aqua dell'Elba: Friday December 8, 2017 at Parfumerie, 155 Lafayette Street, NYC, NY 3-6 PM and visit the pop-up shop Saturday 2-7PM.
Thanks to Acqua dell’Elba USA, we have a holiday surprise: a Essenza di un'Isola Acqua Trio or a 100 ml of Altrove for a registered reader In the USA, so be sure to register if you have not done so. PLEASE NOTE THAT THE LOG-IN FOR OUR SITE IS RIGHT BELOW OUR AWARDS ON THE UPPER RIGHT TO MAKE IT EASIER TO NAVIGATE. To be eligible please let us know what appeals to you about Robert’s reviews, which prize you would like should you win and which Aqua dell'Elba perfume you might like to try from their line of For Him and For Her. Draw closes December10, 2017.