French group LVMH yesterday inaugurated the creative workshops that will be shared by Jacques Cavallier Belletrud and François Demachy, the Master Perfumers of the Maisons Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior, in the heart of Grasse, a city situated on the French Riviera and which boast to be the cradle of contemporary perfumery, thanks to a history of flower farming.
“Les Fontaines Parfumées”, the site dedicated to the production of perfume, has been given a new lease of life. Located at the heart of the town, the old building, which used to be a form and a perfumery shop, has been restored entirely.
As nature constitutes a special source of inspiration for the Master Perfumers, 350 essences have been rigorously selected by Jacques Cavallier Belletrud and François Demachy, both originally from Grasse, to create a sensual palette throughout the estate: exceptional roses, tuberoses, jasmin, citrus trees, lavender, mint… the list goes on.
However, only 30 tons per 40 hectares of perfume flowers are produced in Grasse today. To support cultivation for the future, the Maison Christian Dior entered into exclusive partnerships ten year ago, firstly with the local estate “Domaine de Manon”, then with the “Clos de Callian”, from where Christian Dior has committed to purchasing its entire crop. Louis Vuitton will similarly form partnerships with young producers.
Lastly, in addition to the courses offered in various establishments throughout the region, the two Master-Perfumers welcome apprentices from Grasse and the local area to Les Fontaines Parfumées as a means of introducing them to the art of creativity. In so doing they maintain the transfer of knowledge from master to disciple, a tradition from which they themselves were beneficiaries.