Levantium by Penhaligon’s 2014

Hey there Perfume Posse,

Recently I was given this bottle by my mate Nick at Libertine Parfumerie in Australia to use in giveaways. I wore it once during a seasonal showing and was so impressed with other stuff that it didn’t really register. Now though I have grabbed it from the bag, and to be honest I’m surprised Nick put it in. He must have thought I’d really like it……

Levantium by Christian de Provenzano for Penhaligon’s 2014

Levantium Penhaligon`s FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Bergamot, artemisia, saffron, wormwood
Heart: Rose, jasmine, violet, cloves, cardamom, ylang-ylang, peach
Base: Amber, myrrh, guaiac wood, sandalwood, cedar, agarwood (oud), patchouli, musk, vanilla

Levant: Name for the nations on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea : Cyprus, Egypt, Israel, Lebanon, Syria, and Turkey
Levant: A type of leather made from the skins of goats, sheep, or seals, having a pattern of irregular creases
Levant: Leave secretly or hurriedly to avoid paying debts

One word, so many meanings. Don’t you love it? It all comes from raising, or rising like the sun and leaving, or going. Words are like fragrance, sometimes it’s hard to pin down exactly what’s going on.

Levantium Penhaligon`s opera house Sydney PattyJansen PixabayPhoto Stolen Pixabay

Levantium by Penhaligon’s is a total surprise. Not at all what I expect from this cool, calm and collected house of charming but safe fragrances. Levantium has something to say, a story to tell and you need to wear a few spritzes of it to get the whole shebang. Wood, spice, leather, balms and a green herbaceousness open Levantium, not sugared sweet but sweet and smooth that is then overtaken by creamy ylang and a sensual bouquet which keeps interesting and piquant through spicy clove and I get a soft booziness too. The oud accord that they’ve used is subtle and plays through the whole scent as a low background hum. Towards the dry down it’s a woodsy/amber melange. I don’t get stand out notes but a very wearable and attractive wash. Nothing new or surprising but lovely, I think you could easily gift Levantium.

In Australia we have some recreated sea faring ships from our earliest settlers, sometimes you can book a berth for short voyages or on special occasions like Australia Day you can book a day on the boat and get dressed up but with all the mod cons like toilets and a kitchen. It’s luxury reenactment, armchair stuff but fun nevertheless. Perfect if you’re after a very small insight into the size and shape of an old ship of the kind in which these enormous journeys were undertaken. Levantium smells like these ships, a perfectly manicured, shorn of all nastiness, clean and waxed version of a memory. A dream of old time sailing, a hint, a wish.

Nick was right, I love it…..

Levantium Penhaligon`s darling-harbour Sydney PattyJansen PixabayPhoto Stolen Pixabay

Further reading: Chemist In A Bottle and Candy Perfume Boy
Beauty Habit has $160/100ml
First In Fragrance has €195/100ml

Do you love the idea of recreating old time marine experiences in scent? Do you have a marine or nautically inspired fragrance that you love? Tell me in the comments below, I get excited when we chat.

If you thought this was fun or interesting come over to AustralianPerfumeJunkies and say hello there too. We love visitors.
Portia xx

  • Bobbie says:

    All new territory for me, Portia – nautical scents, Penhaligon, and replicas of old ships. I’ll have to find a way to try Levantium to put it all together since I can’t really imagine it.

  • Fazal Cheema says:

    i think fragrances like Rochas Macassar and Morabito Or Black may also remind you of old ships due to that dry wood character and possibly Lutens Chene too

  • tammy says:

    You have such a way of making me want things I know I won’t like! 😛

    • Portia says:

      On NOO Tammy,
      Sorry love. At least you have an inkling of things you may not like. There are so few things that I really don’t like it has become a bit silly.
      Portia xx

  • Ann says:

    Howdy, Portia! Thanks for the lovely review on this; I think Penhaligon’s tends to get overlooked sometimes, not because it isn’t a nice line but it’s just not flashy like some of the others. I will definitely have to give this a go. And I loved the idea of re-creating the old sailing vessels — what a cool voyage that would be! (Thankfully, with all our modern conveniences, of course.)

    • Ann says:

      P.S. Have you guys ever taken one of those tours?

      • Portia says:

        Hi Ann,
        You’re right, they do get a little left out. I wonder if it’s because there is so much new stuff released all the time, new houses, new frags, new everything. It must be hard to keep any older house in the spotlight.
        I will await your verdict when you do try Levantium.
        No, we didn’t have a go yet but I would like to one day, I have been on a moored one back in our bi-centennial year 1988 and it was pretty amazing.
        Portia xx

  • Tara says:

    Portia, we tried Levantium during the Roses evening at Perfume Lovers London and it surprised me too! Very un-Penhaligon’s like – or what you’d expect from them anyway. Liked it very much and still searching for my sample.

    • Portia says:

      Hey Tara!
      Aha! Yes, quite unlike the Penhaligon’s usual fare and really good for it. Interesting that they used it at the Rose lovers evening. I get very little that smells rose-ish to me but I might go and wear it again this weekend, I have been known to overlook the most obvious things because I’m concentrating on other pieces of the puzzle.
      We can spritz it together when I see you. YAY!
      Portia xx