Created in 2003 to be worn by men and women alike, Annick Goutal Les Nuits d’Hadrien remains one of the most consistent scents in my collection. I always enjoy it from start to finish. For me to say “always” about a scent is nothing to take lightly, for I recycle my samples and decants like a child eats candy. You could say I have a mild case of attention deficit when it comes to fragrance. Therefore, consistently enjoying a scent for years remains an accomplishment in my book and speaks of a marvelously composed fragrance. To continue with my use of absolutes, Les Nuits d’Hadrien is never offensive and always refreshing.
The first burst of fragrance screams green basil and lemon rinds, fresh and bitter at the same time, not quite edible but very refreshing, like a mist of lemon water on a squelching, hot day. Characterizing the heart of the fragrance and warming it up significantly, cumin makes its appearance shortly after the refreshing citrus burst. Other heart notes include cypress and juniper, explaining why I never quite feel as if I’m wearing perfume with this one. Rather, I feel as if I am walking around with a self-attached herbal mister to exhilarate and restore my energy – perfect for the oppressively hot climate where I reside. To balance and soften the aromatic stimulation, vanilla, amber and white musk offer an exquisite dry down which lasts on my skin for the remainder of the day.
Les Nuits d’Hadrien reminds me of a day at the spa. I imagine wrapping myself up in a cozy robe and slippers, sipping cucumber and lemon water and flipping through fashion magazines while waiting for a long session with a professional masseuse. After my massage, I get dressed in a brightly colored bikini, apply suntan lotion and relax by the pool for the remainder of the day. Just when I feel that I am getting too warm from the heat of the sun, I dive into the cool, crisp water for a swim. Finally, after achieving total relaxation, I take a warm shower and don a playful summer dress with flip flops to go to the park on my way home.
This fragrance achieves the perfect balance of refreshing and warm, aromatic and soft, and sweet and spicy. Despite its name and reference to nightfall, it is perfect for daytime wear. I consider it not only bottle worthy but barrel worthy and I reserve it for those days when work and activity require a respite. I find it entirely worth the wait … always …
Annick Goutal Les Nuits d'Hadrien can be found online at beauty.com and in stores at Neiman Marcus. A 1.7 oz. EDT retails for $72 online.
Image sources: aussieperfumes.com and themarkersclub.com