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Launched in 2008 by Parfums-Beaute Serge Lutens, El Attarine was inspired by Lutens’ life in Morocco.

El Attarine was named for the Al-Attarine Madrasa in Fez, Morocco. ‘Madrassa’ means religious school in Arabic and ‘attar’ is a distillate of plant materials over a wood base that creates a natural perfume oil that is used in meditation and fragrance.

Al-Attarine is a gorgeous building luxuriously decorated with glazed tile, marble columns and intricately carved wooden arches and cornices. Located across from the spice and perfume market, al-Attarine is the madrasa of perfumers.

The idea of a fragrance inspired by a school for perfumers is what first attracted me to El Attarine, but the rich, golden smell of it that keeps me wearing it.

It opens with aldedhydes, crisp and just a little camphourous on me, and note of cool, metallic violet. Surprisingly, the opening is more quiet than expected when compared to some of Lutens other frags. In fact, El Attarine shows restraint throughout the entire composition which gives it a certain delicacy and transparency. A note of sweet, golden honey paired with fresh floral orange blossom is here too and as it progresses Lutens’ signature note of dried fruit – apricots this time – shows up, but it’s not alone. Saffron, bittersweet and earthy and cumin, pungent, anisic and just a little dirty adds a warm spiciness that tempers the dried fruit perfectly. The heart is a blend of florals – I smell rose and jasmine – and immortelle, its maple-syrup, curry aspects held back, and its anisic/honey-like aspects highlighted and echoing the cumin. It all rests on a base of musk, sandalwood and cedarwood.

El Attarine is a sweet, spicy, musky, woody harmonious blend of heavy, rich notes with a drydown that is creamy, transparent and surprisingly light.
To me, it smells like golden, sunlight on a sweet summer’s day.

El Attarine is available only at the Salons Shiseido du Palais Royal in Paris.
Notes: aldehydes, violet, honey, orange blossom, dried apricots, saffron, cumin, rose, jasmine, immortelle, musk, sandalwood and cedarwood.
Type: EdP
Parfumeurs: Serge Lutens and Christopher Sheldrake

Price: $7.00