Even though the name Legacy of Petra alone could lead one to expect a new fragrance from the legendary Portraits Collection, which I love so much, the traditional British fragrance house Penhaligon’s takes us on another journey on the Trade Routes with this eau de parfum.
So Petra is not another olfactory protagonist in the ever-growing family tree of the Portraits family (although it occurs to me that I promised you once to compile just such a one, to unravel the quite complex family relationships.), rather Penhaligon’s takes us to the Middle East. Today’s Jordan is our destination, more precisely the ruins of Petra. World famous and of exceptional beauty.
Behind the shades of the sand, the rock city of Petra comes into view. Intricately carved into the rock, ancient wisdoms reveal themselves in this forsaken silence. The future and the past collide, the history of mankind is impressively shown. All of this is overwhelming and yet there are still so many secrets hidden in the desert sands.
Testimony of contemporary history
The ruined city of Petra looks back on an impressive history. Probably built in the 1st millennium BC by the nomadic Nabataeans as their capital, Petra was an important trading centre, as many caravan routes went past the city, which was ideally situated in terms of transport and geography. The Incense Road would be particularly noteworthy here.
In modern times Petra is a popular tourist destination in the Middle East. Through the Siq, a deep and narrow cut gorge, the city of Petra, located in a valley, is entered. The first sight that immediately catches the eye is the famous Khazne al-Firaun treasure house, a burial site, carved directly into the red stone, with its front about 40 meters high. Furthermore, there is a Roman theater and other buildings. However, the historical centre of Petra with the houses of the Nabataeans who lived there at that time is not really recognizable today.
Legacy of Petra – Penhaligon’s
Interestingly, Legacy of Petra by Penhaligon’s is not dedicated to incense at all, even though the Incense Road was of such great importance to the city and the Nabataeans. Instead, the eau de parfum focuses on a variety of spices as well as other ingredients that perfumer Nathalie Gracia-Cetto put together for the Penhaligon’s brand.
Bergamot, green tea, fennel, licorice, myrrh, labdanum (cistus), vanilla, benzoin resin and ambergris are the ingredients of this homage to the rock city of Petra, of which even Lawrence of Arabia raved in the highest terms.
Of course, some readers may object that the British Empire hardly existed at the time of the Nabataeans and that Petra’s heyday as a trading centre was at a time when the Celts still ruled in Great Britain. That’s true, of course. But the British Empire will not have traded with Mesopotamian Babylon either. So Penhaligon’s doesn’t take it too seriously and rather lets itself be inspired by the Trade Routes of the British Empire and the old trade routes in general for all kinds of creations.
Welcome to the olfactory rock city
Legacy of Petra opens with citrusy-harsh bergamot and cool fennel notes, underpinned from the beginning by the characteristic nuances of licorice and balsamic-dark myrrh.
Very warm and spicy is the Eau de Parfum by Penhaligon’s, underpinned by woody-greenish nuances. I also perceive watery green tea that seems to connect the individual fragrance notes. Legacy of Petra appears very round, harmonious and densely woven, in which the chocolaty sweetness of benzoin resin and lovely vanilla show in the further course.
These blend in the most wonderful way with the melange of resinous-balsamic and spicy nuances. The fragrance becomes a little brighter and gradually softer and gentler thanks to velvety warm ambergris and finally fades out very gradually.
Legacy of Petra by Penhaligon’s is a warm and spicy oriental with lush myrrh and licorice involvement and a finish of milk-chocolaty benzoin resin and the finest amber. Fennel and green tea add a surprising coolness and tension to the fragrance and ensure that the eau de parfum does not become too lush and overwhelming. I would classify the presence of the creation as medium. We are not dealing with a highly intense oriental scent here, Legacy of Petra rather practices British gentility and transparency. The durability is excellent. In my eyes, rather a fragrance for the cooler season, but here consistently wearable in the office and everyday life. Friends of the Trade Routes Collection should put this creation on their to-try list anyway, but also all those who prefer spicy-warm and rather dark oriental fragrances. 🙂