Saturday, October 8, 2011

Guerlain Le Bolshoi 2011 Limited edition & Les Voyages Olfactifs 04 London: new fragrances

Le Bolshoi 2011 Edition Limitee is the new limited edition perfume (set to circulate in only 400 bottles retailing for $570) to be released on October 27th, a day before the official opening of the historical Main Stage of the Bolshoi theater. As the equally historical house of Guerlain is one of sponsors in the renovating, the Le Bolshoi 2011 fragrance, accredited (surprisingly!) to Jean-Paul Guerlain, will launch to thus celebrate the event. The limited edition bottle bears a label with the front of the Bolshoi theater on it.

Le Bolshoi 2011 by Guerlain comprises the following fragrant notes:
top: bergamot, bitter orange, petitgrain, neroli
heart: jasmine, violet, orange blossom, ylang-ylang
base: musk, tonka bean, vanilla and incense

Le Bolshoi is launching exclusively in Russia (not even Paris is supposed to have bottles, though I doubt there won't be a couple for reference or display or something...) and is rumoured to be a recalibration of Les Secrets de Sophie previous fragrance according to independent sources.

Let's not forget that Guerlain has also just issued the 4th installment in their scented travelogue series: Les Voyages Olfactifs, 04 London.  The fragrance is introduced with the tag line "Guerlain reveals the atmosphere of afternoon tea with the freshness of rhubarbe" and the perfume puts the rose-rhubard-grapefruit accord within a semi-oriental composition. Fragrance notes include bergamot, grapefruit, rhubarb, violet, rose essential oil, rose absolute, and boiled sweets.
The bottles have been redesigned with a cityscape image visible on their glass front, each depicting landmarks of each respective city, as you can see below.

photo via Wim Janssens


  1. I must confess that I'd love to try the Bolshoi scent. But as for the London: first impression is that it's very wishy-washy. Not much to attract the nose.

  2. how lovely! I hope the juice is too

  3. Anonymous22:56

    Looks like the Voyages bottles have much improved! They also look smaller -- are they and is there a corresponding price drop? Inquiring minds want to know ...

    -- Nikk

  4. As a true Guerlain o phile, I would love to smell this, but alas, another perfume far out of my price range. The bottle is lovely but I think unsuspecting buyers will not be very happy when their expensive juice evaporates right out of that silly puff atomizer!

  5. Must. Have. (I'm a russophile somewhere deep inside.) And damn I'll decant the perfume into some normal bottle if some normal stopper is not offered, I hate the puff atomizers.

  6. D,

    I wonder how the Bolshoi will go saleswise: I predict people doing splits, though it's a miserly thought. Personally, and mark my words down, I predict there will be stock left of Le Bolshoi in the years to come, being re-issued as Les Ballets Russes -or something similar from the Guerlain archives in the name- and then entering one of the boutique's sub-lines. ;/

    London dull? Quelle hubris! ;-D

  7. K,

    those old style bottles are really cute in a very deco way, aren't they.

  8. N,

    let it be said that the new bottles have all dropped Paris from their name (apart from the one referencing Paris obviously!) opting to leave just the referencing city for ease of communication between SA and customer
    (Imagine what confusion there must have before: "Hello, I'd like to see the travel edition called Paris". "Oh great, which one?" "Gosh, are there more than one?" etc etc)
    I believe the bottles hold 75ml. Were they bigger before? I don't think so. (plus nothing gets any cheaper...alas!)

  9. Stelma,

    I think there will be a regular cap provided as well (all other "with bulb option" Guerlains have one). Lots of people however don't know that bulb atomisers leave lots of air to come into contact with the perfume and that would be a heart-breaking moment if they find out the hard way.

  10. L,

    they're not practical, indeed. But surely they will provide a regular cap. I think it's the bulb which is optional (it is for most others).
    Looks like a fine specimen for your eclectic collection!

  11. Helg, the right word is messy, not eclectic.
    I gotta work harder, this hobby is getting expensive:D

  12. Anonymous22:44

    The old Voyages bottles had the city name and number but did not have an image of the city or the name in the local language. Also, they were huge (245 ml), cylindrical, and I believe they were EDT, explaining the size.

    The change in name you report is accompanied by a big change in appearance -- prettier detailing and a shape more in keeping with the other rectangular Exclusif bottles. If they are 75 ml now, will wait for the pricing I guess? Doubt they could sell for the same if they were that much smaller. Unless they are more concentrated, which would defeat the point of the line which is lighter.

    Actually now that I look at the pic again, I'm thinking that they might be big honkin' flacons because that ridged cap looks like a splash cap. Still 245 mls -- could that be?

  13. Anonymous22:45

    (Sorry, the comment above was mine -- Nikk)

  14. Nikk,

    thanks! So big, eh? I didn't know that. They never "pulled" me to be honest.
    I will update with more official info as soon as that info lands on my lap.

  15. I heard from the grapevine that Le Bolshoï is the same fragrance as Les Secrets de Sophie.... anyone able to comment?

  16. L,

    how very interesting! I wouldn't put it past them, assuming Sophie doesn't circulate any more (does it?). Will get to my contact and let you know.

  17. Reverting to the thread to say that all sources say that Bolshoi is for the Russian market only and is a recalibration of Secrets de Sophie. I doubt that Paris won't get a bottle or two though for loyal customers with a certain way of asking.
    [But not New York. As of yet, at the very least. ]


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