I'll be curious to hear your take on the Opus, in particular II and III that I liked from a test stripe (quick sniff).
Well, today, I decided to pop in there and have a look after work. I was pleasantly surprised at the whole set-up - lots of pastels, light and green/grey hues that combined modernity with subtle hints traditional Arabic interior design. Baskets of dried fruits and flowers adorned most of the dark wooden cabinets and glass surfaces, complimenting the Amouage bottles that were littered around the two-room (but open-plan) store.
I spent most of my time talking to a nice SA by the name of Simon. We actually met before, several months ago, when he was working in the perfume section of Fortnum & Mason. He's a very down-to-earth person with loads of passion and enthusiasm. His customer service was impeccable, to say the least.
Firstly, I tried the three Opus EDPs but I can't say much about them as it's been a very hot and muggy day. However, I was able to snag a sample of each of them and will test them over the next few days.
The store also stocks all the attar oils and, after having difficulty opening nearly all of them, I was informed to be the first ever customer to open and try most of the attars in their store! Out of the bunch, Oud Al Khalood, Al Shamock and Asrar grabbed my attention the most. However, with so little vacant space left on my arms, I think I'll have to return at some point to investigate them, and the others, further.
Oh, here's some exclusive news: Amouage will be releasing a new fragrance, in their regular line, sometime towards the end of this year (Oct/Nov). Once again, there'll be a male and female equivalent available. The name of the new perfume will be 'Memoir' and the bottles will be like the previous releases but in black. Inspired by Swan Lake, the notes are still top secret...
Last edited by Trebor; 25th June 2010 at 08:14 PM.
I'll be curious to hear your take on the Opus, in particular II and III that I liked from a test stripe (quick sniff).
Well, based on my fleeting first impressions, Opus II may be my least favourite. It's also the softest of the three.
Btw, the free gift with every purchase over £50.00 will be a 30ml bottle of Gold (Man or Woman) housed in an attar bottle (a la Tribute).
Thanks for the report Trebor. Wow, I'm jealous.
They really are cranking out these releases pretty quickly aren't they? Nonetheless, I'll be excited to test Memoir.
Many thanks for the info!
Look forward to your impressions of the Opus trio and any thoughts on the attars as and when you get a chance to check them out.
Based on the hot weather we're currently experiencing in London, the conditions for testing these new releases haven't been ideal. However, here are some snippets of opinions that I've formed from wearing them:
This one is currently my favourite of the three. It's performance on the skin is extremely deceptive but in a very good way. The top notes start out rather sharp and almost chaotic before settling down. After an hour, it smells too demure to be tenacious and long-lasting but it actually is (I got at least 12 hours from a couple of sprays).
Funnily enough, although billed as a Chypre, it's probably closer to a typical floral oriental than Opus III. In addition, I felt that Opus I smelt like a richer and complex / deluxe version of Lyric Woman, when I first tested it in the store. After re-reading information about these two creations, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that they were both created by the same perfumer (Daniel Maurel). So, for those who feel that Lyric Woman is the best Amouage offering (like I once did) you'll probably love this one.
This was the most underwhelming for me. It came across as the most masculine of the bunch but it also had the weakest sillage and longevity (3-6 hours but, for now, take this with a pinch of salt). If you love peppery and/or absinthe notes, this one may be for you.
This is my second favourite, with sillage and longevity almost on par with Opus I (at least 9 hours). However, I have to stress one thing about Opus III: if you don't like violets, forget it! The violet note is very dominant for much of the duration, so much that it eventually outstayed its welcome. It's not that I dislike the smell of violets (quite the opposite) but, for quite a while, all I could smell was a rather linear and dominant violet note.
Once the violet completely dissipates, the fragrance has nearly reached the end of its journey with only a faint musk and woody drydown remaining, along with slight traces of ambrette and incense.
Last edited by Trebor; 26th June 2010 at 02:06 PM.
Trebor - is the violet note a violet flower (alpha ionone) parma-violet style note or a violet leaf note?
Hirch, I'm afraid my experience of violet notes are not the best but it's slightly sweet and candied (but not too much) and almost devoid of green or earthy facets. Sounds like parma-violet but I can't be sure.
thanks. Ever tried those little circular parma violet sweets? Thats the violet flower note. Green Irish tweed has a violet leaf note.
Thanks for this, Trebor. Lyric Woman is actually something of a favourite so I'm keen to try Opus 1 (well, that, and the other two and the Memoir duo etc.)
On a side note - the Histoires de Parfum Blanc Violette has a slightly powdery vibe like those sweets - violet with a very light cinammon undercurrent sort of thing. Wonder if it's heading in that direction - I'd be interested to see where Amouage are going with this. Thanks again . . .
Thanks Trebor! Interesting. I only own Amouage Lyric Woman and think it is the only really unique and overwhelmingly beautiful to justify the price tag for me I'm curious about the Opus I then. I only quickly sniffed the test stripe (and I probably wasn't even meant to do that from the look the representative of the importing company had on her face ). Opus III had that mimosa/acacia note (on the test strip) that I found so catchy.
Well, earlier today, it was officially confirmed that I am the first person in the world to have purchased a bottle from The Library Collection (it's on sale, in London, a few days earlier than the rest of the world). Wow!
And my purchase? Opus I
Last edited by Trebor; 27th June 2010 at 12:03 AM.
Wow, I haven't gotten this lathered up by a thread in a while!
Thanks for the wonderful descriptions of the Attars!
I am excited about Memoire in black. Swan Lake the ballet I assume! One of my FAVORITE things.
I cannot go personally until September, but I am imploring a friend to go there post haste and at the very least spend enough to get the free Gold (For me? Because I introduced you to Amouage? Oh, thank you!) and take pictures.
I just want to stress that Opus I and Lyric Woman are both distinctive enough to own in the same wardrobe. However, the more I smell Opus I the more it appears to have taken elements from both Lyric Woman and Ubar (reformulated), but is richer, juicier and more unisex. As much as I admired Lyric Woman, subsequent wearings revealed a certain hollowness to the spicy, milky rose composition (also, its longevity could have been a lot better). With Opus I, I'm not getting that at all - it smells more three-dimensional, substantial and complete.
Last edited by Trebor; 27th June 2010 at 01:11 AM.
Last edited by gupts; 27th June 2010 at 02:32 AM.
Yes, you mentioned Lyric Woman's downside... longevity is moderate on skin (I always spray on fabric, too). Opus I sounds better and better then
I hope it was a 50 % off as world's first customer? *LOL*
Is the free Gold a London only thing, I am wondering?
Last edited by Larimar; 27th June 2010 at 07:58 AM.
Do they have Homage? Do they ship internationally? Thanks for your time.
Harrods and Selfridges both have Homage in their webstores
Just a note to say that although they were only advertising the free 30 ml Gold giveaway for the first two days, they are apparently still doing it.
My friend got one today!
For those interested, here are some pictures of the London shop interior. It looks quite homey.
Wow, great shots! Quite different from the Oman store.
Also thanks for those reviews. I was looking forward to try opus II but with that kind of longevity there's no way I'd buy it.
It looks great, but a bit more mixed-up than the Oman store.
I am so glad to hear of the relative "weakness" of Opus II. I recall Trebor having longevity issues with a number of Amouages that last 15-20+ hours on me, and hence I'm inclined to think that if Opus II really is weaker, well, it may last a more reasonable 8-10 on me, which is far more to my tastes.
Thanks for the descriptions, Trebor. Did you get any of the bay leaf in Opus II? Any cinnamon?
Also, from the sounds of it, Opus III may share some similarities with Reflection Man. What do you think?
This time round, I think Opus I and III are definitely worth the money, in all departments. However, Opus I wins, hands down, in the sillage department - it's substantial but not overwhelming or cloying.
SculptureOfSoul, I have to be honest here - I really didn't give Opus II much of a chance, to be honest. It was the only one of the three that smelt uninspired and generic. Besides, last weekend was quite hectic for me. However, there was definitely cinnamon in there and its overall composition smelt almost like a softer version of Serge Noire. As for Reflection Man, I've never smelt this one so I can't really say.
As an interior designer, that was my thought exactly. I thought 'homey' was a nice way of putting it, But it does not look designed. The industrial grey built-ins look left in place from the former lock-and-key shop in that location. That dated, shabby chic floral-print wall paper is hideous. Are those Ikea cake platters precariously holding perfume bottles? And the centrally located tele... (Did they have the football cup on?) The stacks of fake books here and there truly do impart a suburban American demo house vibe, tho... It's a JUMBLE.
Especially compared to the elegance, timelessness and thematic austerity of the Oman store. One would think the "best" designers would on hand.
Here is the Oman store by contrast. Love the classical rugs and motifs with a touch of Empire Western influence. Perfect.
Last edited by Hillaire; 1st July 2010 at 09:53 PM.
Thanks a bunch, Oslo - I knew about Raffy caring the Amouage line... I was initially interested in the London option because of the price difference... and to tell you the truth, I did like Homage quite a bit... However, after having been treated like c*** by certain Amouage representatives - they could barely (or not) contain their snottiness - I think I'll just stick to other high-end brands (there are so many of them nowadays... and so many of them, compared to say 1995, are really good), where I like both the products and the customer service isn't atrocious.
It does look very ecclectic as opposed to the suggested crack house chic . Im sure I will pop in before too long
Reflection Man has an appealing sandalwood drydown but it ultimately smells like expensive 'alpine fresh' laundry detergent with a hint of sandalwood. Opus III, on the other hand, is primarily about violets with a fuller and richer olfactory delivery - this is no fresh scent! In addition, the sandalwood isn't as prominent in Opus III as it is in Reflection Man.
Reflection Man smells like a high quality designer scent, while Opus III smells undoubtedly niche...
Last edited by Trebor; 1st July 2010 at 11:25 PM.
Thanks for the comparison Trebor.
I generally agree that Reflection Man smells like a high quality designer scent - there's just some really interesting iris/jasmine/patchouli/sandalwood camphory thing going on during the drydown that I absolutely LOVE. It smells a tad bit medicinal and woody and sweet and remains enigmatic to my nose, despite having smelled it countless times I can't unravel what it is that I am smelling and that keeps me coming back for more. I think that with a few more wearings you'd see more of the subtleties woven into the scent and it would register as a bit more than alpine fresh laundry detergent. I know at first the scent seemed ultra-linear to me, and I think that was because a certain rarely used aromachemical is present in a high dose and it took my nose a while to 'smell around' that chemical and register the rest of the scent. Luckily, I loved the scent when it seemed wholly linear and love it even more now that I can smell the rest of the scent. I'm curious, what was the longevity of Reflection Man for you?
Anyhow, thanks again for the comparison. The fact that they aren't very similar actually has me far more interested in Opus III. I don't have any niche violet oriented scents as of now.
As for longevity, it's pretty good on me (at least 8 hours) but its sillage dies down considerably after the first 2-3 hours. However, there is something sensual about the sandalwood drydown that redeems the overall composition. Personally, I can't see myself owning a bottle but most certainly a decant (just to get better acquainted with it). It's definitely worth a 'neutral' rating, though.
Last edited by Trebor; 2nd July 2010 at 10:17 AM.
On a more general note, when a London enterprise ships a fragrance out of the E. U., do they automatically "discount" the fragrance with the VAT amount out-of-EU customers are not supposed to pay? Thanks.