The fourth value of the year is a high point. To sum it up briefly: the Grand Tour. An art form, a world unto itself. A window onto other places, like the Maison’s oval. A re-engagement with the tradition of the tour whose name it borrows – a journey that was, from the 16th century onwards, an initiation, an education, an artistic experience, sending enlightened young people off to roam Europe and acquire first-hand knowledge of other cultures – this latter-day Grand Tour offers fresh horizons. A contemporary echo of the history of diptyque and its trio of founders, it speaks of the appetite for travel, both real and imaginary, and for discovering the new and the different, that characterises the Maison, nourishing its point of view, its curiosity and its imagination and reappearing in its fragrances and objects.
Engaging all our senses, diptyque transports us on a Grand Tour from Occident to Orient. This exclusive collection revisits and spotlights five major destinations that have served as inspiration to the Maison: Paris, Venice, Milies, Kyoto and Byblos, cities dreamed of, imagined or appreciated by travelling artists…
Perfumer: Olivia Giacobetti
Olfaction: Essence of myrrh, Old books accord, Wood patina accord and Paris stone accord
It all begins in Paris at kilometre zero, the starting point from which all road distances in France are measured, on the forecourt of Notre-Dame-de-Paris – not far from 34 boulevard Saint-Germain, the historic cradle of diptyque – indicated on the ground by a compass rose that is still there today. This rose decorates the oval of the 190g candle, which was conceived as a tribute to the French capital city. The colour, scent and design all hark back to Paris. The verdigris hue recalls the booksellers’ stands in St Germain-des-Prés. The fragrance, developed by Olivia Giacobetti, evokes that of a stroll along the quays of the Seine – the weeping willows lining its banks, the polished wood scents of the antique stores along with those of the Parisian cobblestones and of the pages of antiquarian books. Inspired by an old display stand for diptyque candles, the sculpted black wood lid is a nod to the history of the Maison, concluding this initial olfactory, cultural and historic stopover.
Perfumer: Cécile Matton
Olfaction: Basil, Green bell pepper, Vetiver and Tomato
Our odyssey of the senses continues on to Italy. To be precise, Venice, visited regularly by the founders, charmed by its languid mystery and shifting colours. In 2021, the Tour pauses to take in a green Venice. The vegetable gardens of the Serenissima lagoon, Mediterranean breeze and herbal scents in the early morning freshness – the fragrance of earth mingling with that of bell peppers, tomatoes and citrus fruits. A set containing three travel-size bottles of this new Venice-themed perfume created by Cécile Matton, plus a carrying pouch specially decorated with a picture from the archives of the Maison.
Perfumer: Olivier Pescheux
Olfaction: Immortelle absolute, Ambroxan, Fig wood accord, Cypress
We sail on towards Milies in Greece, on Mount Pelion – for four years the adoptive second home and favoured holiday destination for the founders of diptyque. The unforgettable fragrance of the fig tree fields bordered with cypress trees, giving way to the scent of immortelle bushes along the road leading to the sea, 8 km away… A memory captured by Olivier Pescheux in a scented oval, engraved and nested in a ceramic oval in the white and blue colours of the sea and the spray, topped with a tassel and a string of marble beads inspired by local folklore and the necklaces of Christiane MontadreGautrot. To put it another way, a little bit of Greece to take home with you, to perfume and decorate the small spaces in your home.
Perfumer: Alexandra Carlin
Olfaction: Incense, Turkish rose, Vetiver, Beetroot accord
Ten thousand kilometres further East lies a destination never visited but often dreamed of by the trio of founders. A place whose aesthetic has often served as a source of inspiration for the Maison: Japan, and more specifically Kyoto, city of art and of history, cradle of ikebana. The journey pauses here to allow time for reflection, reproducing the codes of this age-old floral art form in a perfume that strikes a subtle balance between incense, rose and vetiver, created by Alexandra Carlin to echo the triptych of sky, heart and earth. The bottle comes wrapped according to the furoshiki technique in a fabric bearing a print of the Sarayi floral motif created by the founders, and is made of tinted glass in a matching rose-purple hue.
Perfumer: Fabrice Pellegrin
Olfaction: Coffee, Atlas cedar, White musks, Essence of cardamom
Rounding off the tour, we approach the ancient coastal city of Byblos, the oldest port in the world and one of the stops on the route to the Orient travelled by Yves and Desmond during the 1960s. The port is evoked by the scents – reworked for the occasion by Fabrice Pellegrin – of the cardamom coffee served in the Ottoman souks. Recalling the smoke from this traditional beverage, the 300g candle comes in a vessel decorated with grey and sandy-coloured wisps. The vessel is produced using the ceramic mixedclay technique, making each one unique. It features a relief illustration depicting this Levantine port of call: a harbour landscape, together with the alleyways of the town market.
Exploring the world and collecting its treasures, the Grand Tour is a present-day invitation to embark on a unique cultural journey that fully honours the spirit of the Maison and the aesthetic eye of the creators who founded it.
Just like the ports it celebrates, this limited-edition collection is as diverse as the products it contains. These 5 creations share a common thread, which runs across each box like a map running from one stop to the next, symbolically linking them all together into one Grand Tour.