When talking about iconic perfumes, most people immediately have these images of Chanel No 5 and Shalimar spring to mind, or can’t help but think about Thierry Mugler’s Angel or Jean Paul Gaultier’s Classique perfectly curved bottle. My thoughts however turn to one image only, that breathtakingly classy (and classic) statuesque packaging of the original Acqua Di Parma Colonia. Intense, bright yellow like the afternoon sun in the Italian skies, black, sturdy yet refined lettering and a bottle exuding the same impeccable elegance as the scent itself. A true classic!
No classic would be complete without having inspired a family of related fragrances, a kinship of sorts, and the Colonia was followed in it’s footsteps by the other fragrances of the Colonia Ingredients family, ie Colonia Intensa, Colonia Oud, Colonia Essenza and Colonia Leather. Latest addition is the Acqua Di Parma Colonia Ambra, a fragrantic embodiment of the leather roots of the brands setting off y from Venice to discover the scents of The Silk Road. Stepping away from the leather-y notes that support the freshness of the previous scents, this perfume goes about things differently.
As with most Acqua Di Parma fragrances, the Colonia Ambra first offers notes of citrus, orange and bergamot for a zesty start, but soon makes way for the warmth of rose, patchouli and cedar wood. Instead of drying down into a soft, powdery finish, the scent heats up even more thanks to the sheer sensuality of the star ingredient, pure ambergris. Supported by vanilla and sandalwood, it momentarily tethers on the brink of becoming too much, before exuding just the right amount of depth. On me, it evolves in phases, so that I get a long kick of the Italian citrus notes before my nose takes me away from Venice and deep into the spice treasuries of ancient times. Unlike other heady, spiced fragrances, this is not one to be pigeonholed as a clear male of female fragrance, it has this unisex quality that both men and women love. The intensity and concentration of the cologne means that it lasts extremely long, even on my skin it lingers for more than 12 hours. Who needs a man to keep warm?