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Marie Antoinette's $900 Perfume

Marie Antoinette's $900 Perfume

Move over, Clive Christian—you've got company in the ranks of priciest perfumes.

Yesterday, FabSugar and I went to an event previewing an upcoming Marie Antoinette exhibition at San Francisco's Legion of Honor. It was there that I was able to smell Marie Antoinette Sillage de la Reine, a luxurious fragrance that costs $900 for 25ml.

Marie Antoinette Sillage de la Reine was created by French perfume maker Francis Kurkdjian, who recreated Marie Antoinette's signature fragrance. In that sense, it's a ghost of a perfume, but the scent is anything but faint. To see what went inside this limited-edition perfume, read more

Kurkdjian based his work on A Scented Palace: The Secret History of Marie-Antoinette’s Perfumer by Elizabeth Feydeau. The book explores the notes of the queen's Versailles perfumer, and from this information Kurkdjian was able to recreate her beloved scent.

The fragrance is entirely natural, which is why it was initially a bit strong for Fab and me. But it does smell very regal—as it should, of course. It contains rose, iris, cut jasmine, tuberose and orange blossom. Woody touches of cedar and sandalwood are also present, with the sandalwood more fragrant to my nose than the cedar. Additionally, it has notes of Tonkin musk (that's, um, the content of Himalayan goats' glands) and grey amber.

It was such a wonderful treat to smell such a rare fragrance, and it did transport me into another time (if only for a moment). If you are the kind of high roller who wants to smell like a queen, you'll be able to purchase Marie Antoinette Sillage de la Reine this fall from the de Young/Legion of Honor Museum Store in San Francisco. Proceeds from the perfume's sale will help restore an area used by Marie-Antoinette at Versailles.

Finally, if you think $900 is expensive, wait until you hear how much the "prestige" edition cost. Decanted into a Baccarat crystal container, and limited to only 10 worldwide, it sells abroad for 8,000 euros—just over $11,000. In contrast, $900 is a bargain, eh?

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