The original fragrance Shalimar was first created in 1921, but its story has origins that stretch back over four centuries and are as intoxicating as the fragrance itself.
The story goes that the flowers that grow in the Shalimar Garden in Lahore inspired the perfume. These beautiful gardens were created by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in the 1600s. The very same emperor who commissioned the Taj Mahal, the world’s greatest monument to undying love, for his wife, the Princess Mumtaz Mughal.
These royal gardens are now recognised by UNESCO as a world heritage site, but they have long been a site of moving spiritual stories and poetry.
All of this beauty is really captured by the reinterpretation of this classic perfume. Not only in the exotic bottle, striking as it is, with rightful pride of place on my dresser, but also in the richness of the fragrance.
- The top notes are bergamot, lemon and mandarin.
- The heart notes are jasmine and orange blossom.
- The base notes are Indian vanilla and white musk.
The citrus adds a fresh and sophisticated aspect, which is unusual in most oriental perfumes that tend to be heavier, spicier and muskier. Like all good perfumes the richer base notes linger on the skin for hours after the others have lifted. The warmer vanilla notes temper these sharp citrus scents wonderfully.
The lasting power isn’t as long as I would like, but what is to be expected of an EDT. The sales assistant explained to me that the Shalimar Souffle de Parfum lasts longer than the Pink more floral version Shalimar Cologne.
I would recommend 3-4 sprays, on pressure points, once in the morning and once in the evening in order for the perfume to be fully appreciated. Although, I do prefer it as a daytime perfume.
There’s a reason that this perfume has been going since 1921 and after many hours in many perfumeries I think Shalimar Souffle de Parfum is definitely one of the best modern variations of this classic scent.