L’Artisan Parfumeur Navegar : Fragrance Review

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Seuratchannelgravelines

Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.

L’Artisan Parfumeur Navegar is a scent of stones, shells and driftwood collected on the beach. The woody dryness almost makes me feel sand grains scratching my skin, and as the composition begins its panoramic unfolding, I notice a touch of salty freshness, which provides an interesting counterpoint to the spices and woods comprising this Olivia Giacobetti’s creation for L’Artisan Parfumeur. …

This imaginary beach is a deserted one–just as the sandy dunes slowly descend into the dusky mist in the evening, the citrus shimmer of Navegar’s top notes fades into the raw silk warmth of woods. The luminosity of Navegar’s woody accord is accented by the spices, from the resinous dryness of pepper to the pungent bite of ginger. The lovers of Olivia Giacobetti will find much to enjoy about this L’Artisan—wistful aura, gauzy treatment of woods and caressing whisper of spices. On the other hand, this ethereal quality might disappoint those who prefer their spices fiery.

Although Navegar has been among my favorites ever since it came out in 1998, these days I seem to prefer either Hermès Poivre Samarcande (2004) or its earlier forebear Cartier Déclaration (1998) for a spicy wood theme in light of the fact that these compositions offer more tenacity and sillage. Likewise, a more recent creation, Escentric01 by Escentric Molecules, offers another very enjoyable treatment of the peppery-woody accord. Yet, Navegar remains for me an object of beauty that I cannot but admire, both from the technical and artistic standpoints. It is a perfume, with which to fall into a reverie.

Navegar features notes of red pepper, ginger, lime, absolute rum, black pepper, incense, star anise, juniper, cedar wood, guaiac wood. L’Artisan Parfumeur fragrances are available at Aedes, Barneys New York, Beautycafe, Bergdorf Goodman, Bluemercury, Luckyscent, Neiman Marcus, Saks 5th Avenue, and Theperfumeshoppe.

Painting: Georges Seurat. The Channel of Gravelines, Evening. 1890. Oil on canvas. The Museum of Modern Arts, New York. From abcgallery .

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18 Comments

  • k-amber: Victoria,

    What is a nice surprize! I am wearing Navegar today. It is a refreshing and romantic secent. I have most her creations for L’Artisan and this one is a perfect summer fragrance I am happy to wear, as it is very muggy.

    My another fav is Idle de Lubin for winter. I am a huge fan of her together with Jean-Claude Ellena. Thank you for the review.

    Kaori June 16, 2006 at 2:28am Reply

  • helg: Hi Vic! (thanks on the Tea recs btw)

    I like Navegar very much myslef and it’s typical Giacobetti in its unfolding : watery ambiance without the piercing ozone note of Calone. I don’t really know if she does use Calone in there, but the effect is nothing like it.(En Passant on the other hand was not to my liking, because I imagined a lusher lilac, dewy but not cucumbery…LOL)

    The spices are very lightly done in Navegar and I can see the similarities with Declaration and Poivre Samarkande.It makes for a lovely summer scent. Thanks for reminding us. June 16, 2006 at 5:31am Reply

  • Marina: You make it sound so romantic…desrted beach…the lemming is born. June 16, 2006 at 9:37am Reply

  • Ina: I feel like I’ve never given Navegar a fair try. Must remedy this soon. June 16, 2006 at 1:17pm Reply

  • Robin: LOL — good, you’ve moved on to the sweaty JCE scents and left all the Navegar for me 🙂 June 16, 2006 at 2:29pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Kaori, yesterday we had a very humid weather as well, therefore Navegar was perfect. Unlike other JCE’s fragrances I mentioned, it has a touch of freshness, which is very appealing. June 16, 2006 at 5:06pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: E, it is definitely a great summer fragrance, and I just love the pepper-cedarwood combination. Her now discontinued IUNX fragrance, L’Ether, was another great cedarwood composition. Unfortunately, I have only a little bit left. June 16, 2006 at 5:10pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: M, it is definitely romantic to me. Much more gentle than Poivre Samarcande. June 16, 2006 at 5:11pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Ina, I would definitely recommend it, especially if you like other fragrances I mentioned above. June 16, 2006 at 5:12pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: R, do not build up your hopes! 🙂 I still plan on keeping Navegar around. June 16, 2006 at 5:13pm Reply

  • Diane: Ah, what a lovely image. I have never tried this one. Wish I could go to the L’Artisan Soho boutique soon… with you! June 16, 2006 at 8:57pm Reply

  • k-amber: Victoria,

    I heard a rumor INUX butique will be closed, which is true?? I have only several samples but some of them are nice, Splash Forte, through they don’t have staying powers.
    Kaori June 16, 2006 at 9:20pm Reply

  • Judith: Well, I do like Navegar, although I haven’t worn it recently. Your review is reminding me to do so. It is also interesting me in Escentric 01, which I have never tried. . . Must do so at Barneys (I think they have it, no?) June 17, 2006 at 6:54pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: D, I would love that too. Navegar is beautiful, and as Robin points out, it might be easier to wear the others I mentioned. June 18, 2006 at 10:03pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Kaori, they have closed already. My favourite fragrance was L’Ether, and while I liked the others, they were more about the idea of a scent rather than substantial perfumes. It was a great concept though. June 18, 2006 at 10:04pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Judith, Escentric 01 is very easy to wear, although I find it a little bit too linear. Nevertheless, the idea is similar to Navegar. June 18, 2006 at 10:04pm Reply

  • k-amber: Victria,

    I did not know the butique was closed. Thank you for the info as always.

    Kaori June 19, 2006 at 4:08am Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Kaori, my pleasure, although I am sorry to bring these sad news. June 19, 2006 at 12:52pm Reply

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