Armani Prive Rose d’Arabie : Perfume Review


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

Rose is the most representative fragrance note of Eastern style fragrances as it carries many rich symbolic connotations as revealed by Persian poetry and Sufi writings. In traditional perfumery rose was prized for its ability to withstand the considerable heat of distillation, unlike most other fragrance flowers like jasmine, violet, hyacinth and lily. Even today, the rose fragrance is likely to form an indelible impression when visiting any of the Middle Eastern countries—rosewater is customarily sprinkled on guests upon arrival and departure, rose flavor is as likely to be found in a dish of lamb pilaf as it is in sweet sherbets and pastries, and the scent of rose attar fills the air as people prepare for Friday prayers. Therefore, it is not surprising that the third chapter of the Arabian Tales from Armani Privé La Collection des Mille et une Nuits, Rose d’Arabie, takes the shape of an oriental rose.

The rose framed by sweet, balsamic notes, from vanilla and coumarin to amber, sandalwood and patchouli, is a frequent enough theme in the oriental genre. Both the honeyed facets of rose oil and the sharp freshness of synthetic rose alcohols blend well with the opulent and warm accords in that family of fragrances. In the case of Rose d’Arabie, the theme is interpreted as a rich ambery rose. Its bright top notes belie the richness of the composition, which comes mainly from vanilla and amber, with warm, sweet violet further enriching the accord. Patchouli and Cashmeran (a woody-musky raw material of incredible tenacity) offset the sweet heft of the composition and add an element of radiance to the sweet, warm rose.

Though beautifully crafted, the treatment of rose in Rose d’Arabie plays by all the usual oriental fragrance rules. For those who love the full bodied richness of rose in Montale fragrances, it might be a great choice, particularly since Rose d’Arabie lacks the screechy feel of sandalwood synthetics, which made me averse to Montale as of late. Next to by Kilian Rose Oud, however, it fails to impress me. Despite the heavy oud accord, Rose Oud is remarkable for its luminous quality, whereas the heft of Rose d’Arabie persists unmitigated. Compared to Frédéric Malle Une Rose, which is one of the most interesting dark woody roses, it comes across as particularly conventional. Heavy and dark, it is a rose suitable for the Carmen and Scheherezade in us. Beautiful, without doubt, but not original in character.

Other fragrances in the 1001 Nights collection include Ambre d’Orient and Oud Royal.

Armani Privé Rose d’Arabie was created by Firmenich perfumer Marie Salamagne. Rose d’Arabie (fragrance family: floral rose) includes notes of orange flower, saffron, rose, violet, patchouli, amber, vanilla, wood. Armani Privé fragrances are available from Saks5thAvenue, Bergdorf Goodman, Barneys New York.



  • Marina: I am intent now on trying that Rose Oud; you speak so highly of it. December 13, 2010 at 8:09am Reply

  • Victoria: It is excellent! I have not bought a full bottle of perfume in ages, sticking mostly to samples and decants, but I am very tempted to request this one for my Christmas gift. December 13, 2010 at 10:05am Reply

  • Olfactoria: Dear V,
    How would you compare Rose Oud and Une Rose? I have and love Une Rose, so I am wondering whether you think the By Kilian indispensable, since you speak so highly of it. December 13, 2010 at 10:41am Reply

  • Victoria: I was listening to Handel this morning and thought of you! 🙂 As for roses, Une Rose is more of a amber-wood oriental, whereas Rose Oud has a clear, rich rose note set into the animalic, tobacco and sandalwood layered oud accord. It is a very beautiful, intricate composition, while its character is more vivacious, rather than brooding like that of Une Rose. Granted, I love Une Rose too. I think that the two are quite different and would suit different moods. December 13, 2010 at 10:52am Reply

  • Olfactoria: Thank you, I was afraid of that. 😉 So on my wishlist goes Rose Oud!
    Isn’t Handel a great way to start the day? I am almost at the end of mine, but you made me dig out a CD as well, my three year old is now dancing to Brandenburg 6. 🙂 December 13, 2010 at 11:38am Reply

  • Victoria: Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos, Brahms valses, anything Glinka, Dvorak–this is what I listen first thing in the morning whenever I need an extra boost of positive energy. And now you’ve reminded me of Handel. This is why I missed blogging during my hiatus, for this daily inspiration and exchange of ideas, perfume related and otherwise.

    Whenever I find that I have nothing to add to my wishlist, I become depressed. 🙂 December 13, 2010 at 12:43pm Reply

  • Sveta: Sounds perfect to me, but you know that I am a huge fan of Armani Prive line. I also started liking rose a lot lately. Cannot wait for our Saks to get it! December 14, 2010 at 9:51am Reply

  • Victoria: Sveta, did you already try the new Frederic Malle Portrait of a Lady. If you like roses in the oriental genre, you might enjoy that one. December 14, 2010 at 2:36pm Reply

  • Ali Al-Abdulla: Hi,I have question please..
    From where I can get Armani Rose D’Arabie & Alexandrie, because I was looking everywhere in all the shops & all of them they keep saying it is out of stock.

    Ali Al-Abdulla March 16, 2011 at 7:42pm Reply

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