I recently spent a lovely morning at the headquarters of Nana. M, a new French perfume house situated in the hills of Grasse. Fiona Tiberi, the Product Manager was the perfect host and patiently introduced me to the collection of eight perfumes. Céline Ripert is the founder of the brand who decided after twenty years in the industry that it was time to create a line she could call her own. Céline is a perfumer at Mane and the nose behind Reminiscence‘s Sea REM.
Céline Ripert and Fiona Tiberi
Fiona is also Céline’s cousin, so the family ties run deep in true Grassois style. How did the name of the house come about? Well ‘Nana’ in French refers to a group of women yet also alludes to the names of Céline’s children. For me however ‘Nana’ is what my children call their grandmother. So quite different associations may arise depending on your interpretative lens, however I’m happy to stick with the French meaning.
There are eight fragrances in the line and I asked Fiona why they released so many at one time. Wouldn’t it be better to slowly introduce the perfumes, say three at a time? She replied that informal product testing revealed no clear favourites and that each scent had its admirers so the decision was made to launch them all at once.
Interestingly the range is developed with females in mind rather than the usual unisex positioning, although Rêve Royal and Rêve Erotique are considered the more masculine leaning perfumes in the collection. The Nana. M perfume signature is an abundance of French elegance and style modernised with creative flair. They are well suited to those with classical tastes who are interested in further exploration. All perfumes are in an EDP concentration. Of course Céline is in the enviable position of having access to top notch materials from Mane for her perfume line.
The beautiful hand blown glass bottles (by Christophe Saba from nearby Biot) are a stand out feature of the line and look far better in person than in the photographs. They are very heavy, resembling a paper weight and each bottle is a lovely art work in itself. A traditional pouf accessorises the look. Note there is a mechanism that ensures the bottle is tightly sealed so the perfume will not evaporate. You won’t want to throw this bottle out when you’ve finished the perfume. They really are absolutely divine.
Here is a quick run down of the perfumes in the collection along with my favourites in the collection.
My Three Favourites :
Rêve Fou : An ambered perfume made bold with a raspberry liquor accord. The base feels traditional but the raspberry and floral heart lifts the perfume and provides a level of comfort. There is also a slightly salty aspect to the perfume that provides an interesting counterpoint. This is one of those slightly off beat fragrances that somehow works despite the unusual way it works on skin.
Rêve Romantique : A delightful jasmine and mimosa pairing evoke a beautiful summer’s day, while cocoa and apricot skew this perfume gourmand. It feels youthful and girly and if you like the feminine styled M. Micallef perfumes but find them too full-bodied or sweet, this might be what you’re looking for.
Rêve Erotique : I needed to apply a lot to get the desired effect from this perfume, but this is a musky boozy scent with a dash of rum and an exotic edge.
Other Perfumes In The Range
Poudre de Rêve : The traditional French pairing of rose and iris along with heliotrope delivers a light but distinct feminine aura with a vintage feel. The base is warmer and rounds the perfume out nicely.
Une Île, Un Rêve : A tuberose with an aromatic leaning that steers towards the rugged outdoors.
Rêve Royal : The leather and woods option. A floral nuance to the leather combined with a honeyed aspect makes for a robust and tenacious perfume.
Rêve Piquant : Light in character, Rêve Piquant opens with a citrus melange and a squeeze of grapefruit (of the non sweaty variety) and lemon. There’s gingered spiciness here too but it’s all too fleeting on my skin.
Rêve De Sensualite : A quirky lavender warmed by musks and patchouli.
Nana. M also offers two hour workshops with up to six people at a time, showcasing raw materials and synthetics used in the creation of the perfumes. The history of perfume in Grasse and the olfactive families are also discussed. The courses are led by Céline and so you have the opportunity to learn from an actual perfumer. Plus you’ll be able to ask as many questions as you can!
Thanks to Fiona for her time and hospitality.
For where to purchase : Please see the Nana. M website for further details. A miniature sample set of all eight perfumes in a 4ml size is available for 32 Euro. The 50ml bottles of perfume are 185 Euro.
Note : All images by Megan In Sainte Maxime taken at the Nana. M in the Grasse showroom, except the photo of Céline Ripert from LinkedIn.
Disclosure : Samples provided by Nana. M from the showroom at my visit. Opinions my own.