The holidays are about simple pleasures. I recently expressed that sentiment with a straight face to a friend — after shouting with glee: “Cire Trudon makes room sprays now!” My friend read the Cire Trudon Les Parfums d’Intérieur PR announcement and said: “I get the ‘pleasure’ part, Kevin, but what’s so ‘simple’ about a $142 room spray?” Fair enough.
Cire Trudon’s new room sprays come in its most popular candle fragrances: Roi Soleil, Spiritus Sancti, Abd El Kader, Ernesto, and Nazareth. Since one of my favorite churches, Santo Spirito in Florence, is thousands of miles away, I opted for the Cire Trudon fragrance that might help me conjure its atmosphere this Christmas (provided I close my eyes, get my imagination in high gear, and queue Monteverdi, Cavalli and Albinoni on the CD player); I chose Spiritus Sancti.
Spiritus Sancti smells like “classic” church incense…a mix of myrrh, benzoin (not too vanillic or powdery) and severe labdanum; it starts off “cold” and almost “menacing” before becoming warm and smoky. As Spiritus Sancti fades, its ‘smoke’ decreases and is replaced by an after-burn aroma of charred woods. Many people I let smell this fragrance cried: “Church!” I enjoy the scent of church incense and whenever it’s sold at cathedrals I visit, I buy some. (Incense-haters will not like Spiritus Sancti.)
All the Cire Trudon room sprays smell great and are made with high-quality ingredients; I prefer them to many perfumes I’ve sampled this autumn. In fact, I wore Spiritus Sancti on my person (it’s long lasting but a bit “flat” on skin). Sprayed into the air — as it’s meant to be — Spiritus Sancti’s fragrance blooms and lingers for hours.
My house is not the size of a cathedral and the only ‘services’ I perform there involve food and drink, and hungry “pilgrims” no greater in number than 15, so I don’t need 375 ml (12.7 oz) of Spiritus Sancti room spray. I could spritz myself and my house, every nook, every day, and (almost) never use up such a huge bottle of fragrance; and if I love a scent, as I do Spiritus Sancti, I don’t want to overuse it.
Cire Trudon room sprays come in beautiful dark-green glass flacons that are equipped with bulb atomizers (pretty, yes, but bulb atomizers are prone to leaks and allow air to reach the fragrance — and cut short its shelf life). I hope Cire Trudon will eventually make smaller sizes of its room sprays (I’d be happy with 100 ml bottles) and replace the bulb atomizers with regular spray nozzles. Until then, I’m sticking with the Cire Trudon candles.
Spiritus Sancti (375 ml/$142) is available at Cire Trudon’s New York boutique or at Aedes.