Kilian: luxury fragrance in clever packaging

I love what the young perfume brand, Kilian is doing with fragrance and packaging right now. Combining experimental fragrance with multi-tasking accessories and an eco-consciousness, Kilian Hennessy’s (of the Hennessy cognac family) current scents come in refillable spray bottles of eau de parfum (£160) that are then packaged in white glossy cases. The cases double as a micro clutch (the designs are based on old Van Cleef & Arpels cigarette cases and will accommodate your average Samsung super-phone with ease) and not surprisingly, with their golden snake adornment, they’re a big hit with glamour-loving Middle Eastern customers. Additionally, Kilian also has a sideline in bigger minaudiers – think deco-style lacquered Plexiglas, finished in luxe shagreen and Swarovski crytals.

I also love the travel sprays and in particular, the travel sets (from £82), consisting of a beautiful decorative metal bottle, plus four 30ml refills. This is frankly wasted if you save it for travel though, I would want to carry it everywhere. Kilian releases his fragrances in collections. I have been trying In The Garden Of Good And Evil, a trio of three unexpected scents of which my favourite, Good Girl Gone Bad is in turn gently fruity then richly floral, but never heavy. There’s also a successful line of oud fragrances and the newest scent, Flower of Immortality (due next month), will come in a lockable lacquered box.

Kilian described his strategy to me when we met up a few weeks ago and it was an interesting one. He sees fragrance now where the denim market was fifteen years ago. “People wouldn’t have dreamt of paying over £100 for a pair of jeans but now they’ll pay £300. It’s about the whole package.” You know what? I think he’s right.

You can buy Kilian exclusively in the UK at Harvey Nichols, or internationally from

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