Beyond the Hardware

By Jo Phillips

Once upon a time, a young boy nicknamed W.O. was born in 1888. Walter Owen Bentley went on to become the founder of the car company that carries his name. On the 10th of July 1919, the first car to bear his name was pulled out of New Street Mews, London in 1919. His spirit, freedom and zest for travel, live on way beyond the metal cars, find out more in Beyond the Hardware.

Yet, this man came from a modest start he was one of nine children. When he was only nine years old, he bought a second-hand bicycle and dismantled it, to discover exactly how it worked.

At the age of 14, he cycled 130 miles from London to Norfolk in a single day. He would later describe the joy of independent travel as “one of man’s fundamental longings.”

But his initial real passion lay with trains. He left school at 16 to start an apprenticeship with the Great Northern Railway, eventually achieving his childhood dream of working on the footplate of a steam locomotive. After completing his apprenticeship his obsession moved to the road.

W.O. bought himself a Quadrant motorcycle and, along with two of his brothers, threw himself enthusiastically into racing, practising on the roads early in the morning when police speed traps weren’t operating.

Almost a century later, W.O.’s vision continues to guide the car brand’s beliefs, actions and ambitions. Located in Crewe, England and owned by Volkswagen AG since 1998, Bentley Motors remains the definitive British luxury car company. The joy of independent travel that the originator saw as fundamental carries through with a line of fragrances all based around global destinations. The latest elixir has been added to the Bentley BEYOND, The Collection meet Magnetic Amber,

Smooth and almost addictive inspired by the treasure of the location, exotic Panama and her white Amber. White Amber is one of the rarest and most highly valued varieties of the resin. Its scent is lighter than most deep rich Ambers giving it an almost ‘watery’ ‘rain’ ‘clean’ facet. Here it is derived from Ambroxan bringing an extremely subtle warming ‘Salt note’

Panama itself is a  transcontinental country spanning the southern part of North America and the northern part of South America.

A commonly relayed legend regarding the naming of the country is that there was a fishing village that bore the name “Panamá”, which purportedly meant “an abundance of fish” before the Spanish colonizers first landed.

The story of this destination was behind the Grasse-born Master Perfumer Karine Dubreuil-Sereni, delectable creation.

Imagine driving your Bentley Continental GT Speed Edition 12  to Panama and transporting yourself via many countries to pick up the key ingredients in this fragrance.

Starting in Italy ensuring dazzling, light, bright Bergamot, popping next to Morrocco for the brilliant aromatic herby Rosemary.

Making sure to pick up the soft green, lemony, cool yet warm given from a Cardamon hit. The central part of the journey brings with it the resinous woody warm biblical Olibanum along to join the adventure.

Then finally before driving to The Americas, the journey extends to the Middle East for ambery, animalic, sweet, fruity, woody, dry musky, even leathery and biblical ingredient Labdanum. After all no Amber-inspired scent misses this star resin.

Arriving in South America for the forming base notes sensual, smoky vanilla from Madagascar and tonka bean with its creamy almondy Tobacco facets.

The enigmatic journey takes us from the bright sunny climbs of Southern Europe to the captivating soul of South America. The Golden hue of the juice inside the bottle like the scent itself is reminiscent of all the best of the lesser known facest of Pamana, think of rich smoky rums, sweet woods, and cool breezes with sunny days alongside a passionate heart. This spicy, woody fragrance has a cocooning smoothness a hint of sexy smoke and is as magnetic as the name suggests as well as being rather addictive as the notes meet and meld.

With this new launch comes an eco-friendly and natural material: Wood. This sustainable material is incorporated into the design through a wooden ring adorning the bottle’s cap and the plate of the beige box, echoing the natural elements found within the fragrance.

Created with the designers of Bentley Motors the faceted flacon pays homage to Bentley’s signature cut-crystal glass headlights adorning the Continental GT. Its substantial weight of 400 grams guarantees stability, thanks to a thick glass base. The legendary “Winged B” logo, engraved on the silver metal shoulders of the flacon, serves as a testament to the brand’s timeless heritage.

Each fragrance of Bentley BEYOND The Collection translates a voyage into scent. There already exists a trip to Acapulco, Mexico, with Exotic Musk, an ambery musky composition by Mathilde Bijaoui. A silky haze of Musk evokes the sensuality of Acapulco nights. The rich, sunset glow of amber woods enhances the lustre of a fragrant black pearl: Tonka bean.

Alongside a voyage to Goa, India, with Majestic Cashmere, a woody fragrance by Julie Massé. A glittering embroidery of powdery Orris absolute and ambrette, offsets the smoothness of the fragrance’s main note, Cashmere wood, against a woody ambery dry-down as lush and warm as the finest pashmina.

Finally an odyssey in Java, Indonesia, with Wild Vetiver, an aromatic woody scent by Sidonie Lancesseur. Enhanced by sparkling Bergamot and Pepper, Vetiver’s smoky mineral notes blend with a subtle accord of Birch Amber Wood, bringing the scent to a stunningly elegant dry down.

This wardrobe of scents echoes the original trailblazers from W.O and his band of Bentley Boys, a gang always ready for a race, a challenge or a glass of champagne, the first generation of Bentley Boys was a close-knit group of extraordinary playboys, racers and adventurers who achieved global fame during the 1920s and 30s.

Alongside this collection sits another celebrating the proud heritage of the Bentley Girls, Mary Petre Bruce, Dorothy Paget and Diana Barnato the Bentley’s Flying Lady  with scents that include radiant Osmanthus, Rich Pimento, Mellow Heliotrope and Vibrant Hibiscus

Here these bottled juices with exotic destinations encapsulating not just the scent but the very spirit of both the boys and girls of Bentley

In 2003, the head barman of the American Bar at the Savoy mixed the Woolf Barnato cocktail in honour of the Bentley Boys. But we suggest you wear these perfumed journies to live the ‘spirit’ of the brand.

To find out all about the collections of Bentley Fragrances Please visit


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