Frame; The Scent of London You Never knew you knew

By Jo Phillips

Marylebone, St Marylebone or even Mary-le-bone was hit on by accident. Whilst escaping the noise and fumes of Oxford street – the main shopping through fare in central London- it was a gap in the wall that lead into St Christopher’s place which was a kin to a vein driving towards Marylebone village as its not known. Up to Marylebone High street made up of quaint boutiques, petite shops selling items for homes and gifting old fashion tea shops with windows overstuffed with varieties of deliciously tempting patisseries. What an exquisite little surprise it was, it’s as were there no traffic, a street right from a Arthur Conan Doyle novel about Sherlock Homes. Unsurprisingly it is of course part of the area if the infamous streets he once trod, real street that housed this literally creation. This area Intimate, with its hap hazard elegance, Marylebone, or ‘the Village’ felt a little of home.

Another day another perfect little find, one steeped in a history; secrets buried deep under the expensive facades of cream coloured Palladian-inspired villas are not given away with ease. For many years ago Belgravia was not the swanky expensive established home of the affluent and noble, but in fact was notoriously known as Five Fields as far back as the Middle Ages; a dangerous place for highwaymen and robberies. Its leafy green squares with their grand six story terrance houses were developed in the early 19th century by Richard Grosvenor, 2nd Marquess of Westminster under the direction of Thomas Cubitt, focusing centred around both Belgrave Square and Eaton Square. It was from this point its earn its grand reputation. The homes of numerous embassies, churches and regal squares edged by grand villas with central gardens locked the keys held only in the hands of the most precious of occupants. Walking and looking past the grand location and spot a mews, and momentarily be reminded of a time in London of horse drawn carriages and cobbled streets.

Lastly as we wander through these areas of London in our minds eye we hit Kensington. A large borough but with its own layers of history. Home of course to the British Royals care of Buckingham palace yet also  home to many a literary luminary; TS Elliot, Roald Dahl, and J.M. Barrie, to mention a few. But it’s also home to so many British educational institutions. Kensington isn’t all shopping heavens like Harrods and Harvey Nichols but dignified educational institutions such as Imperial College London, the Royal College of MusicHeythrop CollegeImperial College, London, the Royal College of Art and Kensington and Chelsea College. Then there are the magnificent museums the Natural History Museum, the Science Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum. Walk past many a red brick mansion flat, past high street stores high end boutiques keep going on seeing restaurants whilst finally ending up in the lush green park where a quite stop for resting can be made next to the iconic gothic Royal Albert memorial.

So why should we be wondering around three distinct areas in London, albeit only in our minds eye?? Well because Penhaligon’s, the most British of perfume companies have created three exclusive scents for this year all inspired by these unique hidden parts of London, because as much as we can travel in our mind we can also travel via what we smell; we can identify by walking with our feet, we can explore through our minds and we can also discover via our sense of smell.


Marylebone Wood Eau de Parfum

So Marylebone where sensuality mixes with dry sandalwood, mossy vetiver and the warmth of patchouli. A warm and yet modern take on a woody fragrance.

Belgravia Chypre Eau de Parfum

A traditional Chypre with a twist. Bergamot, oak moss, patchouli set off against raspberry and pink pepper and rose. Rich and sophisticated yet a wonderfully modern take on a Chypre which allows those a little unsure of this most elegant of scent to venture in…

Kensington Amber Eau de Parfum

The scent sums up a time period of expansion and travel synonymous with the victorian age. Think dramatic far flung  cinnamon with exotic vanilla which layer to create an exquisite comfort; a reminder of a all things luxurious.




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