INTO THE WILD: In a setting befitting Bulgari’s new fragrance concept, the brand celebrated the launch of Man Wood Essence on Tuesday night in London’s highest public garden, Sky Garden on Fenchurch Street.
Surrounded by decorative foliage, the fragrance was revealed alongside a dedicated campaign #citizenofnature, directed by fashion photographer and filmmaker Jacob Sutton, featuring Canadian actor and model Nick Bateman.
Guests included actor Will Peltz, South Korean rapper Jun Jae Won and Lady Kitty Spencer, who dazzled in a floral printed dress.
Luis Miguel Gonzalez, managing director of Bulgari Perfumes, said the idea suddenly struck him when he was in the Porta Nuova district of Milan looking up at the Vertical Forest towers. “It was incredible to see so much nature in the heart of the city,” he said.
“It is a fragrance which really mirrors today’s aspiration of the urban society, the convenience and vibe of the big city and at the same time the quest and obsession for balance and authenticity,” added Jean-Christophe Babin, chief executive officer of Bulgari.
To follow its message of authenticity and in a bid to become a more sustainable brand, Man Wood Essence marks Bulgari’s commitment to reduce its environmental footprint.
The perfume bottle — shaped like a modern skyscraper — is made from 90 percent recycled glass and the brand is working in partnership with Firmenich, a supplier of sustainably sourced raw materials.
“The use of high-rate recycled glass is an objective for Bulgari and we are buying our cardboard folding boxes with the Forest Stewardship Council certification,” said Miguel Gonzalez. “Several elements of this fragrance show our intent to becoming more sustainable,” he added.
Made with vetiver, cypress and cedar wood, Man Wood Essence is a lighter offering in Bulgari’s roster of scents that tend to lean on the spicy side. While it’s marketed as a men’s perfume, the scent has been well-received by women, according to Miguel Gonzalez, who also touched upon the brand’s intent to expand its portfolio of unisex fragrances.
“For me, the perfume doesn’t have a sex — if you enjoy the smell you love, you can wear it,” said master perfumer Alberto Morillas. “We wanted to create something that would resonate with everybody.”
The fragrance is expected to perform best in European markets — “the scent is more European; Middle Eastern men prefer more oud-y scents,” Miguel Gonzalez said.
For Babin, Bulgari fragrances are designed to enhance the brand’s experiential touch points for the consumer instead of approaching it as a business — “although it is very profitable, it’s not meant to be a money maker,” he said.
The scent marks the second chapter of Babin’s strategy to enhance the Bulgari experience. He revealed that the brand is slated to release three more scents relating to the five elements of earth to complement both Man Wood Essence and Men in Black Essence, which launched in 2010.
The former will launch globally on Aug. 1 in-store and on its dedicated web site and across Bulgari’s distribution channels, including key retailers and e-commerce sites.
The perfume will be made available in two sizes: the 60ml eau de parfum retails at 59 pounds and the 100ml eau de parfum retails at 80 pounds.