It all started with one message. Doaa, the co-founder of Luxe House invited me to drop by at the Perfumery & Co. to explore Anfas‘ range of exclusive scents, including the Anfas Watan collection. Interestingly, both of us have similar scent preferences and going with how excited she was about the new niche brand, I knew I had to call in and schedule my visit at the earliest. In other words, I was dying to unearth the next Le Labo, Byredo or Goutal.
About the Perfumer
Anfas is founded by the Emirati perfumer, Asim Al Qassim. It is through Anfas that Al Qassim aspires to bring together his passion for music, design and fragrance.
But if you ask me, there’s something magical in these elixirs. From the fragrance notes to the aesthetics of the perfume bottles, Anfas’ Watan collection rekindles a familiar feeling deep in my heart. More like the nostalgia for my home. Soft floral facets blended with sweet buttery caramel notes and topped with hints of cinnamon, amber and oud.
Ishq’ and Sakan conjures up nostalgic feelings that are all so very familiar. The Ramadan nights, roasting coffee beans with the family, the rich fragrant bakhoors and the scintillating aroma of homemade cinnamon bread.
The Aesthetics & Design
The stopper is round in shape to represent the traditional coffee table with the Arabian sun inscribed on its top. Every aspect of its design is intricately modelled to honor the Emirati culture and heritage. For instance, the rim of the lid features carvings of palm tree leaves which is native to the country. Similarly, the base of the bottle is etched with the corresponding leaf design.
The flacons on the other hand, are all hand-decorated. The idea here is to present luxury at its finest. Therefore, Al Qassim opted to design the frosted glass bottle such that it be delicately wrapped in thin foils of gold with contrasting caramel and brown color accents. Each fragrance is then color coded to reflect the aura and spirit of the composition.
Another interesting addition is the seal or the logo placement of the brand. It is beautifully pressed into melted wax and separately attached in a pendant style to the bottle. There’s so much finesse in the design of the bottle.
Anfas Watan | Collection
Anfas Watan was launched in 2018 and includes four fragrances. The oriental- fruity Ishq (red), oriental-gourmand Gaya (green), oriental-woody/resinous Watan (gold) and the more oriental-spicy woody Sakan (purple).
Anfas Watan Collection | Ishq
Top notes: jasmine, saffron
Mid notes: raspberries, amber
Base notes: moss, talc
Going by the fragrance notes, it’s no surprise that this is one of their bestsellers. This is the crème de la crème of the collection! For my taste, it conquers what it claims. Ishq is an Arabic word for love, admiration or passion. This fruity floral fragrance combines jasmine, saffron, raspberry, amber, oakmoss and talc. I can see why some of the reviewers consider this one of the finest modern day renditions of the original Baccarat Rouge.
Ishq marks its own territory and does it in full grandeur. I love the combination of raspberries, talc and saffron. The saffron whilst present, is very tame, but it’s the combination with amber that gives the fragrance a warm, leather spice accord. It results in an exotic powdery scent that is soft, creamy and spell-bounding! Though considered unisex, but I find it to be slightly leaning to the feminine side. Its longevity is beyond impressive – lasting almost all day! Sillage and projection are great too.
I hope you have enjoyed reading this. Do let us know if there’s perfume you’d like us to test. Also, you can find more fragrance related reviews here.