Maison Molinard, the historic perfume factory of Grasse is one of the oldest in the world, here is Its history…
An ancestral Know-How
Poetically perched between the summits and the sea in Grasse, this French perfume factory sublimates beautiful materials with enthusiasm and high standards. Anchored in Grasse since 1849, this independent French House has a rare and ancestral know-how. Its state label “Entreprise du patrimoine vivant” salutes the excellent craftsmanship of Molinard alongside only two other houses: Guerlain and Caron. Célia Lerouge-Bénard, fifth generation and first woman leader, has been inspiring her with her creative audacity and her line of conduct since 2010. The family has the flower of perfume in their skin and the love for these little nuggets is passed on from generation to generation. From this land of inspiration, several tons of flowers are harvested each year for their exceptional olfactory qualities: the rose centifolia in May, the jasmine grandiflorum in August, as well as the iris pallida, the tuberose, the violet or even the flower of orange tree, adding their unique beauty to the Pays de Grasse.
An oriental fragrance for women
In 1921, Maison Molinard created Habanita, the first oriental fragrance for women to magnify vetiver, an essence hitherto reserved for men. A real revolution in the world of perfume, which until then had been governed by floral fragrances. Icon of the Roaring Twenties, the perfume quickly became a success. Women go out, dance, play sports, wear make-up, smoke and wear their hair short. Their skirts are shorter to the knees and they wear suits inspired by men’s locker rooms. Habanita becomes the emblem of freedom and of women in all their complexity. Sometimes sensual, sometimes seductive, the daring women who wear it affirm their original and unique style. To celebrate its 100th anniversary, Habanita is once again shaking up the codes.
A French perfume factory
Founded in 1900, the bastide Molinard houses in the heart of Grasse its historic factory, its creation laboratory, its museum, its period distillery whose metal structure was designed by Gustave Eiffel and an artisanal soap factory. A free guided tour lets you discover the manufacturing secrets of the greatest perfumes, but also the heritage of Maison Molinard. Thus, it is the collections of bottles signed by the famous master glassmakers René Lalique, Baccarat, period furniture (16th, 17th and 18th centuries), old labels and other curiosities that you will have the chance to contemplate.
Play the apprentice perfumers
If you have the chance to visit this magnificient place, you will be able to play the apprentice perfumers around one of the five workshops and leave with your personalized perfume creation and the magic formula of your fragrance that the House will jealously keep in its archives. A unique memory of your visit to the cradle of perfumery and an original experience for children and adults alike.
Molinard Museum – 60 boulevard Victor Hugo, Grasse –
free guided tours every 20min Creative workshop space: from 30min to 2h – from €30 to €199 – from 4 years old