That garden will be located in center of the Trianon estate, in the Châteauneuf Orangerie garden, and include hundreds of plat varieties that are used in fragrance-making. Kurkdjian is working with the Trianon’s gardeners to choose hundreds of fragrant plants that are inspired by the Trianon gardens in the 17th century.
“This exceptional garden will include traditional species, such as roses and jasmine, as well as plants with surprising scents, ranging from chocolate to apple,” LVMH said in a statement. “There will also be malodorous plants and so-called ‘mute’ plants, such as hyacinth, peony and violet, whose scents must be reproduced synthetically for fragrances.”
The Perfumer’s Garden is set to open next spring.
Perfume history runs deep at the Château de Versailles, where in the 17th century Louis XIV commissioned work on what later became the Grand Trianon. Flowers — and perfumes — were à la mode, and the Trianon gardens became home to odoriferous species. LVMH called “the palace the cradle of the perfume-making craft from the late 17th century onwards.”
Kurkdjian has a longstanding link with Versailles and its palace. He attended the city’s perfumery school, and a few years after graduating from there, he recreated Marie-Antoinette’s Sillage de la Reine scent, concocting the juice from archival documents.
In 2006, Kurkdjian and the cofounder of Maison Francis Kurkdjian, Marc Chaya, created for the Versailles Off festival an olfactory installation, called “Soleil de Minuit.” During the two successive years after that, the perfumer dreamed up an olfactory experience in the château’s garden for the Grandes Eaux Nocturnes night fountain shows.