The Perfume and Candles of Provence
Does that sound romantic?
Actually, Ginger was away in Canada and Nutmeg was certain that he had zero interest in visiting the Provence perfume distillery le Musée des Arômes or the candle maker at the Ciergerie de l’abbaye des Prémontrés.
The aroma museum is located in the Provencal town of Gravason, in the old cellars (caves) of l’Abbaye de Saint Michel de Frigolet. The distillery at le Musée des Arômes has been in operation for twenty years and they pride themselves on quality, organic products. The old cellars have been converted and enclose a boutique, day spa, museum and even a small conference facility.
The permanent exhibition provides an overview of the distilling process, a collection of perfume bottles, distillery equipment, brochures and other related paraphernalia. There is a short film describing the process of extracting the precious, essential oil and scented water from the plants. A process that is much the same as it was in ancient times, where cultivated flowers and herbs are either used fresh or dried, then water vapour steams the plant to create the essential oil and fragrant water.
Continue reading here for more information on why you might want to add these to your list of places to visit in Provence. Traditional Provencal plants are used at le Musée des Arômes to make perfumes and spa products (there is a day spa located onsite). You can visit the garden, which includes an explanation of the beneficial properties of each plant. Also, there is a small museum that is full of equipment and artifacts that were used at one time to make perfume.
Practical Information for Visitors:
Musée des Arômes et du Parfum (website)
Ancien Chemin d’Arles
Telephone: +33 (0)4 90 95 81 72
Open daily – check the website for seasonal changes in hours.