Scientists say scent is a powerful trigger for vivid emotional memories. If your grandmother wore Chanel No. 5, you may think of her every time you catch a whiff of the perfume on a stranger passing by. The scent of plumeria wafting from a candle may transport you back to a tropical island vacation you enjoyed.
So what better way to capture (and relive) the joy of a wedding than by wearing a meaningful, custom-made fragrance? The Spa at Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea and spas at several other Four Seasons properties, including Four Seasons Resort Nevis, have teamed up with Ajne Parfumerie and Apothecary to offer an on-property bespoke fragrance experience.
“Scent is more powerful than all of our other emotions,” says Jane Hendler, perfumer and co-founder of Ajne, based in Carmel, California. “At the slightest whiff, you are instantly taken back to your special wedding day.”
The gift of a custom fragrance is perfect for a groom to give to his bride, for a couple to indulge in together, or for a bride to experience with her bridesmaids. The 90-minute consultation (by appointment only) is conducted by the property’s melangeur, or blending expert, who has completed a 25-hour certification programme developed by Ajne. It begins with a quick computerised fragrance analysis test to learn about one’s personality, preferences and health. Next, clients sniff blends of different scent categories—citrus, floral, herbaceous, spicy and so on—to determine what the nose is most drawn to. Finally, choices are tested on the skin to see what reacts best to the body chemistry. The melangeur then blends the custom fragrance while you wait, or it may be delivered to a hotel guest’s room later in the day.
So what scents are best for weddings? At Four Seasons Resort Lana’i at Manele Bay, guests can choose from more than 200 notes—many of them indigenous to Hawaii, such as tuberose, juniper and pink grapefruit. For a beach wedding at the property, the resident melangeur might recommend notes of pikake, which grows on the island, and some light citruses or lemon-grass scents to complement the floral scent.
At the hillside garden retreat Four Seasons Resort Lana’i, The Lodge at Koele, you might wear a lavender blend, combining three types of lavender from around the world, with a touch of sandalwood to bring a warming and sensual element to the fragrance.
“It really depends on the location of the wedding and the wearer’s tastes,” says Hendler, though she adds that you can never go wrong with floral scents. “Florals are the scent style of the heart, and opening the heart is what starting a new life with your soulmate is all about.”