Royal Blend by Abdul Samad Al Qurashi

Amazing, period. And trust me: for this one, you don't really need to be a "connoisseur" or to make some efforts to agree with me. It's pure, straightforward beauty. Royal Blend is a *fantastic* oud-woody-ambery (ambergris) scent with nuances of flowers and vanilla, which easily outclasses any other (especially niche) scent with these types of notes. The opening is warm, refined, deep, with a thick, smoky, slightly dry woody base (the oud, which is quite restrained here, nonetheless outrageously enjoyable), resins, a few spices, and something so irresistibly radiant and luminous, warm, silky: it's vanilla seeds, so dense and graceful they smell also of velvet and flower petals. No flowers in the composition, but I clearly smell them, light and lively, sweetening and softening the woody-ambery blend. The quality of the materials is so great you get a physical feel of coziness, warmth, confidence and utter pleasure, like watching a summer sunset on the sea, scented with your favourite perfume, waiting for dinner to be served. Each ingredient carries its nuances; the ambergris is camphoraceous, slightly skanky, slightly salty, at the same time mellow and balsamic. The oud, well, it's real (and I guess, quite aged), so you know already what to expect if you've ever experienced the real, great, magically complex smell of agar wood. What intrigues me of Royal Blend is the final result, which is this warm elegance that sticks to your skin for hours, sensual and sophisticated, Oriental and opulent but at the same restrained and utterly refined. I won't dare to say that this seems to be the true nature of Arabian perfumery, all about elegance and natural mystery, but surely these are the main qualities I am finding – for the first time in my life – in these oils by Al Qurashi, contrary to what I am used to with my Western modern perfumes (which have other qualities, I am not saying they are rubbish, obviously). Also, the projection is impressive here: I applied some drops on my left hand, and I could easily smell it "on" me like if I sprayed it all over my clothes. And as all other Al Qurashi oils I've tested so far, the persistence is great, surviving a shower - in this case it did even not only survive it, but actually became better after it, more deep, more bright, more silky, like if the combined action of warm water and soap had somehow "helped" it to penetrate more deeply in my skin. Or well, however it smelled still gorgeous. Easily my personal favourite from Al Qurashi so far, as it has really them all – class, deepness, complexity, persistence, versatility. It's less complex and less challenging than other oils, so in a way less "interesting" perhaps, but fairly more versatile and with a (probably) wider potential appeal, and I appreciate this balance of qualities - hence my high rate. I've written it also for other products from this house but I feel to repeat it here too, even if I may sound affiliated with them (which I am not, obviously): any perfume fan shall try these products once in a lifetime.


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