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Fragonard Perfume Museum, Paris

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04/27/20

The Fragonard Perfume Museum Paris is a small museum dedicated to the world of perfumes. Originally opened in 1983, the Perfume Museum in Paris 9 was renovated in the last years by the historical fragrance-maker Fragonard and reopened as the Fragonard Musée du Parfum.

Considering that Paris is (together with Grasse) the world capital of perfumery and locals’ love for perfumes, the French capital could not stay with a museum dedicated to perfumes for long!

The Fragonard Perfume Museum of Paris is always free. The Perfume Museum is one of the best free museums in Paris so you cannot miss this wonderful museum!

Fragonard's first perfume bottles

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Fragonard Perfume Paris – The Story

Parfumerie Fragonard was founded in 1926 in Grasse (South of France). Today, this family business is one of the last representatives of the perfumes’ craft tradition in the French capital.

In the fifties, Jean-Francois Costa (the father of the current managers) started collecting precious objects related to the world of perfumes and its history. This collection by a perfume-passionate is today the heart of the Museum’s collection.

Paris Perfume Museum

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Fragonard Museum Paris Part 1: How to Make Perfume

To visit the Perfume Museum it is necessary to join a guided tour in English or French. The guided tour lasts 20 minutes and it is free.

During the first part of the tour, scent lovers discover Fragonard’s “savoir-faire and how perfumes are made. In theory, anybody can be a maître parfumeur, it is a matter of studying and training. In France there are three schools dedicated to this art located in Paris, Versailles, and Grasse. Students try to memorize all the possible scents linking each one to a personal memory.

Fragonard's historic laboratory

Fragonard's historic scents collection

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Fragonard Museum Paris Part 2: The History of Perfumery

During the second part of the visit the guide tells visitors about perfumery’s 3.000 years of history – from Ancient Egypt until our days -through beautiful ancient objects, images, and short videos.

It was interesting to learn, for example, that in different historical periods perfumes had different uses and purposes. We also learned that until the beginning of the 19th century, perfumes and their bottles were unique (made especially for one person). It was also at that time when the concept of male perfume and female perfume appeared for the first time. Until then, there were only summer perfumes and winter perfumes, without gender differences.

historic perfume bottles

Fragonard's historic perfume bottles

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Perfume Shopping

perfume shop at Fragonard Museum

The visit ends at Fragonard’s shop on the first floors where scent lovers can appreciate Fragonard’s most iconic perfumes. It was funny when the guide proposed us to try to guess the main scents for each perfume.

As you can see Fragonard’s perfumes are sold in tin (Ti) bottles. This was due to the lack of glass after the Second World War. Tin turned to be an excellent option because tin protects perfumes from light, heat, and humidity much better than glass.

Fragonard shop proposes interesting offers if you buy different perfumes.

Fragonard Perfume Museum was a beautiful discovery. The visit was very interesting and its location is very beautiful. If you are interested in the world of scents, this is the museum for you.

 

Paris Perfume Museum – Practical Info

The Fragonard Museum is tucked away in an elegant square of Paris 9, not far from the Opéra de Garnier. You can find this museum at 3-5 Square de l’Opéra Louis Jouvet, Paris 75009.

You can reach the museum by metro, Opéra metro station (lines 3, 7 and 8).

The free guided visits are in English and French. They start every 15 minutes and they last 20 minutes.

 

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  • Katie @ Zen Life and Travel
    07/26/2017 at 12:02 am

    I went here on my first (and only) trip to France 21 years ago!! Fun to read about it now.

    • WorldInParis
      07/29/2017 at 6:17 pm

      I think that since then they did A LOT of renovation works! Did you recognize the pictures?

  • Castaway with Crystal
    09/20/2016 at 1:47 pm

    Awesome! What a cool place to visit! Will have to check it out 🙂 🙂

    • WorldInParis
      09/23/2016 at 9:16 pm

      Yeah, small but beautiful (plus it smells good 🙂 )

  • Helena
    09/20/2016 at 12:50 pm

    I think this is such a brilliant idea! Adding to my already too long must see list in Paris!

    • WorldInParis
      09/23/2016 at 9:16 pm

      Lol! If the list gets too long you will have to come soon 😉

  • Lauren Meshkin @BonVoyageLauren
    09/20/2016 at 12:49 am

    What a unique place to visit! I’ll be in Paris in November with my mom and we’ll definitely pop in for a visit. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • WorldInParis
      09/23/2016 at 9:16 pm

      Cool to know, Lauren! Bon voyage 🙂

  • Carolina Colborn
    09/19/2016 at 9:11 pm

    We were glad we were able to go to Grasse and visited the Fragonard Museum there! Fascinating town!

    • WorldInParis
      09/23/2016 at 9:17 pm

      Oh, yes, it must be cool! 🙂

  • JEM
    09/19/2016 at 8:12 pm

    This is very interesting. I’ll remember this when get back to Paris. Thanks for sharing.

    • WorldInParis
      09/23/2016 at 9:17 pm

      You are welcome 🙂

  • Nathan
    09/19/2016 at 3:01 pm

    I’ve never been to a fragrance museum but I would love to go. I’ve seen places before where you can customize a scent but never a museum. Very interesting!

    • WorldInParis
      09/23/2016 at 9:17 pm

      Plus it smells very good 🙂

  • Ferna
    09/19/2016 at 1:38 pm

    wow! I am so overwhelmed by this. I am such a perfume lover, and this is my first to know about Fragonard Perfume museum! I like reading articles about Paris that is different from the usual Eiffel tower and other famous tourist spot. And I will include this Fragonard perfume museum when I get to visit Paris next year. Awesome!

  • Fit Two Travel
    09/19/2016 at 7:16 am

    What an interesting museum! I think my nose would go into overdrive!

    • WorldInParis
      09/23/2016 at 9:18 pm

      Lol! One needs some nose training but then it is ok 🙂

  • Punita Malhotra
    09/18/2016 at 4:11 pm

    Love this post. Perfumes are the ultimate in luxury for every girl and a visit to a perfume museum would be so interesting. Will make a note of this for future.

    • WorldInParis
      09/23/2016 at 9:20 pm

      I can still smell it 🙂

  • Rebecca
    09/18/2016 at 1:17 am

    This would be such an interesting place to visit. Many years ago when I visited Paris my Mom wanted me to bring home a bottle of L’Air du Temps. And it had to be the bottle with the crystal doves on the top. I still have the bottle. 🙂

    • WorldInParis
      09/23/2016 at 9:20 pm

      Oh, cool! What a nice souvenir 🙂