Holiday Photo Essay Paris, France, Soju & Seoul, Korea

Hey gang,
What can I say but Paris is FREAKING AH MAY ZING! A perfumistas dream.

The amazing Denyse Beaulieu, author of The Perfume Lover, Bertrand Duchaufour’s scent muse for L’Artisan’s Seville au l’Aube, Grain de Musc blog hostess, English -French translator and glam girl around town and I had an appointment to interview her and it was great fun. Look out for those interviews here, Perfume Posse and Express Magazine NZ.

Neela Vermeire and her gorgeous husband Tony were excellent hosts. We were lucky enough to spend a couple of great nights with them. Don’t forget to follow Neela Vermeire Creations on FB and Twitter because there will be some incredible news soon. I can’t tell you anything yet because I can’t remember but as soon as Neela reminds me I will give you an exposé and an interview. Neela, Jin and I all went to the auctions and grabbed some bargains including CHANEL handbag and 2 vintage Hermes scarves for songs.

Aaron, a mate of mine from Sydney, was our tour guide. He has made an excellent match with a Paris local and now lives there in bliss. He was our tour guide, friend, eating companion and shopping expedition master. Aaron introduced us to the auction house. We wer also feted at his home on our last night and ate snails, my first time. Thanks to the crew that night, Gerard and the wonderful ladies.

We did Versailles, the Louvre, the Orangerie, many churches and cathedrals including Notre Dame, the Eiffel Tower at night and much more in the way of culture. Walked along the very full a fast flowing Seine, had hot waffles, croissants, onion soup, and many other French delights.

What shopping did I do? I bought two Serge Lutens bell jars for friends, Shalimar and Vol de Nuit Parfums from Guerlain, 200ml of discontinued next month Mitzah from DIOR (they have no 125ml left) and would have bought Jin Cartier VI but one of the Cartier ladies was a liar and a bitch in Galleries Lafayette and I called her HIDEOUS instead, which was perfectly truthful though not perhaps nice. Jin was determined to buy me the Bottega Veneta Parfum in the Morano glass bottle but I persuaded him not to because we have the EdP and till he is a big property developer that stuff can wait.

Since then we’ve been in Korea doing the big meet the parents thing. Korea is beautiful, we have travelled it from top to bottom by train, bullet train 2.5 hours, and it’s so pretty. Jin’s family is warm and wonderful and they welcomed me with open arms. The food was a challenge but I survived and tasted a bunch of new things. We all had a laugh and Mum and Dad even had very heartfelt (translated by Jin) conversations about integrity, trust and love. They’ve been together for nearly 40 years so they’re advice is solid.

Anyway, the holiday is over on Tuesday and we’ll be back to normal.
Loads of love,
Portia xx

















41 thoughts on “Holiday Photo Essay Paris, France, Soju & Seoul, Korea

  1. Vol de Nuit propeller bottle? Okay, I’m officially jealous now! My sister is going to Paris in April so I need to choose one thing for her to bring back for me, tossing up between Ambre Narguile, Coromandel and Mona di Orio Ambre, then there’s the Lutens bell jars, hmmmmm 🙂


  2. Oh, what a great time you had! 🙂

    Especially Paris – I LOVE that city!
    And what do you say of Versailles? I want to visit again, preferably in spring as I believe it must be a wonder then (not that it wasn’t in autumn as well, especially as it was a lovely, sunny day).


    • Hi Ines, Versailles made me wonder and sad at the same time. What a place. You could spend a month in each room and still have unanswered questions. In a day it was way too much. My head exploded before we got to Marie-Antionette’s chambers.
      Paris was super great this time. We have been invited back by mates already, maybe 2015.
      Portia xx


      • I know what you mean. I tried to wrap my mind around everything I saw and heard (I took time to listen to my set-up and connect everything) but at the end of the day all those dauphins and kings were a blur. 🙂
        Not to mention the fact that just enjoying the look and feel of those rooms is enough to make one want to stay there and think about past lives (in my case be jealous for not living them).
        I can’t help it – I adore castles, palaces and places like that.


  3. Have been enjoying your photo essays of your holiday very much! Glad to hear that it’s been super all the way around. Jin’s family looks lovely, and by your account, every bit as welcoming and charming as they appear.


  4. I have really loved all the post and pictures from your trip. You sure know how to take a vacation! Everyone looks so happy and like they’re having a great time.
    I’m wondering what that “hideous” woman did. I really have little patience for nasty salespeople.


    • Hey Poodle,
      It has been beyond awesome, so lucky.
      The Cartier woman was just an angry cow. Having bought Cartier II in Prague we have been searching for a sample of Cartier VI for Jin because I won’t spend that kind of money unless it’s love. He doesn’t care about perfume in that way. So she was really short with us, pretended she had no samples at all (though we had been told a new shipment was coming in a couple of days before by another SA) and when confronted with this she was sneering and folded her arms and put a face on like a toad and so I told her that her service was hideous.
      It was kind of fun,
      Portia xxx


  5. So homesick for Paris–I lived there for 7 years! And now I’m in Koreatown Los Angeles- know what you mean about the food-I think Koreans have a layer of iron or something, that’s some HOT spicy cuisine!! Great trip, I love to travel, thanks for sharing it all with us!


  6. Just echoeing everyone else really; thanks for these fabulous updates and well done on so packing so much in. Jin’s family do sound lovely and they obviously really took to you – of course they would! Nice perfume purchases and auction steals too. Vol de Nuit parfum is very special to me and I bet Mitzah really suits you. I didn’t know they were discontinuing it. Very foolish.

    Have a smooth journey back home.


  7. What a fab post…love your pics…but especially Lin jumping for joy surrounded by Burren’s columns…one of my favourite spots in Paris! Your pics brought back so many memories…those golden stairs of Guerlain, Cafe Nemours just in front of the Palais Royal, Serge’s purple wonderland…the perfumery at Galleries Lafayette. Wow…the 200ml Dior…what a coup….am still loving my gorgeous Eau Noire. Did you try the Francis Kirkjidan fragrances in Printemps? And would love to see your Hermes scarves!!! Loving your blog. A bientot, Robyn


    • Hey Robyn,
      Paris is special and all those great places were so close to us. Jin found an e traordinary deal at Hotel du Louvre so it was walking everywhere. Amazing.
      One of the Hermes scarves went to Jin’s Mum but the other has spent some quality next time already. I’ll post a photo soon.
      Portia xxx


  8. Thanks for taking us on your journey, Portia! I was in Paris in 1993 and then again in 2002 (way before my perfumista days) and visited all the usual places sans the parfumeries and your who’s who in the perfume world encounters. Methinks I have to visit Paris again!


  9. Sounds like you two had an amazing time! I am so jealous of all of your perfume shopping around the world. Sorry about the bitchy sales lady at Cartier. We have the same thing here, they guard the samples as if they are gold (as if they are costing them so much money to give out!). I really wonder if so many people will just buy a costly perfume after spraying it one time….okay, come to think of it, over here people probably do 🙂 Thanks for all the wonderful tales and photos!


  10. What a wonderful trip! Thank you for sharing it with us. Also thank you for the forewarning about Mitzah discontinuation: I’m trying to get a bottle before they are gone.


  11. Thanks for taking us along on your travels. Your photos and descriptions made me feel like I went with you every step of the way, smelling wonderful perfume and tasting delicious dishes!


  12. Pingback: Perfume Review – Dior Mitzah (La Collection Privée): A Worthy Tribute To Dior’s Muse | Kafkaesque

  13. Portia, good news: Mitzah is not being discontinued! 😀 I spoke to the Dior Beauty Stylist at the Las Vegas Dior store (the sole Dior shop in the US, I believe) and told me that Mitzah is permanent. She just came from Paris and from a training session there at Dior Beauty. She said that Mitzah is only being rotated out from the Dior mini-stores WITHIN department stores – i.e., 2nd party vendors. Basically, what they seem to do is to rotate out a number of the Privée line perfumes within stores like Les Galleries Lafayettes, Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, etc., so that Mitzah is getting switched out to make way for some of the other Privée line scents. I guess they like to limit what is available in department stores since this is technically considered an “Exclusive” line. That’s why it will remain in all the actual, free-standing Dior stores, and will always be available online.

    Anyway, I just thought you and/or some of your readers may like to know. I ended up falling for the scent and falling hard. Thankfully, they had plenty of the “small” size — which is still the largest bottle of perfume that I’ve ever purchased. LOL! 4.25 oz as a “small”… ha!


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