To celebrate the launch of Louis Vuttion’s latest fragrance, Météore, master perfumer Jaques Cavallier-Belletrud has invited Wallpaper* readers to tour the centre of the brand’s fragrance creation- Les Fontaines Parfumées. Located in the heart of Grasse, the 18th-century estate boasts 450 different fragrant plants that are used to create Louis Vuttion’s distinctive scents. 

Jacques Cavallier-Belletrud smelling a vial of perfume
Jacques Cavallier-Belletrud at work in Les Fontaines Parfumées

As a child growing up in Grasse, Cavallier-Belletrud would walk past the impressive house and gardens every day totally unaware that behind those formidable wrought-iron gates he would one day find his creative playground. 

pink house in Grasse France surrounded by trees
The 300-year-old Les Fontaines Parfumées has been the home of Louis Vuttion and Christian Dior fragrances since 2016

Upon entering Les Fontaines Parfumées guests are greeted by an actual perfume fountain, fitting for a place that, when translated, is called ‘the scented fountains.’ When the fountain was first installed in the 1920s, visitors would come to the grounds to fill their bottles with the scented waters. Now, it functions as a symbol of the work that has been done there since 2016 by both Cavallier-Belletrud for Louis Vuitton and François Demachy for Dior

17th century stone fountain on Louis Vuitton Grasse estate
The La Foux spring on the grounds of the LVMH Grasse estate 

The main salon of Les Fontaines houses a unique Louis Vuitton trunk that holds dozens of scent vials used to craft house’s fragrances. Cavallier-Belletrud keeps a smaller version of the trunk in his office, ‘it’s a small laboratory, it comes with me all over the world and I can compose all the ingredients anywhere’ he says. 

His personal, portable laboratory has its more expansive counterpart at the top of the Grasse house. 2,500 raw materials are kept in the Les Fontaines Parfumées lab, all of which Cavallier-Belletrud experiments with to create his olfactory artworks.

bottles of Louis Vuitton perfume in the laboratory at the Grasse estate
Bottles of fragrance ingrediants in the laboratory at Les Fontaines Parfumées

He finds inspiration everywhere, ‘it comes from nature, from people, from paintings, from sculpture’ he says. ‘Always emotions, everything is emotions in life. My job is starting from these emotions, mixing ingredients, and creating the first idea for the perfume.’ 

pink flowers used to make perfume in Grasse
Flowers found in the extensive garden of Les Fontaines Parfumées

Whatever the concoction of materials, the final product promises to be a dreamy as the place where it was created. ‘Perfume allows us to dream. It is part of our very secret personality, it’s not an accessory, it’s not a commodity, it’s the strongest souvenir that you can get from somebody else.’

To see more of Les Fontaines Parfumées and learn about Météore see today’s Wallpaper* Instagram stories. §