Acqua di Parma launched Colonia Assoluta in 2003. It is a unisex fragrance, created by Jean Claude Ellena and Bernard Duchaufour, and features notes of orange, bergamot, verbena, cardamom, pink pepper, pimento, jasmine, ylang ylang, rose, wild orchid, cedar, aromatic Thai resins, patchouli, white musk and amber. The “he” below is Marlen, one of the moderators on the basenotes forum, joining me for our third joint review.
He Says: One of my favorite warm weather scents, Colonia Assoluta offers a refreshing and refined bouquet without resorting to employing currently popular notes of tea and grapefruit, and without any ozone or marine accords.
What Colonia Assoluta does offer is a sparkling and seemlessly blended eau de cologne with both a refreshing and pleasant sillage and better than average lasting power. On my skin, none of the individual notes are ever emphasized though the fragrance transforms ever-so-subtly into a slightly warmer white woods scent in the drydown. A total pleasure to wear in all its stages, there’s just something so right about this sophisticated scent for warm summer days.
She Says: I should start by saying that I have never cared for the original Acqua di Parma Colonia, which smells nice in the bottle but turns bitter, soapy and harsh on my skin. Colonia Assoluta starts off nicely with peppered citrus notes and lovely undertones of cardamom. I would swear there is a hint of cumin as well, but perhaps I am getting paranoid about cumin. At any rate, the top notes are sparkling and light and summery.
As it dries down, the fragrance changes gears entirely. The citrus and spice notes fade into a flat woody-musky scent with light florals. I agree entirely with Marlen that individual notes are not emphasized: I don’t smell rose, or jasmine, or ylang. It just smells dull and rather nondescript.
It has more depth than the original Colonia, lasts longer, and has none of Colonia’s harshness. If given the choice between the two, I would pick Assoluta over the original Colonia. But I would rather not wear either.
Colonia Assoluta is an Eau de Cologne. For buying information, see the listing for Acqua di Parma under Perfume Houses.