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St. Moritz In A Flacon

Inviern and Engiadina are the names of the two olfactory symbols of winter and summer in St. Moritz. Created by star perfumer Geza Schön.

"Inviern” and “Engiadina” are the names of the two olfactory essences symbolising winter and summer in St. Moritz. Both scents were created by internationally renowned perfumer Geza Schön and marketed by communications expert Eveline Fasser Testa, who knows the smell of St. Moritz well – after all, she has been breathing the fresh air of the Engadin all her life.

It was her stay on the island of Elba that made Eveline Fasser Testa think. The Italian island has this distinct smell to it, which is also available as a scent called “Acqua dell’Elba”. “Why don’t we have a scent of St. Moritz,” the entrepreneur thought to herself. “We have so many visual symbols, culinary delights, so many pictures and memories that represent St. Moritz. But we don’t have any olfactory symbols – no scent that creates an emotional connection with our town and reminds us of the wonderful time there.” Back in the beautiful Engadin, Eveline Fasser Testa had a meeting with tourism director Ariane Ehrat, who had been playing with the idea of creating an olfactory essence of St. Moritz for a while. And she had already been in contact with Berlin-based perfumer Geza Schön, who created the very special “Molecule 01” in 2006 – a fragrance made of only one scent, the synthetic Iso E Super. It smells so good that even celebrities like Kate Moss and Madonna became fans of the perfume. Eveline Fasser Testa liked the idea of getting Geza Schön on board, especially since the German perfumer also loves St. Moritz. When Eveline Fasser Testa was entrusted to lead the project, she went to Berlin and told Geza Schön: “We need a fragrance that symbolises a cold winter day in St. Moritz.”

One for summer, one for winter

That’s how everything began about two years ago. A few months later “Inviern” was launched. The scent representing winter in the Engadin is made with gentian, juniper and Swiss pine wood and reminds us of a walk through the snowy forest of Staz. It is available as a room scent or a scented candle. A second creation was soon to follow: “Engiadina” is an homage to summer flower meadows in the Val Minor valley close to Piz Lagalb during summer. This summer scent is made with gentian, pine wood and fresh mountain air: “Geza Schön’s interpretation of the mountains,” Eveline Fasser Testa explains.

Inviern & Engiadina

Both names are of Romance origin, because “to me it was important to honour our Romance heritage,” the Grisons-born entrepreneur tells us. When she was little, she still learned Romansh in school. Over the past 20 years, Eveline Fasser Testa has worked for many international agencies, until she finally decided to launch her own product instead of just helping other companies to market theirs: “Ariane and I had the idea and Geza created the scent, but I took the entrepreneurial risk and at the end of the day, I had to decide whether the flacon should be green, blue or red, what kind of wood we should use for our sticks and what the packaging should look like.” And she did: blue for winter, orange for summer, untreated rattan sticks for the flacons and a natural packaging without protection foil. All well-informed decisions made by a woman who really knows what sells.

And who knows what she expects from a fragrance that is supposed to represent St. Moritz. For a good reason: Eveline Fasser Testa grew up on the wonderful smell of nature in the Engadin. She still remembers what summer smelled like as a kid, when she had to run 4.4 kilometres around Lake St. Moritz, preferably in under 30 minutes. She knows the smell of the winter wind blowing in her face while going down a powder slope Or the smell of the woods that allow you to go for endless hikes and biking tours: “Nature doesn’t change so quickly. It’s like with the sea: Whether you were there as a child or you go there now, the smell is still the same.”

This is also true for Inviern and Engiadina. The two scents represent only the natural side of St. Moritz – they were definitely not created to symbolise the champagne lifestyle and prestige-oriented “lighthouse character”, as Eveline Fasser Testa puts it, that some tourists associate with the beautiful, glitzy town at 1,800 metres above sea level. They stand for the region’s fresh, healthy, breathtaking nature, which, after all, is one of the main reasons why locals like Eveline Fasser Testa still love to live here, why guests like Geza Schön feel so comfortable here and why tourists want to take some of their beautiful memories of St. Moritz back home with them, in a flacon.

Text: Martha Miklin // friendship.is
Photos: Ian Ehm // friendship.is; Daniel Martinek Photography

March 24, 2017

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