Franschhoek Valley has fast become one of my favourite towns to frequent in the Western Cape. It is nestled between some of the most gorgeous mountains and is surrounded by acres and acres of the country’s finest winelands. It’s a small community robust with visitors seeking splendid wines to pair with hearty cuisine. You could imagine my excitement then, when I was invited, along with the rest of the country’s top Beauty Ed’s to attend the Elizabeth Arden Media Event with a one night’s stay at Le Franschhoek Hotel & Spa, all for a closer look into what the cult classic beauty brand has up their sleeve for the upcoming months.
Transport was provided via shuttle from the Victoria & Alfred Hotel in Cape Town to Le Franschhoek Hotel & Spa. I arrived a little early so I grabbed myself a much needed cappuccino-to-go plus a ham and cheese bagel from a cute little café I discovered just next door. By the time I got to the shuttle, a lot of the Beauty Ed’s had arrived and we proceeded to make our way to Franschhoek Valley. A fairly short journey later, we dropped our bags at reception, checked into our rooms and headed to the hotel gardens. It was a beautiful day out as we prepared for lunch and the first presentations.
A Lunch for the Senses
In true Elizabeth Arden style, a healthy spread of delicious food was waiting for us buffet-style. However, we first got to know the complex notes that make-up Arden’s newest fragrance, Always Red Femme. It’s an EDT set to launch today and caters for the Arden woman that’s always on the move, is bold and has a passionate spirit. Always Red Femme is packaged in a matte black six panel bottle with accents of pink, red and lace-inspired florals. This for me, definitely hints “date-night fragrance” as the base notes are made up of vanilla, moss, cederwood and patchouli. Another fragrance we were introduced to during lunchtime was Elizabeth Arden 5th Avenue Only NYC. It’s already available in-store and is a handbag favourite of mine. It has hints of Italian bergamot, wild peony and creamy sandalwood and is light enough for daytime wear but bold enough to last hours on end.
Elizabeth Arden Always Red Femme 100ml – R895
Elizabeth Arden Always Red Femme 30ml – R545
Elizabeth Arden 5th Avenue ONLY NYC EDP 75ml – R595.00
Our first press day ended with a formal dinner inspired by Britney Spears. To give you a visual, haughty burlesque dancers set the mood as our senses gave way to Britney’s newest fragrance, Private Show. This one is already on-counter too and retails from R465 – R665.
The Colour Workshop
Colour was on the agenda the next day as Elizabeth Arden’s National Makeup Artist Lucho Mhlongo took us through the brands newest launches. First up: a foundation that unfortunately does not have darker shades past a somewhat medium beige. It seems promising but I’d rather talk about it when I know a wider range of shades have been created. However, I was excited about a new foundation brush. This heart shaped contraption formally known as the Dual End Brush is excellent for blending out liquid foundations, especially those that mattify and tend to settle onto the skin quite quickly. The more refined end is what I use to contour my nose although it technically is a concealer brush. I am also excited about their Liquid Assets Colour Collection. Set to only launch towards the end of October, you can look forward to Beautiful Colour Bold Liquid Lipsticks (YAY!) in seven different shades as well as the Beautiful Colour Bold Defining 24HR Liquid Eye Liner in five different shades.
Dual End Foundation Brush – R395
Beautiful Color Bold Liquid Lipstick – R295
Beautiful Color Bold Defining 24HR Liquid Eye Liner – R265
Sunflowers, Green Tea and some Nectarine
If you loved Elizabeth Arden Sunflowers Morning Gardens that came out in September last year, you’ll fall just as in love with Elizabeth Arden Green Tea Nectarine Blossom. It’s just been made available in-store and is a flirty rendition of Sunflowers Morning Gardens. It packs a juicy punch of nectarine fruit while bursts of peach, apricot and fresh bergamot remind you of summer. The bottle is gorgeous and it will make an everday appearance in my beach bag.
Ending our time with the Elizabeth Arden team in Franschhoek was sad but the reprieve from city life was well worth it. I will do a follow-up post towards the end of October showing a closer look into the Liquid Assets Colour Collection as well as a surprise Limited Edition skincare product you’ll be itching to get your hands on!
Until then, share your thoughts below on which items you’re most excited to try from Elizabeth Arden in the comment section below…