Horizon (Guy Laroche)

I chuckle in good humor when reading fragrance reviewers' chief complaint about Horizon by Guy Laroche: its incredible strength. Before even sniffing this scent, I knew it would be heavy. Most of the proto-aquatics of the '80s and early '90s (pre-1994) tend to pack a wallop. I think it's interesting to observe how thick the sillage from these scents are. Stuff like Drakkar Noir, Polo Sport, Molto Smalto, and Insensé Ultramarine make their presence known, and Horizon is no exception. In light of this, unless you intend on making it your signature, I recommend sticking to the 1.7 oz. bottle, as it will go a very long way.

Now, on to the scent. Horizon opens with a bitter accord of grapefruit, lavender, pine, mint, and a "marine" note that is as bracing as it is heavy. The lavender - which is stunning - is the first horse out of the gate, followed by a minty grapefruit note. After ten or fifteen minutes, these elements meld into a more herbal and peppery fennel midsection, although the grapefruit continues to blare away. It's at this stage that things go from an evergreen color to a citrus blue. As the herbs settle, the abstract blue "marine" note, which is ostensibly calone, mingles with a warmer sandalwood and patchouli base. Maybe it's my imagination, but I swear this note smells like ambergris. It is very vague, but it has that mineral twinkle to it, and I feel a parallel with the ambergris element in Creed's Green Irish Tweed. Both scents share a sweet maritime smoothness - which is remarkable when you consider that I purchased my 1.7 oz bottle for $4. Horizon's grapefruit finally sweetens (and thankfully never sours), lending a certain brightness to the proceedings. Its drydown is considerably more civilized than its wild opening, and the scent is artistically all the better for it.

If you're like me in finding mainstream aquatics distasteful, this unusual aquatic fougère from Guy Laroche might be your cup of tea. I think Horizon is terrific stuff, upper middle-shelf juice, worth far more than I paid for it. Simply stunning, considering what else is out there for ten times as much! And I don't say this often, but I will say it here - Horizon smells like nothing else out there. This fragrance is truly a unique scent. It's aquatic, yes, but it's also greener and more complex than your standard Acqua di Gios, Nautica Voyages, and Azzaro Chromes. That said, it's much chewier in texture, denser, and less au courant. I find that the marine and wood notes in Horizon are dynamic, but still a bit "perfumey" and synthetic, perhaps due to their heavy-handed integration into the scent's core. Ironically, it's this accord that reminds me most of Drakkar Noir, and not the bitter citrus or pine needles. Nevertheless, Horizon is unisex, very well-made, and for the price it's worth checking out.


  1. I love this Cologne & I own a dozen bottles of the Cologne....it smells great & lasts all day !!!!!!

  2. Again, thanks for the review, which inspired my purchase of the aftershave, to test the water, and then, the EdT, once I was sold on the smell.


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