Acqua Fiorentina (Creed) "Sweet Water"

I have only worn three of Creed's "Femme" Millésimes, with Acqua Fiorentina being the first. Taking stock of each, I'd have to say that I understand why women aren't drawn to Creed, although I'm not so sure my reasoning aligns itself with reality. I suspect, rather strongly, that women find Creed's Femme range to be somewhat dull. There's a handful of stodgy florientals. The super-synthetic "Love In" duo. A few Royal Exclusives that are so ungodly expensive and impractical that even the richest of the rich should raise eyebrows. Nothing stands out as a breakthrough scent; Creed lacks a feminine version of Green Irish Tweed, Aventus, or a postmodern-gourmand floral, like Bond's Chinatown. They may want to buckle down, study the feminine market, and try giving the girls something to talk about. Things like Acqua Fiorentina ain't cutting it.

People have asked why this fragrance is named after Florence. It's actually named after an Italian football team. "Florence" in Italian is Firenze. So perhaps the perfume's name is cod French, or just something Olivier made up out of thin air. Wouldn't be the first time a niche perfumer picked a title out of a hat. Setting this little quibble aside, I was looking forward to an interesting melange of fruit notes in this one. I'd read about its luscious greengage plum accord, and hoped it was every bit as hyper-realistic as other Creed accords had been. Indeed, for the first two minutes of wear, the plum is beautiful. It smells sweet, delicate, full of complex stray notes that stretch from "grapey" to "pear-like," and back to full-on plum once again. It's a short and decidedly wonderful ride.

Then the plum exits, stage left. Enter synthetic, fresh, rosy-woody Calone notes. I've smelled this before, a supple, nondescript, airy modern cologne, edged with expensive aroma chemicals, but banal nonetheless. Hints of cedar, dry citrus (grapefruit?), and a lightly spiced floral backdrop - presumably carnation - all comprise a silvery-grey sheen that is as forgettable as can be. It's surprising that something so well made could still smell so patently uninspired and tedious. Add to the dreariness the fact that AF lasts about four hours with generous application in high heat, and you have a perfume that ought to be an option only for the hyper-wealthy who don't know any better. The original version, reviewed here, is still widely available at merchants online, and via contacts at the Creed Boutique in NY or Paris. I haven't tried it yet, but I hope the "Encore" version smells a few nods better than its progenitor.


  1. I was also disappointed in this, and by the feminine Creeds in general. It would indeed seem there are no iconic classics, as there are for men. AF struck me as pretty mainstream and pedestrian, and has reinforced my tendency to tune out to the whole range now.

    1. Well I wouldn't necessarily tune out to the whole range, although as far as the "Femme" line goes, I can see not being enthused about them. Most of the masculines are unisex, so Creed's insistence of discerning between gender within their line works against them. With the exception of Himalaya, Bois du Portugal, and maybe GIT, a woman shouldn't have any problem with the masculine range. I suspect women could use Aventus to better effect than most men also, but don't quote me on that.


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