For Ralph Lauren’s winter media event announcing the forthcoming release of their newest fragrance, Midnight Romance, the idea of newly-ignited young romance and passionate desires came to life as guests received pre-event tweets from male suitors who tried to woo them in under 140 words. “Can’t wait until we see each other from across the room” or “Tonight will be magical for both of us” were some of the sweet notes attendees said they received. Once the event started, guests were delivered hand written notes that complimented their appearance: “The blue in your sweater makes your eyes sparkle” and “You look wonderful under the moonlight.”

The décor—pink and black—reflected the packaging and colors of the product, which launches in April, while glowing orbs lit the balcony of the event space, Glass Houses, which overlooks the Hudson River. A singer crooned sultry, romantic tunes accompanied by a pianist. A large, ticking clock was placed center stage and, of course, the stroke of midnight indicated the ad campaign debut with videos directed Bruce Weber. Alexandre Choueiri, President of International Designer Collections and European designer fragrance at L’Oréal USA, took to the floor to explain the significance of the launch in the U.S. market.

In 1978, Ralph Lauren expanded his lifestyle brand to encompass the world of fragrance, starting with Lauren for women and Polo for men. Since then Ralph Lauren Fragrances has introduced 45 products. To date, their top three ranking fragrances are Polo Red, Polo Blue and Romance. Now, Midnight Romance can be added to that list. Called a “floriental fragrance,” Midnight Romance’s top notes offer raspberry, Italian bergamot and juicy lychee. Mid-notes capitalize on jasmine sambac, freesia and peony, perhaps the most highlighted of the flowers, while base notes include black vanilla and iris absolute. Most interesting about the fragrance is that it was developed by both a male and a female perfumer. Alberto Morillas and Honorine Blanc each brought a ‘his’ and ‘hers’ scent to create a sensual embrace of new love while building upon a modern contradiction. “We wanted to play up the idea of contrast, the sensual side and a rugged side,” said Guillaume de Lesquen, President, Ralph Lauren Fragrances Worldwide.  “We worked with both a male and female master perfumer to bring two points of view that create a modern contradiction.”

“This is the next evolution. It’s also the next story line,” Guillaume said, adding, “Romance, which is celebrating its 15th anniversary, tells the classic, fairytale love story between a real couple, Nacho [Figueras, the face of Polo fragrances] and his wife Delfina [Blaquier].” Guillaume explained that Midnight Romance is the passionate side of romance.

“It’s about new and unknown love. And we wanted to bring this new sensual dimension to our classic trademark.”
In its ad campaign, Midnight Romance, which will retail for $94 per 100 ml per bottle, uses models Anna Selezneva and Ryan Heavyside to portray young lovers experiencing the passion and extreme intensity that only first time love can bring. Just one more timeless story Ralph Lauren has captured in a bottle.