The story of a very old pharmacy, whose operators are eventually switched from tinctures to care products and, thus, in the 21st century. A century of success, so that eventually a much larger cosmetics company, the Whole buying. This is what happened with the New York brand Kiehl’s, which was in the year 2000, L’oréal. The story can also be quite self-sufficient, such as in the case of Santa Maria Novella in Florence, of much the older pharmacy, which today is still the holder and not less successful.

just look around You once in Florence, where this pharmacy was founded in the middle ages. On the Cathedral square, at the railway station, in the Hotel: tourists Everywhere paper bags to carry around with the historical coat-of-arms and the Logo. You come from the Via della Scala, an unspectacular road, tight, too rumbling and not a bit representative.

in Contrast, the interior seems to be the farmacia with the heavy polished wooden doors, the beautifully restored frescoes and the neo-Gothic tables and a counter the same luxury. The sellers in the entrance room, look in their blazers as investment advisers.

a Little further back of the old pharmacy space. Sold here since the 13th century. Century Dominican monks mixtures, the plague curb. For example, a water from distilled roses, the Acqua di Rose. For less than 20 Euro it is, so to speak, the entry-level product. In the middle ages, people took advantage of the refreshing, and above all the antiseptic action of the Tonic. The rose water was the first step in the direction of perfume. In 1533, it created a bergamot-based fragrance for Catherine de ‘ Medici, who married in that year Henry of Orléans, the future king of France.

It smells of Eau de Cologne

In the European nobility, in the Church, anyway, around the fragrances and Soaps from Florence, quickly. In 1612 the pharmacy opened as the Officina Profumo Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella its doors for all the Florentines, what is called as the birth of the brand. With her, the monks began to devote more time to the care of the body, although the traditional Alchemismus maintained and in the Form of the distillery furthermore, it has been practiced.

In the second half of the 19th century. Century coined the secularization of Europe. In 1866, the monastery and the pharmacy went officially to the city of Florence. To the internal ownership of the changed conditions, however, little. On the last Church pharmacy head of his nephew, Cesare Augusto Stefani followed. Since then, production has remained in the hands of the Stefanis.

Until 1989, that went well. Then the sales fell for the first time, the numbers live up to expectations, there was a lack of money. The rescue brought Eugenio Alphandery, the Scion of a wealthy Italian family, who had come with a textile factory to fortune. With cosmetic Alphandéry had nothing on the hat. He is an engineer and business man. Stefani asked him to invest money and Knowledge in the cracked dispensary, he said. Three years later, a 100-percent had become of a 51 per cent stake Job. Like an engineer makes a fuchste be Alphandery in products, prices and production, and analyzed, how could the company up and Running again. His approach is to be expanding its range.