At 20 years old, the daughter of Daniela and Dimo ​​Kumanov, who created the first perfume museum in Africa, has her own line of fragrances

By Boryana Antimova, Trud Daily, Sofia

  • I was a child with many talents, and our parents wanted the best for me
  • She created her first perfume when she was only 17 years old
  • As much as 16 thousand kilometers from their homeland, the Kumanovs remain great patriots

“Sofia is wonderful! And I like Bulgaria a lot,” says Christina. Otherwise, she does not fail to emphasize that she is Bulgarian. She was born in Cape Town, South Africa and is the youngest perfumer in the world. At the age of 20, she created her own line of fragrances – “Le Grand secret” by Christina Kumanov. Interestingly, the model-looking beauty combines the art of fragrance with a very serious major – she is a student of international law in Maastricht, Netherlands.

Chrissy is in her parents’ homeland for the second time and is delighted with Sofia. She enjoys the walk along “Vitoshka” street and the square in front of the National Palace of Culture; of the sight of the beautifully falling water of the fountains, of the open spaces, the sun, the pleasant breeze and the feeling of freedom. And the 30 degrees heat is even pleasant for the African girl, who is used to 40 degrees in the summer.

She grew up in Cape Town in the family of two emigrants – Daniela and Dimo ​​Kumanov. “I was a child with many talents, and my parents wanted the best for me – to develop my full potential at a very early age. They were my inspiration and driving force to become who I am today,” Cristina Kumanov says excitedly.

She is a descendant of famous Plovdiv families, known for their commercial acumen, spirit and entrepreneurship. Dimo is from an old family from Kazanlak, his ancestors exported rose and lavender oil. Daniela is from the family of owners of one of the largest Bulgarian vinegar factories in Plovdiv. Daniela and Dimo Kumanov ​​created the first perfume museum in Africa and their own fragrance line – “Kumanov Perfumery”.

Christina remembers her first touch with the magic of fragrances. When she was 9 years old, she was fascinated by the perfume that her mother smells of. She asks what this amazing fragrance is, and Daniela takes her to the studio and shows her how she created it.

Little Christina was fascinated with the amazing world of perfume and this first impression overflows into strong love and passion. Her mother discovered that Chrissy has an extremely strong nose and flair for fragrances, and she begins to spend more and more time with her in perfumery.

She feels like the discoverer of new, unique fragrances, and Daniela teaches her step by step how to create a unique perfume. She shows her how she must record the addition of every milligram of a certain scent, because otherwise she will have no way of reproducing the unique scent later. For the perfume business, Daniela began to prepare her seriously from the age of 12, 8th grade. Christina helps her mother during all the holidays and every day after school.

She created her first perfume when she was only 17 years old. Daniela explains that it takes a long time to create a line. At least 10 projects must be worked on – face cream and serum and several men’s and women’s perfumes. “Christina would fly from the Netherlands to Cape Town whenever she had free time, 4-5 times a year to work on her fragrance line,” says Daniela.

“To be honest, it took me more than three years to create my line,” says Christina Kumanov . – I am constantly developing new ideas and combinations of new aromas that I discover. A leading scent that stands out in most of my creations is the lovely jasmine.”

How are her fragrances received among friends, fellow students? “It is not possible for one perfume to please everyone, everyone has their fans who can really appreciate their smell. My new line of perfumes has definitely sparked the love of every person I’ve shown it to so far, which is quite interesting,” shares the young lady.

When she was 16-17 years old, Christina also created a perfume for one of the largest diamond dealer in Africa – Shimansky – “My Girl Light”.

“First I had to specify what was his whole idea behind the fragrance and what nuances and associations to evoke and leave in the mind of the consumer – says Christina. “When Shimansky answered all my questions, I knew exactly how to create it, and at the end of the process, the fragrance achieved every single element he was looking for.”

Together with her mother Christina, creates perfumes for Hollywood celebrities and Arab princesses who visit the museum and perfumery. Presidents, ambassadors, princes, princesses, singers, artists come. And when they call them and ask them to close for the whole day, they understand that a very important person is coming. “My current favorite perfume is Baccaret Rouge by Maison Francis Kurkdjian,” says the lady.

The beautiful and talented Christina Kumanov is a celebrity in South Africa, she is invited to many shows on South African television, she is written about in the local press and in online publications. “The most common question I get from the media is, ‘How do you know you’re good at making perfume?'” My answer is clear: “My nose tells me,” laughs Christina.

The ambitious lady has once again completed her second year of studying international law in Maastricht with distinction. She chose this university not by chance. It was there that the “Treaty on European Union” was created in 1992.

“I feel strength and determination in myself and I believe that there is a need for people like me to try to make our world better and fairer. I’m a Virgo, and well-structured arguments come naturally to me,” Christina explains. Additional motivation for the excellent results in the exams gives her the desire to specialize with a master’s degree in criminal law at the University of Barcelona, ​​Spain.

Maastricht provides her with peace and comfort. She shared that she lives in a beautiful luxury apartment, but she is fully focused on her studies. She likes that in this city – an international center – she can meet interesting people from all over the world. From Maastricht she used every free time to travel around Europe, to which she belonged by heritage but did not know.

In the future, Christina Kumanov will develop in two directions – her own perfume company and second – as a lawyer in international law. “I do not plan to return to South Africa permanently, but I will gladly visit this incredibly beautiful and exotic country often. At the moment, I plan to realize myself in Europe,” she says.

Christina is proud of her parents, Daniela and Dimo ​​Kumanov, who are respected and valued in South Africa, and the brand Kumanov Perfumery” is known not only in the country, but also around the world. The perfume museum they created is the first in Africa and one of the largest in the world. The unique thing about this project is that there is a perfumery attached to the museum, where every visitor can immerse himself in the wonderful world of scents.

Daniela and Dimo: First perfume museum in Africa is Bulgarian

The idea for the museum is Dimo’s, who collects perfume bottles. When his collection reached about 5,000 bottles, he decided to arrange the exhibits. The beautiful majestic building of the museum is relatively new, built in the Cape Duch style. It is very tastefully furnished.

The unique collection of over 6,000 perfume bottles, the oldest – the Egyptian ones, are 2-3 thousand years old. There are both Phoenician and Roman bottles. The Kumanovs also own one of the world’s largest collections of Lalique bottles, with one of them selling for 25-30 thousand dollars today.

The museum

The unique collection of over 6,000 perfume bottles, some 2-3 thousand years old, is arranged in solid wood cabinets.

Crossing the street, every visitor finds himself in the kingdom of aromas. The perfumery is in an old 250-year-old Victorian building. Around it, in a beautiful garden, there is an open-air art gallery – dozens of sculptures by the most famous South African artists are for sale.

The garden around perfumery

In the beautiful and sophisticated interior of the perfumery, every guest can buy perfumes with the brand “Kumanov perfumery” or be creative – create their own fragrance and cream and take it home. There, guests learn about the process – what stages the creation of the perfume consists of, what oils are mixed, how long they have to stay, how they are filled into bottles, how the ingredients are described…

The perfumery

Both buildings are located in the town of Franschhoek, a French suburb of Cape Town. It is built in a European style and is the food and wine capital of the entire continent of Africa. It is extremely expensive, like Monaco in Europe.

As much as 16 thousand kilometers from their homeland, the Kumanovs remain great patriots. In their museum, they have given a prominent place to Bulgarian rose oil and tell their visitors about their homeland. That’s how they brought up Christina.

“Bulgaria is where my heart is, it is where I feel most at home and most relaxed. The rich Bulgarian culture and spirituality is like no other. The nature, the people… I can never get enough of their beauty and uniqueness, especially our amazing cuisine!”, says the young Bulgarian, born in Africa, excitedly.

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