For over 100 years the brand Alvarez Gomez is synonymous with tradition, distinction, quality and style.
It all started when three boys (Herminio Alvarez Gómez, Belarmino Gómez and Emilio Vuelta Gómez) natives from León, Northern Province of Spain, decided to abandon their home and move to Madrid, in search of fortune.
They were first cousins and started their activity together in a drugstore of a relative, located on Peligros street in Madrid. As it was usual with apprentices at that time, they worked in the store during the day but also spent there the night, as the store was also their home, and their beds, part of their wages.
After a while, the owner of the store decided to retire and sell the store, circumstance and opportunity that the cousins took advantage of by buying it, a very important step for their future.
In 1899, steady on their position of fragrance dealers, they had to move to another store, because the building was going to be demolished. They moved to a new store in 2 Sevilla Street in Madrid. That was when, for the first time “ALVAREZ GOMEZ” appeared as the sign of the store. They choose the two second names of Herminio, because he was the one who had made a biggest investment.
Herminio was very enthusiastic about theatre and variety performances, which could be found in the closeness of the store (Gran Vía Street), this, together with his open character, helped him to know people from all condition who visited the store as friends or customers, and eventually set social gatherings at the back room of the store.
In a unique and pleasant ambient, in which the perfume scents got mixed with the tobacco and café aromas from the café next door, they talked, discussed , conspire and finally tried to solve the problems of the country. They were people from the theatre and the entertainment world, bullfighters, politicians (Eduardo Dato), authors (Pedro Muñoz Seca) and travelling salespersons whose mobility and huge geographical culture, quite unusual at that time, made of them the perfect bearers of news, hoaxes, pettyfoggery and curiosities. This, together with the lack of media, made them the most relevant people to listen to.
It was there where in 1912, when one of these travelers brought a formula for an “Eau de Cologne” from center-European origin, whose essential elements: Lemon, bergamot, rosemary, geranium, etc, could be found of much better quality in Spain. The founders, who were used to handle pure scents from the country since their childhood, decided that their cologne had to be like this: Clean, fresh and pure.
In 1912 they started manufacturing in a traditional way, in the basement of the store, the “Agua de Colonia Concentrada Alvarez Gómez”, as we know it nowadays.
It´s bottle with Art Deco design is completely familiar, not only in many Spanish homes, but also in some of the best and more prestigious hotels and restaurants in Spain.
During the tough of the post civil war era, the nephews of the founders, struggle to feed a market lacking of almost everything. This second generation, represented by the tandem Rafael Rodriguez Vuelta, and Plácido Fernandez Alvarez, gave a great impulse and development to the company.
The first of them Rafael, the most audacious, travelled across Europe searching for novelties to ease the current scarcity, working his fingers to the bone. He started the expansion of the company with the opening of new stores and developed the Alvarez Gómez seal of excellence, class and elegance that has granted the fame and prestigious we have today.
The second, Placido, numbers man, handled the manufacture and distribution of our “Agua de Colonia Alvarez Gómez”
During the last 25 years, very relevant landmarks have been achieved. The construction of a factory in which the production was standardized, the creation of new products, the development of a national distribution net, the professionalization of the different areas of the company aiming to recruit the best professionals without forgetting the familiar character of the company.
Along these years there has been many people, employees, collaborators that gave their best to this house making possible with their effort, that today we are still here.
Today a fourth generation direct from that moment, 100 years past, are involved in the project of keep the brand updated in the extremely competitive world we live in, betting on exportation and the development of new products . We are determined to have Alvarez Gómez become the tradition of this new century.