Essence of sicily

Ortigia is the essence of Sicily - a synthesis of the intoxicatiing smells, colours and mystery of the Mediterranean's largest, oldest and culturally most heterogeneous island.

The name Ortigia comes from the small island that lies at the edge of the ancient fortified city of Siracusa, on Sicily's southern coast. The streets of Ortigia are crumbling baroque façades of great splendour  looking out on 3 side of the sea.

The island’s history, reflected in the uniquely rich and layered culture that is found in Sicily today, has inspired the creation of the Ortigia range.



Ortigia is a small Italian soap and scent company based in Florence. It was founded in Sicily in 2006 by Sue Townsend. The luxurious range of soaps, scents, creams, candles and lotions are formulated using natural products indigenous to Sicily and inspired by the aesthetics, colours and scents of Italy’s most historic and tropical region.

The inspiration is based on Sicilian plants: Zagara – Orange Blossom; Lime di Sicilia – Sicilian Lime; Melograno – Pomegranate; Lavanda – Lavender; Fico d’India; Mandorla – Almond; all indigenous to the luxuriant gardens of Sicily. The base of all the products is natural perfume and natural ingredients: olive oil, vegetable glycerine, and organic colours.

Paraben-free, the range uses traditional products with modern ethics and integrity. All of Ortigia’s products are especially made by small family companies who pride themselves on the quality of their products.

The packaging, designed by Sue Townsend, is highly decorative and draws on exotic Sicilian images and colours. The soap boxes are hand made with silver foil and embossed lettering. The glass bottles and candle jars are die stamped with evocative images of leopards and palm trees.



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