We are somewhere in Paris.

In an apartment. An empty apartment. The apartment of a certain ‘Laurence’.

But something is not quite right. Things are not as they seem.

Things are not as they should be.

Laurence, the main protagonist appears to be absent.

Equipped with brand new cameras, we are invited, like detectives, to comb this apartment and photograph the most relevant clues to unlock the Secret of Laurence Cottet.

Traces of struggle, a suspicious red stain on the carpet, a bloody toothbrush, coffee beans in a purse…

What really happened here? 

Recently on RWX, we solved The Mystery of Louise Delage.

Louise Delage: Like My Addiction” was a sublime alcohol awareness campaign from France highlighting the difficulties of spotting addiction in friends or loved ones.

This time around, AddictAide have tackled the equally taboo issue of female alcoholism.

As the President of AddictAide commented:

“It is only with the right keys of reading that one is able to detect, to correctly interpret the signs that characterise an addiction. AddictAide offers these keys to open paths to healing.” 

Unlike Louise, created from scratch to highlight a photogenic form of social alcoholism, Laurence is real, not a fictional character.

Laurence Cottet is a wealthy woman, who has a brilliant career in large company.

Laurence is neither a murderer, nor a KGB agent, nor a vampire. 

Laurence is an alcoholic.

The “game” gives us the opportunity to look behind the scenes of an unknown entity: the reality of her daily life as a chronic alcoholic woman.

All along the clues were there for us to work this out.

Traces of struggle? The consequences of a general carelessness: broken furniture not replaced, wine stains on the carpet never cleaned… The toothbrush? Lack of personal hygiene caused by her dependence on alcohol (bleeding gums are one of the first symptoms of severe liver disease). Coffee beans? Crunchy, full of flavour and ideal for disguising bad breath.


Laurence’s apartment is meticulously reconstructed. And thanks to many clues littering the place on first glance, we jump to a very different set of conclusions.

“The secret of Laurence, is also the daily reality of millions of women, who like her, fight each day between the imperative need to drink, imposed by their pathology and the imperious need to save appearances, imposed by our society.”

(Quote by Amine Benyamina, Pyschologist/ Designer)

In less than one month, nearly 7,000 players visited Laurence’s apartment – both in real life and online.

Not one was able to identify her secret.

As people in recovery, we may all recognise aspects of her apartment. And the reasons behind those piles of dirty clothes, bottles hidden away and the dust piling up on the mantlepiece.

We also know how easy it is to slip into this type of ‘life’. And how unlikely it is that others, be they friends or family, would necessarily become aware that we had a problem.

So, in essence, The Secret of Laurence Collet campaign delivers a fundamentally strong message of hope: the stigma of alcoholism must be recognised, addressed and reduced. 

With the right blend of care and treatment, ‘alcoholics’ can be helped to lead the lives we all deserve.




Play ‘The Secret of Laurence’ (choose English from the menu)