It’s now time to complete my little guide to perfume shopping in NYC! My first installment took us along Fifth Avenue; my darling Kenny and I wore out our noses at Bergdorf Goodman, Henri Bendel, and Saks Fifth Avenue. Sounds like a full day, doesn’t it? It does - but I still had four (!) more places to drag Kenny. This required a train ride downtown to the West Village, and later on some eastbound walking. We purchased Kenny a MetroCard, and off we went to our first stop.
(picture borrowed from NYMag.com)
Every fragonerd must pay his or her respects to the veritable shrine of niche perfumery, Aedes de Venustas, located on the lovely Christopher Street in the West Village. Aedes is a boudoir filled with luxe and hard-to-find niche lines; also, the two cutest dogs in the world live there, so pet them if you get a chance! Kenny and I went straight to the Malle display, both of us agreeing that Musc Ravageur is an essential fragrance to own (although I’m not much of a Malle fan beyond Musc Ravageur!). We poured over every nook and cranny of the store, sniffing everything we could get our hands on. I wanted to bring the Serge Lutens cabinet home with me!
Some of the highlights of our sniffing include: Amouage Gold Woman (I have this and love it; Kenny was wide-eyed over it), Serge Lutens Chergui (a holy grail fragrance for the both of us), L’Artisan Dzing (I need this!) and Tea for Two (Kenny said I need it), and Diptyque Tam Dao (a favorite of mine that I think Kenny needed to sniff; he enjoyed it).
After Aedes, Kenny and I took a gelato and cookie break, and then walked over to MiN New York. MiN is a new store in the East Village, an atelier and apothecary combined. The layout of the store is wonderful and the selection of products made me gasp. I saw Spanish apothecary products my grandmother used on me as a child, and Kenny nearly fainted over the Frapin fragrances. I ran straight to the Miller Harris display, and the two of us squealed over the Keiko Mecheri table. I cannot stress this enough: MiN New York is an absolutely necessary stop for any fragrance enthusiast. Any place where I can buy Amouage, By Kilian, metal bunny paperweights, and get a cup of coffee all at once is a slice of heaven on earth!
Some of the highlights of our sniffing include: Frapin 1270 (Kenny instantly bought a bottle!), Penhaligon’s Amaranthine (I have a decant of this! I need to dig it up and review it), Keiko Mecheri Cuir Cordoba (I love this, and I knew Kenny would too - see Nathan's review here), and Carner Barcelona Tardes (Birgit’s review piqued my curiosity, and both Kenny and I agreed that it was the best of the line).
After MiN, I dragged Kenny around the corner and across the street to the Santa Maria Novella/LAFCO store. The Santa Maria Novella store is great if you’re one of those crazy people who likes to buy your friends housewarming presents, and stuffs their closets and dressers with potpourri. The store is a veritable Candyland for those who like all aspects of their life to be scented. I own their potpourri, their soaps, their skincare...I can go on and on. I also love gifting people with LAFCO candles. I can’t help it! I wanted Kenny to sniff the SMN colognes, and we also had a random woman follow us from MiN to SMN and I was able to help direct her to some lovely home fragrances to give as Christmas gifts! I really need to start charging people for my help.
Some of the highlights of our sniffing include: SMN Calycanthus (see my review here; I need to get a bottle ASAP!), SMN Carnation (I didn’t like this as much as I thought I would), and SMN Vetiver (Kenny preferred Calycanthus; I thought the Vetiver was OK).
Our final stop of the afternoon was at Le Labo, as there was no way I was sending Kenny back to New Jersey without a stop at one of my favorite stores! It’s silly to even include a ‘highlights’ section, as there isn’t a Le Labo fragrance that I don’t like. Rose 31 is a holy grail fragrance for me, as is Santal 33. We both drooled over the Olfactorium, and I decided that I need to buy a bottle of Labdanum 18 as soon as I can. Kenny also pointed out the laundry detergent (oh, to have all of my clothes smell of Rose 31!), and we swooned over the candles.
With our time at Le Labo complete, it was time to take Kenny back to Penn Station and for me to go home! I hope you enjoyed this guide to NYC shopping! I plan on, in the future, elaborating on some of these shops and writing about other stores we didn’t get to visit last weekend! Let me know in the comments what you think about this.