The highlights of my vacation V (the last one)

Olfactory experience in the Beauty Affair

Russian version - click here

On the Königsallee next to Chanel there is a cosy boutique with a very special assortment – Beauty Affair. It’s amazing how much different niche perfumery brands are represented in a rather small space because of the smart design. A lot of brands I never heard of or smelled yet. It was quite overwhelming to stay there with a pleasant thought how much more there is to discover and desperately thinking what to start with. The carefully selected brands there don’t repeat the assortment of the neighbour perfumeries – Schnitzler and Douglas located in a five minutes walking distance.

A lot of us had an unpleasant experience with tiresome sales assistants who either were trying to astound you with a popular novelty or just to sale you something. My experience in Beauty Affair was completely different. Richard, the manager of the shop gave me enough time to look around and smell on my own. Later he asked me what perfume I mostly wear and joined me in my smelling around tour. Sometimes he gave me suggestions based on my preferences and interests as if observing my choices he was trying to figure out what smells do I like. Actually it was an ideal customer experience – someone who is trying to understand not only your olfactory preferences, but also a need you have at the certain moment. He was following me, giving suggestions, smelling together with me, listening to my comments, giving his own sometimes – it was more like a guided tour in a perfumer’s museum where I could decide where to go and could count on a professional support at any moment. His female assistant (whom I think also speaks Russian) seemed also to be very capable and helpful.

His selling tactic, if there was any, was not pushy. He simply let the perfumes do their job – to seduce… A kind of flirting dance where you are invited to expose yourself to a seductive power of perfume, but without any obligations. May be it’s the only selling technique suitable in the tempting world or perfume.

I’ve seen a package of Rose 31 from Le Labo there – a perfume I heard a lot about and wanted to smell. But unfortunately there was no tester. So, Richard decided to open a box for me. I said that it wouldn’t be necessary as I was not sure of buying it. But Richard insisted to do it as he wanted to smell it himself too (or pretended to do it to make me comfortable – who knows ;-). It was a nice slightly spicy and peppery rose. To compare with other rose fragrances he suggested smelling two roses of Frederic Malle. To smell them he used glass hemispheres – an extraordinary but efficient way to try a perfume. Extraordinary and special are the words best describing my experience there. A lot of niche perfumes collected there were also striking with their appearance, presentation or concept.

Richard has also introduced me to his own creation – a masculine fig scent made for the Beauty Affair only. It’s a nice green fig fragrance – less sweet than Primeur Figuer and is more reminiscent of a leaf than a fruit. As a representation of a fig leaf is very realistic – I could smell the dark green slightly rough surface of the leaf covered with soft fluff. Unfortunately my hands were covered with other perfumes and I couldn’t try this one on my skin and evaluate how it develops. But it’s really promising and worth to try.

Finally we finished by smelling some oriental perfumes of Rasasi. Some of them were amazing like Oudh smelling Esraa, some of them were a bit strange for my nose. There was a kind of oriental version of Angel by Thierry Mulger and a nice fruity sweet Osmanthus scent. I couldn’t remember the names anymore and was full from impressions and scents. It was time to stop. The card he gave me was scented with the Oudh smelling Esraa – the highlight of this olfactory experience.

I definitely recommend to visit this shop together with its neighbour Schnitzler – their assortments complete each other perfectly and both have a pleasant customer service.

Königsallee 30 (KÖ-Center)
40212 Düsseldorf
Tel. (0211) 8549211
Fax (0211) 8549199
Email: info@beauty-affair.net

4 opmerkingen:

chayaruchama zei

Hello, Max !

I see you visited the fascinating couple in Dusseldorf...

They came to the Spring Fling Sniffapalooza in NYC this year, and were eager and curious about everything.

I'm glad they were kind to you !
Sometimes, as you've noted- simply sniffing can be made unpleasant by aggressive, haughty owners.

It's fun to read your thoughts.

Dikke kus-

AromaX zei

Hi Chayaruchama,

Nice to see you dropping by. I am glad you had fun to read my thoughts.

Your comment makes me very curious. About where you from (NYC)? And your relation to Spring Fling Sniffapalooza (never heard about before - would be nice to know more about it)? I am also curious about who was the second person of the couple next to Richard? Sorry if there are too much questions - curious, curious...

Well, I had a negative experience too at the same day a couple meters farther from the Beauty Affair at Chanel... But the positive sniffing made my day ;-)

Thanks for the Dikke Kus - I give you one back too.

See you around (here or at Andy)

chayaruchama zei

Ah, Max-

I live in Boston; I almost married in Groningen years ago, and Jenny van Veenen and I are friends- I love her.

Sniffapalooza is a community, in person and on-line-
And they get together and sponsor all sorts of events- a recent trip to Florence, last year to Paris, a Chanel Master Class,all sorts of things related to perfume.

[Folks like Chandler Burr are members.]

Richard's business partner is the thin blonde with the long hair-
I don't know the other lady.

When we had the spring event, people from all over the world came [ and are welcome !]-
That's how we met.
[They probably wrote it off as a 'business expense']

I am passionate about my senses, and like to help others enjoy the work of small, independent perfumers, like Andy, Liz Zorn, Serena Ava Franco, Neil Morris.
I also love to collaborate, when I can...

Hope that helps !

AromaX zei

Thank you, Chayaruchama. It helps indeed. Just in February this year I began my steps into perfumery and there is still a lot to discover - it's a small world and it's funny to see how soon you meet someone who mentions someone else you already knew ;-)

Sniffapalooza is an interesting place - I shall take a look.

Jenny - now I remember a blog entry "I love you Ida"... Are you also in her perfumemakinggroup? Almost married in Groningen? Not the most romantic city in the world, but I hope you still keep a lot of romantic moments about ;-)

Serena Ava Franco - AvaLux? So far I did try only her Tuberose Diabolique. Another names I still don't know, except Andy, of course. Shall search.

I understand what you mean about helping others to enjoy the work of individual perfumers - I mention Andy's name anytime I can to make people interested ;-)

Really nice to meet you - see you around. I've seen your blog is empty - mostly it's the easiest way to stay in touch. So, may be through a Sniffapalooza?