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  1. #1

    Default San Francisco quickie

    I took an afternoon off from my conference in Oakland and headed to my beloved San Francisco to revive pleasant memories of previous visits. For example, every time I'm there I visit the St. Francis hotel and ride the glass elevator up to the top floor for the great view.

    But I also checked out a few fragrance places, although I missed fragrance week by a couple of days. Tried some stuff at Nordstrom's, IO Capri was interesting, but not enough to buy. At Sephora I liked John Varvatos Vintage (not available in Germany, I believe). I was shocked at the incompetence of the staff at Neiman Marcus, who hadn't the first idea of what perfume is all about. Their Creed samples were all in a mess as well, so I didn't get to take any Epicea home, which I liked best of all the Creeds tried there, just some Erolfa. Green Valley is quite nice and I find Vintage Tabarome superior to Millésime. What else they had on display I knew. Of Lutens I tried Santal blanc, which is beautiful but too feminine for me to enjoy wearing. Cedre is kind of boring really and Datura noir did not captivate me either, but my nose may have been tiring. However, a bit later at the diptyque boutique I smelled Philosykos and that was the best of the whole day. Le Trois was nice, but no more than that. The SA at Diptyque was a very friendly young French woman, who had worked in Emden (Ostfriesland) for a while and spoke some German. What I didn't like was that her colleague was telling a customer who asked her about this, that Diptyque perfums were all natural, no synthetics. I understand it's hard to explain to people that synthetic may not necessarily mean cheap/low quality/unhealthy etc. but I would not feel good about lying. I wasn't keen on getting into an argument however. I then went up Sutter to visit "Rare Essences," but only discovered a Brazilian Beauty Salon at the address listed online. Is the place gone, or just moved?
    Needless to say I had Espresso in North Beach and loaded up on XOX truffles, but that belongs in the chocoholic forum . Please do let me know about academic job opportunities in the bay area

  2. #2

    Default Re: San Francisco quickie

    Yes, Rare Essences closed, but I don't know for sure when.

    I lived in San Francisco for eight years, and your report reinforces something I've said many times in this forum: fragrance shopping in San Francisco leaves a lot to be desired. Your experience at Neiman's is par for the course. I have never had a positive experience in shopping there.

    Nordstorm is hit-or-miss. Just before I left the city, it seemed they were improving.

    Saks is only slightly better, but I find I have a better experience if I go in knowing exactly what I'm looking for.

    I don't ask for much, just courtesy and helpfulness.

    Did you try visiting Jacqueline's in Union Square?
    Life is a banquet...and I got botulism! -- Me

  3. #3

    Default Re: San Francisco quickie

    It was on the list, but i somehow missed it. Gives me a reason to come back, though

  4. #4

    Default Re: San Francisco quickie

    Quote Originally Posted by BlueDevilSF
    Your experience at Neiman's is par for the course. I have never had a positive experience in shopping there.
    Same goes for me. Every Neiman Marcus SA I have met is, in abbreviated terms, ASMR (which stands for arrogant, snobby, mean, and rude). One time at the Northbrook, Illinois NM, I waited 30 minutes for service, just to be thrown samples of Acqua di Gio and Armani Mania instead of the Creed samples that I requested.

    Plus, they don't accept Visa or MasterCard in-store (just American Express and their store card), which is a blow to debit card fans like me, as debit cards run on either the Visa or MasterCard networks. There are ways around it, though: Oddly enough, you can buy printable "virtual" gift cards on the Neiman Marcus website with your Visa or MasterCard that you can use in-store. Or you can buy an American Express "universal" gift card at your local supermarket or pharmacy (again, with the payment method of your choice) and use it at NM.
    It's really quite pleasant, except for the smell (...)
    -"Mama", My Chemical Romance

    Vintage Dior Leather Oud for sale (US only)

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