7 customers and they have a full-time box folder?
There's a reason Barneys is constantly on the brink of insolvency...
That being said, I really like the SF Barneys, though it sounds exactly identical to the Chicago one, right down to the occasionally unhelpful staff and the almost-empty store.
If you walk in with higher confidence, they'll be way nicer. And high end salespeople, if they're good, recognize regulars. If you go back, find the same lady who sold you your stuff this time. If she's on the ball, she'll recognize you and be way friendlier next time.
I still remember my first time walking into Neiman Marcus to sniff the Creeds. I was petrified. Now everyone there knows me and they're amazingly friendly.
If you're going to be a crazed fragrance nut and full-fledged Basenotes weirdo, the niche selection at Barneys is indispensable (a few afternoons sampling there will save you hundreds and hundreds of dollars in samples bought online).
Thanks for the story!