For the last few years the only real places to find a selection of niche perfume lines have been Joyce & Lane Crawford, which happen to be joined at the hip at a corporate level anyway and may well share the same buyer.
On the garment side IT launched a few years back carrying edgy fashion forward lines and picking up some that were once exclusive to Joyce (Comme de Garcons). For their second act, this is just over the last few years, IT has been financing standalone stores in increasingly pricy real estate locations in Central, Causeway Bay and the Canton Road vicinity in TST and Festival Walk.
Until now the Comme des Garcons perfume line was the only one on offer in the CdG outlets and some IT stores. In just the last couple of months, though, IT has taken on the highly rated Histoires de Parfums collection and now the full line of Nasomatto Extraits, also given a full frontal display in the Causeway Bay flagship store next to the HdP line. Just a few feet away, right beside the main counter, is a head high tower of the new 'untitled' Margiela on offer. Could be time to bring in the designers and clear a bit of space for a dedicated fragrant counter slot, then?
With Joyce featuring the full Editions de Parfum Frederic Malle line (complete with candles and one 'telephone box.), Lane Crawford embracing the Amouage line (Opus Trio is on the way) and now IT introducing these two uber-niche lines it looks like things could be picking up for perfumistas and those new to the game in HK. The IT store in Causeway Bay sees an enormous amount of traffic from hip, young professionals and putting these cutting edge brands in front of this audience is going to be an interesting thing to watch - all power to IT for pushing the envelope.
In terms of pricing Nasomatto are almost exactly the same as retail at Luckyscent in the States, but then IT have never been shy of extracting the best bang for their buck from their customers. Interestingly, this is in contrast to Lane Crawford, who decided to offer the Amouage line at possibly the best price anywhere - by my calculation at least 30% less than retail in US & Europe. It seems LC's thoughtful pricing and the demand for Amouage from HK customers is working - the stuff is selling very well by all accounts. Let's see if the more acquired taste of Nasomatto can do the same with local punters.
Last edited by mr. reasonable; 16th July 2010 at 05:24 AM.
Looks like the foray into fragrance is still an experiment.
Apart from the CdG store in Icehouse St. which is carrying the full line, the Icehouse St. & Causeway Bay IT stores seem to be rotating things. Histoires de Parfums stock has pretty well run out (encouraging news for such a recent launch) and a request to try Nasomatto Absinthe resulted in much finding of keys and a trip to the store room . . . there's a new line in C Bay but I forget the name.
I have a request in for HdP 1725 so let's see if the phone rings when/if new stock comes in . . . I hope someone at IT gets his or her head around the fact that there's an opportunity here for them and that it could be time to find a fragrance buyer to pull it all together. A couple of the young staff were keen to talk about the scents and had clearly acquainted themselves with what they were selling - a good sign. Histoire de Parfums & Nasomatto were a ballsy start - let's hope we see some follow thru.
PS A couple of months later and I am happy to report IT Icehouse St. has restocked the HdP line.
The basement store near Food Street has put in a dedicated corner for scents, candles and bath products. Currently HdP, Nasomatto, Herve, Neotantric and some CdG + Monocle 1 & 2. Looks like it is here to stay - great!
Let's see if the new flagship store at 1 Hysan Ave in Causeway Bay has a dedicated fragrance section?
Last edited by mr. reasonable; 9th February 2011 at 11:05 AM.