Puredistance Perfume Lounge Vienna – A Visit

My friend and fellow perfume lover E., who lives in London, was here on a visit for a few, short days and of course we grabbed the opportunity to make an appointment at the noble Puredistance Perfume Lounge, that is located on Franziskaner Platz in the first district of Vienna.

The lounge is a beautiful venue dedicated to showcase Puredistance’s three perfumes Puredistance I, Antonia and M.

If you have read my reviews of Puredistance I and Antonia you know what I think about these fragrances, so I was very curious to experience them in such an exclusive and luxurious ambience.

My friend and I were greeted by Veronika, who manages the lounge. She is there by appointment only, to make customers feel welcome and demonstrate the perfumes and crystal column flacons they can be accessorized with. I would have wished she would have been a bit more informed about the perfumes, though. My friend, who isn’t familiar with the line, asked several questions that, sadly, went unanswered. A luxury perfume deserves a dedicated person that sells it, and while Veronika was very nice and polite, she seemed astounded by our interest and the fact that we actually made a purchase. Her defeatist attitude put a little shadow over an otherwise lovely visit to this exceptional shrine to my favorite perfume.

The rooms are made up in black, white and gold. In glass vitrines scattered throughout the room like in an exclusive jewellery store, the perfumes are showcased. We could hold the heavy crystal columns available in translucent or black crystal, each weighs 750g (1.65 pounds). A burglar wouldn’t stand a chance if you defended yourself with one of these. 😉

We sampled the perfumes and enjoyed the fact that there was all the time we wanted, sitting comfortably in white leather arm chairs, sniffing and comparing notes.

I concentrated on M, since I already know the other two well. I am impressed with the gorgeous drydown. I need to wear it for a few more times before attempting a review though. But I managed to do the impossible and pry my husband away from his Polo Blue for a day to wear M. It smells divine on him, he even likes it himself and that is a feat unsurpassed in recent history.
Veronika generously gave us samples and my friend purchased Puredistance I and received the gold as well as the silver cap.
If you live in Vienna (I am looking at you Lady Jane Grey ;)) or are here on a visit, it is really worth experiencing the Puredistance Perfume Lounge, as long as it is still possible, I got the feeling this may not be forever.

Every perfumista will be delighted to smell beautiful perfume in such beautiful surroundings.

Picture source: my own (I am sorry, I wish I had a better camera!), first pic from Puredistance website.

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About Olfactoria

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18 Responses to Puredistance Perfume Lounge Vienna – A Visit

  1. Tara says:

    Wow, that lounge sounds amazing. Like you say, you wonder how long they can sustain something like that but glad you got to experience it. The photos are great BTW.

    Know what you mean about being served by someone who is not as enthusiastic/knowledgeable about the perfume as you, the customer, are. At least they gave you samples and you had lots of time. Probably nicer to experience with a friend than on your own. Thanks for reporting back and looking forward to the M review. So funny your husband was willing to forego Polo Blue for a while – talk about from one extreme to amother 🙂

    • Olfactoria says:

      Yes, my dear husband has made a lot of progress since yesterday 😉 He really likes it, he doesn’t even mind the pricetag. But that is telling me they really did something right with these perfumes, as I said earlier this week to Victoria, I never met somebody who didn’t like Puredistance. To make such a high quality, well constructed fragrance that is also appealing to so many people is an amazing feat.
      Please let me know how you like it, once you smell it at Roja Dove’s, Tara!

  2. Tarleisio says:

    What a beautiful environment to immerse yourself in! It seems a shame, however, that Veronika didn’t know as much as she should, or a customer could expect in such luxurious surroundings.
    I haven’t tried anything from the Puredistance line, so I’m really not in any position to say how good or ‘worthy’ they are (although I do know you love them, so they can’t be too bad!), but there’s something in the underlying concept that…makes my teeth hurt slightly. Niche is never a stranger to exclusive, difficult-to-obtain, luxury, state-of-the-art perfume etc., but then again, I would think that those perfumes would have to be truly spectacular/mind-blowing/ground-breaking to justify their aesthetic approach – never mind their price point!
    I recall a quote from a documentary I recently saw on Coco Chanel from an interview by France 1 done in 1971, I think.
    “Perfume is not an accessory to a stylish woman, it is the only accessory that matters,” stated Mlle Chanel with finality in her rasping smoker’s voice. She went on to say: “It is the only accessory she needs. If perfume is the only luxury she can afford, then nothing else is important. People will look at her clothes, certainly, but it will be her perfume and her personality they remember.”
    Truer words were never said! And since perfume is the only luxury I can afford, if I’m not utterly blown to bits and pieces by that entire “me-but-infinitely-better-Goddess-mode” subtext, then I have to pass it by past a certain price point. There are more than enough choices to make, even in perfumes and even in niche.
    What I can appreciate is the willingness to make a perfume choice such an experience, as they do in the Malle shop in Paris, at the Salons Shiseido, at Roja Dove in London, or, if we have to get super-exclusive, the JAR experience.
    I don’t mean to sound like a grouch, but maybe it’s just a slight peeve that some things will always be out of reach, unless I write the next Da Vinci code…;-)

    • Olfactoria says:

      If you have read my review of Puredistance I, you will know that I started out at precisely the same point you are finding yourself right now. I was more than sceptic and more than a little sarcastic about the whole thing, the hype, the uber-exclusivity, the bordering on pretentious blurbs. But then I smelled the perfume, and whatever I criticised before went out the window, because whatever else they do or say, however they choose to position themselves, the perfume is good. They indeed have a product on their hands that can fulfill even the most preposterous claim and withstand the attacks those claims provoke in people like us.
      As for the price, it is not so out of the ordinary, after all it is a pure perfume. And what is really expensive and luxurious is the flacon, but that is also totally optional. No one needs to spend money on it to get to the fragrance. I like its heft, but it doesn’t pain me in the least to not be able to afford it, I have the perfume and that doesn’t cost more than any Guerlain or Chanel extrait per ml. It even looks perfectly good without the flacon too, it comes in a luxe white silk and leather box, it is a thing of beauty.
      About that bestseller of yours, when (not a question of if) it comes to pass, you’ll take us all to JAR, okay? 😉

  3. Marina says:

    Looks beautiful, especially those gates on the first photo. Shame about the hostess and the sense of doom. On the other hand, it seems amazing that the place has lasted as long as it had, being focused on 1 perfume for a long time…

    • Olfactoria says:

      Sense of Doom is exactly right, that is what was palpably in the air. The question is why would you go there more than once, if you know the perfume, there is no reason to return, even with three now, one visit is enough. They need to attract customers somehow, I am no expert, but that seems not to be the way. They would do much better integrated in a niche perfume store like Le Parfum, like Puredistance is sold in the rest of Europe.

  4. lady jane grey says:

    I stumbled in once, back in September 2008… I even wrote a comment about that somewhat “skeptical” experience on Marina’s lovely blog (when she reviewed PDI dd. Sept 29, 2008). Of course, that time they only had the perfume no. 1, but I at least was lucky enough to be welcomed by a nice & knowledgable young lady, who was eager (and capable) to answer my questions. Being straightforward (as I am) I think I’d be furious to meet a person there, who has litle idea about the very special object she’s ought to sell… I mean, it’s not exactly a Britney Spears celebrity parfum she sells there… And the price isn’t the same either…
    Anyway, I’m still interested in PDII and M, I was thinking about that recently, when visited the furniture-shop in the same building.

    • Olfactoria says:

      We were mostly bewildered and almost bemused by the SA’s behaviour, rather than furious, because it was so unexpected and slightly strange.
      You should try Antonia amd M, both really good perfumes well worth looking into.
      I love that furniture shop! 🙂

  5. Alice C says:

    Sounds like a fabulous experience (even with the poor SA). What a gorgeous entrance!

  6. Victoria says:

    Sounds wonderful, and I want to visit when I come to Vienna. However, the fact that the SA did not know that much surprises me, especially at the luxury boutique like this. It is really a shame.

    • Olfactoria says:

      I was really surprised as well, It is not in keeping with the image Puredistance wants to project (and succeeds in normally, imo). Do you have a visit to Vienna planned in the near future?

  7. A note from Puredistance: it is good to hear so much positive news on our perfumes and the showroom in Vienna itself and sad to learn Veronika did not meet the expectations you had. I have learned from this and this week we are working on improving the fragrance knowledge she and her business partner Irina have. Which is something that I should have been working on last December, when we introduced our two new perfumes, but unfortunately we had to spend all the time we had on getting the perfumes ready and out before Christmas; it was a crazy month for us! So in the end the responsibility for this lack of knowledge is mine, not Veronika’s. She simply lacked the information she needed.

    So thanks for the feedback, I definitely will do something with it and I can assure you that next time you will visit the lounge you will be treated with the same friendliness as last time, but now also with the right answers.

    Kind Regards,

    Jan Ewoud Vos
    Founder Puredistance

    • Olfactoria says:

      Mr Vos,
      Thank you very much for responding to my post! I appreciate it that you are taking the time.
      I understand that the launch of new products is very stressful and some things have to be left lagging behind a little, even if it is only for the time being. I am certain that all your staff will be on top of things again soon. I am sorry that I had to mention the less ideal side of our visit, but I felt that I should present an accurate picture, even it it meant having to put a little shadow on our otherwise wonderful experience in the Lounge.
      Incidentally I just finished writing a review of Puredistance M when I saw your comment, it will be up tomorrow. I hope you will come back to read it as well.
      Best,
      Olfactoria

  8. Pingback: A Reaction From The Founder Of Puredistance | Olfactoria's Travels

  9. Pingback: Conversion – Review: Puredistance M | Olfactoria's Travels

  10. Pingback: Puredistance Perfume: Interview with founder Jan Ewoud Vos

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