- READER REVIEWS
Mon-Sat, 10am-6pm; Sun, noon-5pm
Nearby Subway Stops
6 at 68th St.-Hunter College
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This venue is closed.
In the 1860s, William Penhaligon opened a perfumery near Buckingham Palace catering to wealthy Britons. Elite customers, such as the Duke of Marlborough, could create custom blends. Many of those same formulas are bottled and sold today at Penhaligon’s shops around the world, including the Madison Avenue store, which occupies the ground level of an old carriage house. The inside resembles a hunter's lodge, with green carpeting and warm wooden cases that dwarf the glass bottles of perfume, crystal atomizers, and floral-print talcum powders on display. A few more complex contemporary blends have been added to the line of traditional floral, spicy, and citrus scents. But most clients still come for the classics, like the Duke’s own woodsy Blenheim Bouquet ($80 for 50 ml). Unlike many department-store brands, the scents don’t have chemical fixatives, so they are shorter-lasting and less potent, gracing only the nostrils of an exclusive few.Couture Scents
For $30,000 to $50,000, customers can take trips to England to customize their own fragrance. Penhaligon’s guarantees that the blend will remain exclusive to them for three years—and they can pay extra for a lifetime signature scent.