Meredith Melling's duplex loft in NoHo features the polished decorating of Ariel Ashe - lots of neutrals with some standout pieces like a tufted royal-blue velvet sofa and a burl-wood-and-chrome dining table - set against its bleached wood floors and gutsy exposed beams and columns. Tying it all together is an invisible, but palpable, element: a sandalwood, vanilla and pepper fragrance, designed especially for Ms. Melling and her apartment, wafting from a sleek metal machine the size of a tablet hidden behind the blue sofa.
What Good Taste Smells Like
REINALDO LEANDRO, architect
"It's such a lofty space, and it meanders in the back," Ms. Melling, 40, said. "One of the reasons to do scent is to bring in a sense of intimacy and unification."A few blocks north, at the Delos on East 11th Street, a luxury "wellness" condominium conversion of a 19th-century building, the same scent technology (what's known as cold-air diffusion, pumped through the ductwork) is in place for custom fragrances to perfume the apartments of Deepak Chopra, Leonardo DiCaprio and others who have bought there. Over in the West Village, a new five-story townhouse has five fragrance systems, one for each floor, and its owners can use their smart devices to scent their spaces with its custom fragrance of lavender, geranium and ylang-ylang.
In Beverly Hills, Calif., a 48,000-square-foot marble palace built by a developer and sold to a Middle Eastern family smells like lemon, fig and cardamom. And in New Jersey, a new contemporary house belonging to a couple in the medical profession has its own custom scent, a fragrance based on citrus notes and a bit of green floral.
Say goodbye to the scented candle. Scent branding has moved into the living room.
For six years, Design Miami, the design fair that runs alongside Art Basel in Miami and Switzerland, has smelled like turquoise and purple, as its fragrance designer, Dawn Goldworm, put it.
"It's the electricity of Miami contrasted with the strangeness of the art world," she said.
DAWN GOLDWORM, S
CENT DIRECTOR SAMANTHA GOLDWORM, BUSINESS DIRECTOR
Ms. Goldworm is the scent director of 12.29, a Manhattan-based "olfactive branding" company that she runs with her twin sister, Samantha. They have scented the lobby of the futuristic Zaha Hadid condominium in Miami, One Thousand Museum, to smell like the ocean (the development has many luxuries, including a helipad, but it is not on the water). And this year, the Goldworms perfumed the Armory Show-Contemporary on Pier 94 in Manhattan with what Dawn Goldworm described as the smell of wet pavement. (Sniffing a white paper blotter that had been dipped in the show's fragrance, this reporter detected a floral aroma with an underlying zing.) http://1229scent.com/
As developers around the country began employing scent technologies to brand their new projects (ScentAir's marketing director, Ed Burke, said that between 2010 and 2012, "condos and apartments grew faster as a percentage of our sales than any other industry"), hotel guests started clamoring to take the fragrances home with them.
Excerpted from Penelope Greene, The New York Times