Bottling Up New York City

After 9/11, Paris-born businesswoman Laurice Rahmé saw her adopted home scared and broken, wearing masks to block the smell of death and destruction. She wanted to reunite New York City.

How This Entrepreneur is Capturing New York City's Neighborhoods One Perfume Bottle at a Time
COURTESY OF BOND NO. 9

At the time, she was the U.S. distributor of Creed fragrances, following stints with L’Oréal and Lancôme. In 2003 she launched her own fragrance company, Bond No. 9, with a dual mission to reunite the city and restore the lost artistry of perfumery.

Related: 15 Traits of Unabashedly Successful Women

Every aspect of the company pays tribute to the city of hustle, from the name (the boutique is nestled on 9 Bond St. in NoHo) to the scents and packaging. Each Bond scent represents a specific neighborhood, from the light, fresh floral scent of High Line to the crisp and spicy scent of Wall Street. The bottles, designed by New York artist Ron Rowe, capture each neighborhood’s vibe, such as the artistry of the West Side or the lavish, grand-scale ambience of Central Park West.

How This Entrepreneur is Capturing New York City's Neighborhoods One Perfume Bottle at a TimeCOURTESY OF BOND NO. 9
 

At heart, Rahmé is an artist—she studied art history and worked in antiques. But the hardest part of her job isn’t creating unique scents; it’s finding passionate people to work in her boutiques.

 

“If you love what you do, the customers feel it.”

 

“If you love what you do, the customers feel it,” she says. “With perfume it’s even more important because it’s abstract. You spray perfume and it’s invisible. People need to be romanticized.”

Rahmé originally envisioned Bond No. 9 as exclusive to New York, but the scents have transcended the Big Apple to seduce people around the globe. Not sure which neighborhood fits you? Step into one of the city’s four Bond boutiques, select a bottle design and create your own scent.

Each new neighborhood, from concept to packaging, takes two to three years to complete. Rahmé personally selects and envisions each new fragrance and design.

Related: Calling All Women: How You Can Be a Boss Lady, Too

 

This article originally appeared in the October 2016 issue of SUCCESS magazine.

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Cecilia Meis

Cecilia Meis

Cecilia Meis is a full-time writer and editor based in Dallas, Texas. Besides SUCCESS, her work has appeared in Time Out Dallas, Rewire, Healthline and others. Outside of work, she plays beach volleyball, attempts home cooking and is ardently working toward making her cat, Nola, Insta-famous.

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