D.S. & Durga Takes Manhattan
An indie-cool couple, perfumer David Seth Moltz and his designing wife, Kavi Moltz, takes on Manhattan.
Stage, lights, cue the neon and download the playlist, then sniff. Situated on the corner of Mulberry and Prince Streets, in the heart of New York City’s Nolita, is the new D.S. & Durga fragrance boutique.
“We’re finally here, we have a space in the city!” D.S. Moltz declares. Along with his former architect wife, Kavi Moltz, who applied her keen design sense (Kavi designs all product packaging for their brand) to put together this environment’s very sleek and modern aesthetic, but with a twist: the antennas of a custom chandelier designed by Entler loom over their beloved collection of fragrances, each with an in-depth musical story, of course. And keeping it true to their home roots, the bespoke floating shelves in black steel were fabricated by Serett Metalworks of Brooklyn and frame a custom board-formed concrete floating desk built by Oso Industries of Brooklyn. And with eye-catching neons and programmable-color tube-lighting design, the vibe is chill and unique. “We wanted to create an atmosphere that felt like us, and a bit more of my design aesthetic that's a little dark and a little edgy, with different textures,” says Kavi while David chiming in, “it’s bad-ass fancy.” And yes, David got his say in the design, too. They re-created David’s working fragrance lab, where the shelves are filled with original scent-note bottles, remaining true-blue to his craft.
The look is complete with a pristine lineup of literary- and music-inspired fragrance collections (playlists are optional), along with storied candles with sharp visuals designed by Kavi. And let’s not forget the rear-view-mirror air fresheners for the car such as Holy Ficus and Big Sur, ’cause the scene is never complete without the scent and the music on Route 66.
To mark such ceremonious occasion, their new signature scent, called D.S., just launched, and I must admit that it might be their most sophisticated scent to date. Housing notes of frangipani, gardenia, and saffron on top, and yellow lotus rose absolute and agarwood at theheart, followed by Sri Lankan sandalwood, vetiver, and musk ambrette sitting at the base, it’s sedating yet alluring at the same time. “D.S. is the culmination of a year of work spent developing a fragrance with the Indian materials I cherish the most,” says D.S. Moltz. With an overdose of superfine oils, including Sri Lankan sandalwood, loads of vetiver, rose absolute, jasmine, mush, and saffron, “slated under D.S. & Durga’s gold label line, it’s the right place for me to highlight these rare ingredients that can only be produced in small batches.”
Furthermore, a bath-and-body line is launching next month—by customer demand! It started with Bowmakers Body Wash and Lotion at the Thompson Hotel, where they provided bathroom amenities. Guests kept asking to purchase a full-sized (even on TripAdvisor.com, for reals!). It will soon be available, and in two additional scents: Debaser and Rose Atlantic. It's hip. It's cool. I'm into it. And it's clear—they are the true masters of their domain.