Times Square’s transformation from red light district to squeaky clean tourist attraction just got even cleaner with the addition of an outpost of Israeli soap company Laline.
Created by two Israeli cousins in 1999 and now a partner with Israeli fashion giant Fox, Laline’s array of soaps, exfoliants, creams, and candles include essential oils and scents from Provence France and minerals from the Dead Sea. The cruelty-free products are packaged in recyclable containers and feature scents such as “Cherry Blossom,” “Lemongrass Verbena,” and “Vanilla Pink Pepper.”
Laline isn’t the only Israeli cosmetics company to take to the global market. Sabon, founded in Tel Aviv in 1997, has over 130 stores worldwide, including one in Times Square. Ahava’s Dead Sea mineral products first launched in the U.S. in 1992 and are now staples at department store counters.
With over 100 stores in Israel and 16 in Japan, Laline opened their newest 640-square-foot branch in the heart of Time Square’s “bowtie” (Broadway and 7th Avenues between 42nd and 47th Streets) on November 30th after signing a long-term lease with Vornado Realty this past June. The company is investing big money in the store — rent for such prime real estate costs around $2,300-$2,400 per square foot.
Will the investment pay off?
So far sales have been brisk, according to sales associate Imani Jack.
“It’s been good,” she told The Jewish Week. “We’re doing really well.”
As for Israeli customers, Jack says they come in “all the time.”
In addition to displays of open jars ready for the testing, the store also boasts a mezuzah, easily noticeable through the sleek glass doors. It seems that the company’s tagline of “Where body meets soul” is a fitting one.
Photo: Laline's new store in Times Square. Screenshot via LalineIsrael on Instagram.