Featuring competitive pricing and frequent shipments from countries including France, Egypt, China and India, Dop Antiques & Architecturals (300 Jefferson Hwy., 504-231-3397; www.dopantiques.-com) has secured a niche for itself since opening in 2000. Owner Michiel Dop keeps his 15,000-square-foot warehouse filled with an ever-changing mix of antiques and antique reproductions.
A native of the Netherlands, Dop came to New Orleans after meeting his New Orleanian wife, Adela. He immediately recognized a business opportunity. "I saw Magazine Street and Royal Street and couldn't believe the prices they were getting for antiques," he says.
The couple began importing antiques from France, Belgium, England, Italy and the Netherlands and wholesaling them to the design trade. When Hurricane Katrina's widespread losses created an increased demand for furnishings in a city with a longstanding love for antiques, Dop started retailing his inventory. He quickly garnered a whole new following.
"I have customers who come in every three weeks to see what's new," says Dop, who receives shipments at three-week intervals and sometimes as often as twice a month. "I still work with the (design) industry a lot too," he adds, noting that Dop always provides designer and dealer discounts. The local film industry — particularly period films — also has been a good market for Dop.
Dop travels to Europe several times a year to purchase antiques. The majority of his other wares are selected by an experienced antiques dealer in the Netherlands. The arrangement works well for the city's antique-savvy residents.
"New Orleans is a French city," Dop says. "Antiques go so well with the style of architecture here."
Nineteenth-century Louis XV and Louis XVI pieces are the mainstay of the warehouse's furniture stock. There are rustic farm tables, carved armoires, beds, buffets, enfilades, dressers and chairs from those periods and others. Dop also is known for its mirrors, chandeliers, garden furniture and ornaments, its line of antique reproductions upholstered in simple off-white muslin, and for decorative accent pieces like wooden dough bowls. Dop imports metal table bases from India, custom builds items including dining tables, coffee tables and bookcases, refinishes furnishings, and earlier this year, expanded to include a second-floor space for rugs imported from Iran by dealer M.J. Moezzi.
"We're a place where you can find something for any room in your house or porch or yard," Dop says.