I was disappointed because one of the things I wanted to see were the flacons of Marlene's perfumes. I'm passionate about fragrances myself, so that interested me in particular-but, oh well, all the vintage bottles are lying in some Filmmuseum archive, temporarily hidden from the fan's curious eye. ;)
Even thought I didn't inspect what I wanted to, I'll try to answer the question: how did the Goddess smell?
In her 20s, she probably would wear No. 37 Veilchen (Pure Violet) perfume by Frau Tonis. The brand was just resurrected by the owner's granddaughter in 2009; they write on their website:
"Now to our final question: You also offer scents that once enthralled the legendary Marlene Dietrich?So I had to visit them.
Yes, that is correct. Dietrich’s favourite perfume was a scent as intense and eccentric as her she herself: pure violet. A scent that is dominated by the sweet, intense almost stubborn top note. This perfume may not capture the spirit of the time today, however, one can easily imagine how Berlin’s grande-dame of the roaring 20s once used this scent to cause quite the stir."
I've bought the smallest version of this scent--it really is violet in all its glory--if you've ever drunk Creme de Violette from Monin, then the smell is exactly the same. I myself can imagine Marlene wearing this perfume in the 1920s Berlin; it's a bit sweet, intoxicating and very extravagant, but not as sophisticated as Dietrich's later olfactory choices.
So how did she smell like in the 1930s?
Various sources (like this, or this, or that one) mention Creed's Angelique Encens and Guerlain's Vol de Nuit, both from 1933.
These are the only two of Diva's scent that I haven't laid my hands on (at least not yet. ;) ) Creed dips in tuberose, which Marlene used to love, in jasmine, and it's based on amber and incense--sounds very Dietrich, doesn't it? Unfortunately, the perfume is now discontinued and really hard to get.
Guerlain's Vol de Nuit is another interesting creation, my dream to get; absolute classic with its citrus head, floral-aldehyde body and warm, sandalwood and musk base. Perfect!
Tabac Blond from Caron (1919) is a fragrance that could be associated with Marlene even by its name. Leathery, full of tobacco, but softened by vanilla, it sounds possible that Dietrich would like it.
There's also a notice of Lelong's Indiscret from 1936, floral-woody perfume with galbanium- the same you can find in Vol de Nuit.
In the 1940s and 1950s, there was Piguet's Bandit from 1944-fragrance associated with Edith Piaf but, oh my, it screams Marlene. It's so feminine on one hand, but harsh and full of masculine tobacco on the other. I've found the info that Dietrich loved it repeated on various websites, especially those with Bandit's reviews.
Another Piguet's creation, Fracas from 1948, is also mentioned in one of the sources I've posted. The scent is very feminine, very sweet, it doesn't have the nerve as the above mentioned ones have. However, it's full of tuberose, so maybe that's why it appealed to Marlene?
Here you can find photo of Guerlain's Shalimar perfume that Marlene reputedly owned (it's a woody, oriental classic from 1925) and here a notice about the Young Dew scent (by Estee Lauder, 1953), another tuberose scent, this time spicy one, with cinnamon and earthy patchouli.
While smelling various scents that Dietrich was supposed to wear, remember one thing--most of them are now reformulated and don't always resemble their vintage versions. With this in mind, you can now go and check Marlene's taste in fragrances. ;-)