March 14, 2019

March 8, 2019 was International Women’s Day, but since 1987, the entire month of March has been designated National Women’s History Month in the U.S. We take this month to celebrate the achievements of American women, but especially to bring awareness to the challenges that women still face in our nation.

In the workforce, for example, the gender pay gap continues to be an issue, and while the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements have made great strides in changing the conversation about sexual harassment.  Nevertheless, much work still remains to be done, both in creating safe, co-respectful work environments and leveling the playing field with regard to entrepreneurship.

Nowhere is this felt more acutely than here in New York City, which is home to at least 359,000 women-owned businesses generating $50 billion in annual sales. Even though NYC was recently rated by Fortune as the best city in the world for women entrepreneurs, a recent report reveals that only eight percent of NYC women-owned businesses employ more people than the owner, and more than 70 percent of these women owners say they face challenges when it comes to raising capital, forming business relationships,                                                                                                                              v and even hiring staff.

For these reasons, in honor of both International Women’s Day and National Women’s History Month, we’ve compiled the following list of resources to support women-owned businesses in general, but especially those who are Kew tenants.

 

WE NYC

This sub-initiative of NYC’s Department of Small Businesses is a virtual hub of resources for women entrepreneurs. On this site, you can find informative events, connect with a mentor, discover resources for capital, and more, all for free.

 

Minority and Woman-Owned Business Enterprise (M/WBE) Program

New York City goes out of its way to contract for services from minority and women-owned businesses. This program provides information how to get certified as an M/WBE business in order to quality for city contracts.

 

New York Women’s Chamber of Commerce (NYWCC)

This membership organization is dedicated to providing platforms for success to help self-employed women and women-owned businesses. Annual dues are reasonable, and they open up a whole array of opportunities for promotion and connection for your business.

 

Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC)

This national organization is the largest certifier of women-owned businesses in the U.S., offering a wide range of resources and support for women entrepreneurs, including educational resources, networking, grant opportunities, and more.

 

Ellevate

Ellevate is a dues-based business networking community specifically geared toward women entrepreneurs. The New York City chapter keeps a full schedule of meetups, seminars, panel discussions, and small “squads” for mutual support and promotion.

 

Create & Cultivate

This organization features both an online community/podcast and offline conferences designed to support, inform, and empower women entrepreneurs. The next NYC conference, slated for May 4, 2019, will feature a large roster of speakers discussing entrepreneurship, branding, social media, and much more.

 

The Tory Burch Foundation

A non-profit organization for the empowerment of women entrepreneurs, the Tory Burch Foundation helps women business owners by helping them connect to funding as well as offering educational programs for women owners in NYC. The Foundation’s one-year fellowship provides more in-depth education and mentoring for a select group of applicants.

 

Bonus Section: Funding Resources/Investors for Women-Owned Businesses

A number of individuals and firms specifically provide venture capital for women-led businesses. Here are a few to check out:

In the past few years, women entrepreneurs have made great progress to change the gender bias in the business world, with as many as 1,821 new women-owned businesses launching every day. But while women now own as many as 40 percent of all companies in the U.S., most of these women are still “solopreneurs,” and their companies receive about 45 percent less funding than companies run by their male counterparts. Hopefully, with the help of some the resources listed above, those numbers will increase.

This month, we encourage everyone to identify women-owned businesses near you and give them your business as often as possible.

March 7, 2019

After ten years as CEO and Creative Director at Bunny Williams Home, Jennifer Potter and Audrey Margarite decided to take on a new venture in the home décor industry and founded their own company: Fête Home.

Just a few months after their October 2018 launch, we sat down with Jennifer and Audrey to learn more about Fête Home, what makes the company special, and where they hope to see it going moving forward.


You have been in the design and decor industry for a long time now—both of you were at Bunny Williams for at least ten years. What brought you to found your own company, and how has your time at Bunny Williams influenced your work at Fête Home?

Jennifer: Yes, we were there for over a decade. Audrey was Creative Director and I was CEO. We wore two different hats, but we shared a desk all that time. It was a pretty small team, so we did a multitude of things and worked together.

Bunny Williams Home was at a different price point; it was more of a luxury home brand, and we saw some whitespace in the market for really good design at reasonable prices. We have, as have most consumers, been influenced by the direct-to-consumer model.

We have developed relationships with factories and sources for the last decade. We knew that between the business and creative experience we gained, we could build something in the direct-to-consumer arena.

Audrey: We’re both mothers with young children. It is important to us to have nice things in our house, but it can’t be anything too precious. One of the things we really wanted to do was to make items that are dishwasher safe or can go in the laundry. We knew it was possible based on the factories that we worked with. So that was something that we very much wanted to bring to the forefront.

 

“Fête” means “celebration” in French—could you shed some light on why you chose that name and how it reflects your brand philosophy?

Audrey: Very basically, we feel that your home should bring you joy and there should be a reason to celebrate every day. That’s why we named our company Fête Home: so that people will realize they can invite people over anytime.  It doesn’t have to be stressful. You can make every day a little celebration.

 

What else would you say makes Fête Home special?

Jennifer: We design and produce about 70 percent of the line right now, so you can’t find most of our items anywhere else. That is very important to us. We just resigned from our past jobs in May of last year, so that’s the reason why our line is not 100-percent designed and produced by us. We were trying to catch the holiday season, so there were a few categories that we had to fill in with other vendors that we know and respect.

We sell a lot of fabric by the yard, all of our table linens and textiles for pillows and throws are exclusive patterns to us. We’ve designed and produced those patterns exclusively.

Audrey: We are starting to do more and more custom work, too. For instance, right now we have three tablecloth patterns and two more in the works.  If you don’t see a tablecloth that you like or you need one in a different size, we can custom-make one for you from one of the 30 different fabrics we produce. We can also do custom pillows, window treatments and more.  You can just reach out to us about your idea, because we love to work on custom projects.

Audrey:: Another thing that makes us special is the frequency with which we’re going to introduce new products. We found the whole industry to be pretty slow. Often, they only introduce products once a year, sometimes twice a year. We want to make Fête Home more akin to fashion, where a new collection comes out seasonally.

Jennifer: Everyone is looking for the newest thing. You might love a brand, but if you keep going back and seeing the same thing, you’re going to lose interest. We want to offer something new with each collection we put out.

 

Who are you designing for? What is your main demographic?

Jennifer: We launched in October, so we’re still learning. We’ve been in this industry for a long time and that means we have a nice built-in fan base which has been really supportive. We assumed that our primary customer was going to be a woman; that’s proven for the most part to be true. I think the age range can be anywhere from 25 and up and our price points go from $20 up to $300, so it runs the gamut.

I think it often gets intimidating, when people think about accessorizing and styling their home, especially if they don’t have an interior design background. What we’re encouraging is that it doesn’t have to be intimidating. That’s what we’re really aimed towards.

We relate to being mothers and being on the go; not having time for ironing or taking meticulous care of accessories and tabletops. I think that goes for everyone who’s really busy, loves to have people over, and doesn’t want to freak out every time they do it. We also think about making things multi-purpose—items off your bookshelf to put in the middle of the table, versus worrying about fresh-cut flowers, or candles, or that kind of thing. Our target is really the busy person who appreciates being in a happy, fun home.

We’re finding other niches that we didn’t think were going to be part of the model but certainly are easy to do.

For example, we didn’t start Fête thinking of it as a gifts company, but we’re finding more and more that it certainly fills that void.

Also, interior designers have a hard time finding the final layer of a home: accessorizing and styling. They need to find things very quickly that aren’t readily available or everywhere on the market. We can definitely help with that.

And there are the prop stylists. We had a sample sale recently, which Kew helped us promote, and we found that there seem to be a lot of prop stylists in these two buildings, and we can certainly help in that market, too.

 

What would you say is the most enjoyable or rewarding part of your work and what is most difficult so far?

Jennifer: As I said, we’ve been doing this for a really long time, in terms of designing and producing, so we know what’s involved. We were a small team before, but now we’re a much smaller team—it’s just Audrey and myself. We’re each doing a million different things at any given time. So that’s definitely challenging, but seeing a product come to life is really amazing.

Audrey: Yes, seeing it come to life and then getting feedback from a customer. When somebody sends you a picture of something in her own home and says how much they love it – it makes it all worthwhile.

 

Have you noticed any trends in the industry? What have you noticed has changed over time, especially in terms of direct-to-consumer and social media developments?

Jennifer: Social media has obviously played an increasingly important role across the board, but especially in such a visual industry. A lot of sources had not been as easily visible because of various trade levels, and now, everyone can see everything. It’s a great thing for both the consumer and designer, because there are just so many options out there. It affects us as well, because the need for photography is so great, and you have to be able to show something in a million different ways. The hunger of the consumer has become a lot more intense.

Audrey: Piggybacking on that thought, I think there is a need to show our customer authenticity. Our customer really wants to see that. You can see we’re two women; we are the company.  This is what we live and breathe, and we try to convey that to our customer through Instagram and with behind-the-scenes Instagram Stories. We want people to know who they’re buying from. It’s not the big machine; it’s a small business.

 

Where do you hope to see Fête Home going in the future?

Jennifer: Well, as Audrey said, we’re putting out several collections a year, so our primary focus is to grow the catalog and offer more and more to our audience. Again, we’re still figuring out exactly who our audience is. But, catalogue expansion is a major focus, and I think our custom business has really great potential, so we really want to grow that.

 

You mentioned you chose the St. James Building in part because of the design community. Were there other things about the building and the neighborhood that drew you to make this your new office home?

Jennifer: We definitely wanted something central in New York City. We loved the community feel, plus the size of the space was right.  Of course, timing and availability were also important.

Audrey: The location is great to get to; it’s really easy. There are tons of designers in these two buildings, and even outside them, there are so many more designers just in the next few blocks, so it’s a real hub.

 

Fête Home works with designers and offers a trade discount and trade program, but they are also open to the whole community. It’s important to Jennifer and Audrey that you know that they’ll be in the office to help and they will be maintaining inventory in their office, so you can just stop by and pick something up.  Fête Home serves regular customers, as well as designers, prop stylists, event planners, and will lend items out for photoshoots. Jennifer and Audrey welcome you to come by!

February 26, 2019

Her list of accolades and accomplishments would be enviable for any vocalist. They include 19 Grammy Awards (including a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1989), Recipient of the Presidential Medal of Honor (1964) and the Kennedy Center Honors (1980), as well as being termed the first African-American prima donna of the Metropolitan Opera. Some opera aficionados argue that her portrayal of Aida remains unmatched to this day. (You can hear her performance of Aida’s central aria “O patria mia” here.)

Despite emerging at a time when societal mindsets were certainly not in her favor, soprano Leontyne Price rose to become the first African-American opera singer to achieve international stardom and legendary status. For forty years—from 1972 to 2012—Price kept her offices in the St. James Building, Suite 920. In celebration of Black History Month—not to mention Price celebrated her 92nd birthday on February 10th—we wanted to take a look back at some highlights of the stellar career of this operatic icon and former Kew tenant.

 

Beginnings, Hard Work, and Early Success

Born in Laurel, Mississippi in 1927, the daughter of a midwife and a lumberman, Mary Violet Leontyne Price showed musical talent at an early age, taking piano lessons as early as age three and growing up singing in the church choir. While attending a performance of operatic vocalist Marian Anderson at age nine, Price was indelibly inspired and claims this was when she knew she wanted to be an opera singer. Continuing to display musical talent throughout high school and college, she graduated Central State College in Wilberforce, Ohio, then enrolled in Juilliard in NYC, where she studied through the early 1950s. While still a student, Price’s vocal abilities garnered her roles in opera performances and on Broadway, as well as with an international touring company playing the role of Bess in Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess.  (You can hear her sing “Summertime” here.)

 

Rise to the Longest Met Applause, Ever

Price’s official New York recital debut came in 1954 when she performed the Hermit Songs cycle by Samuel Barber at New York’s Town Hall—with the composer himself accompanying on piano. Shortly after, she became a national figure when she appeared with the NBC Opera Theater in 1955 performing Puccini’s Tosca—the first African-American opera singer to play a leading operatic role in a televised opera. After landing additional roles both at home and abroad, Price made her first operatic recording, singing the role of Leonora in Il Trovatore with tenor Franco Corelli. It was in this role that she debut at the Metropolitan Opera in 1961. Conflicting reports put the final ovation between 35 and 42 minutes; either way, it was the longest in Met history.

In the years to follow, Price would be a performer in residence at the Met, performing regularly in leading roles as well as in opera houses across the U.S. and Europe. And in 1966, she was selected as the diva to open the new Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center. From the late 1960s until her retirement in the mid-1990s, Price began singing fewer operas in favor of concert performances in recitals, while continuing to record. Her last known live appearance was at age 74 in 2001, performing a memorial concert at Carnegie Hall in honor of the victims of the September 11th attacks.

 

Ms. Price as Cleopatra

 

Resilience and Triumph

While Price’s talent and rise to international stardom was remarkable by any standard, it wasn’t without its controversies, especially in the early days. African-American classical vocalists were practically unheard of in the opera community when she first emerged as a talent. Despite the success of her televised appearance in Tosca with the NBC Opera Theater, a number of NBC affiliates refused to air the performance in protest that she was appearing alongside a white tenor as her lover.

Nevertheless, Price’s unmistakable talents shined through and rose above the resistance. At the height of her international fame, she was hailed throughout Italy as the quintessential Verdi soprano, and after she performed Aida at the renowned La Scala in Milan, the theater readily accepted her contractual requirement that no future roles would be denied to her on the basis of race.

Ms. Price as Tosca

 

Through it all, Price categorically refused to portray herself as a victim of prejudice, even eschewing the term “African-American” and referring to herself simply as American. “If you are going to think black, think positive about it,” she said. “Don’t think down on it, or think it is something in your way.” There are many clips of Ms. Price on You Tube, and if you view them, you will see that she has always been strong, gracious, generous, and intelligent. For example, listen to her in this interview.

 

Happy 92nd Birthday, Ms. Price.  Kew Management is honored to have had such a great artist and admirable person as a tenant for 40 years.

For more on Ms. Price, please follow this link.

Come for bubbly, bites and bargains. Up to 80% off on samples, overstock, display and damaged items.

Jet Set Candy Sample Sale
Thursday, February 28th from 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Suite 218 in the St. James Building

Jet Set Candy offers travel-inspired jewelry that captures the essence of your favorite destinations. Featuring luggage tag charms that bear international airport codes, unique moveable charms, cuffs, chains, bracelets and more, Jet Set Candy lets you Collect Your Adventures™ in style.

Website: www.jetsetcandy.com
Instagram: @jetsetcandy

Call (551) 579-2375 with questions.

February 20, 2019

With recent updates made to the Kew Management website, we’ve added a new feature especially for our tenants: a brand-new online Tenant Center.  With this feature, we’ve gathered all the tools and useful information you need as a tenant into one convenient portal.

Bookmark this page:  https://kewmanagement.com/tenant-center

 

Overview of Features

Feel free to explore the new portal for yourself, but here’s a quick summary of what you can access from the Tenant Center:

  • ClickPay: Check your account status and pay Kew invoices online.
  • Workspeed: Enter maintenance requests that go right to the building staff and are tracked by Property Management.
  • Key Information: Here you’ll find a list of important emergency and Kew phone numbers, as well as downloadable forms and informative documents you may need as a tenant, including an online Tenant Guide with answers to most of your questions.
  • Tenant Network: A searchable directory of Kew tenants to help you discover new suppliers, clients, or collaborators within the Kew network.
  • Tenant Headlines: Stay up-to-date with news and information about fellow accomplished tenants, our buildings, and the NoMad neighborhood.

We hope the new Tenant Center will not only make it easier for you to conduct Kew business as a tenant, but also help you to connect with the Kew community and find inspiration and synergy with your fellow tenants in the process.

Click here to check it out.

Questions about the Tenant Network or Tenant Headlines? Reach out to rfalk@kewmanagement.com.

January 29, 2019

One great thing about NYC is that you are never short on places to meet up with people for a drink. But, lots of people have the same idea, and between televised sports and active Happy Hours, it doesn’t take long for some bars to get so loud that conversation becomes impractical if not impossible. If you live or work in NoMad and are looking to have a genuine chat with someone over an after-work beer, cocktail or glass of wine, here are a few neighborhood spots to try where the decibel level might be just a bit more manageable.

The Seville at the James Hotel

Located in the basement of the recently-renovated James Hotel-NoMad, The Seville takes its name from the hotel’s original name “Seville”. Upon entering, you will notice a large living room-like setting with lots of space for conversation with friends, co-workers, clients, or colleagues. Arrive early and the atmosphere will be more relaxed and low-key. Their signature cocktails are sure to please.

The Seville at the James Hotel
22 East 29th Street
New York, NY 10016
(212) 226-2833

www.jameshotels.com

Hours:
Sunday – Thursday: 4:00 p.m. – 2:00 a.m.
Friday & Saturday: 4:00 p.m. – 4:00 a.m.


The Flatiron Room

Topping many lists as one of the best whiskey bars in NYC and the world, this sophisticated destination features over 1,000 varieties of whiskey, along with other traditional liquors and wines. You won’t find a whisper-quiet atmosphere here, but neither will you be fighting pulsing club speakers. Instead, you’ll have the chance to enjoy a fine glass of whiskey or wine while listening to live jazz nightly—at volumes that don’t overpower conversation.

The Flatiron Room
37 West 26th Street
New York, NY 10010
(212) 725-3860

www.theflatironroom.com

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 4 p.m. – 2 a.m.
Saturday: 5 p.m. – 2 a.m.
Sunday: 5 p.m. – 12 a.m.


Lobby Bar at the Ace Hotel

One doesn’t normally think of a hotel lobby as a quiet place to have drinks—but then again, the Ace Hotel isn’t your typical hotel. The Lobby Bar is known for its intimate feel and calm surroundings, and if you get the munchies, they also offer a selection of items from the hotel’s flagship restaurant, The Breslin. The only caveat: The bar hosts local DJs some evenings, so if your conversation lingers toward 10 p.m., don’t be surprised if the atmosphere changes.

Lobby Bar at Ace Hotel New York
20 West 29th Street
New York, NY 10001

www.acehotel.com

Hours:
Sunday – Wednesday: 12 p.m. – 2 a.m.
Thursday – Saturday: 12 p.m. – 3 a.m.


Mondrian Terrace

For late afternoon drinks with a bit of fresh air, check out this NoMad gem. Set on the rooftop of the Mondrian Hotel, Mondrian Terrace offers both indoor and outdoor seating with a comfortable vibe and an airy atmosphere. It’s typically not crowded after work, and you can usually find a quiet spot or corner on the terrace to converse.

Mondrian Terrace at the Mondrian Park Avenue Hotel
444 Park Ave South
New York, NY 10016
(212) 804-8880

www.ingoodcompany.com

Hours:
Tuesday – Saturday: 4 p.m. – 11 p.m.


NoMad Bar

Yes, the NoMad Restaurant (in the NoMad Hotel) is one of the neighborhood’s most elegant dining options—but the NoMad Bar’s classy décor and quiet atmosphere also provide excellent surroundings for conversation. Accessible by a separate entrance at 10 West 28th Street, this bar offers a selection of classic and signature cocktails (along with a nice array of beers and wines)—not to mention an upscale pub menu, if you’re inclined to dine.

NoMad Bar
10 West 28th Street
New York, NY 10001
(212) 796-1500

Hours:
Sunday: 5 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Monday and Tuesday: 5 p.m. – 12 a.m.
Wednesday – Saturday: 5 p.m. – 2 a.m.


Tarallucci e Vino

Technically, this is more an Italian restaurant than a bar, and a really good one at that. But they’ve got an impressive list of wines and cocktails and a variety of seating options—including outdoor seating in the warmer months—and they welcome the after-work crowd. If you do get hungry, which you probably will…that’s just another bonus.

Tarallucci e Vino NoMad
44 East 28th Street
New York, NY 10016
(212) 779-1100

www.taralluccievino.net

Hours:
Monday – Wednesday: 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Thursday – Saturday: 11 a.m. – 12 a.m.


Wine:30

Tucked into a cozy nook in northeast NoMad, this intimate wine bar and restaurant features an extensive list of 300 wines (30 by the glass), plus a seasonal menu drawing from local sources. With a full-service bar up front, quiet dining in back, and an all-season garden patio, Wine:30 is typically not too crowded and a great place for quiet conversation. You can even stay for dinner, if you wish.

Wine:30
41 East 30th Street
New York, NY 10016
(212) 481-0197

www.wine30nyc.com

Hours:
Tuesday – Saturday: 11 a.m. – 2 a.m.
Sunday – Monday: 11 a.m. – 1 a.m.

December 4, 2018

Gotham Glow has built a stellar reputation as one of the most trusted names in the airbrush tanning business, landing on numerous lists of the best salons in New York City, including lists prepared by Goop, Allure, and Haute Living. The salon is renowned for its superior and tasteful airbrush work; making sure every client ends up with a glow that looks natural. That may be why the client list is vast and varied, including brides, models, public figures, celebrities, and firms such as Victoria’s Secret, Sports Illustrated, and Ford Models.

Superior Service and Identifying a Niche Leads to Success

Tamar began her career 17 years ago at one of the first airbrush tanning salons in New York City honing her skills over time. After a couple of years, she noticed an untapped niche market – the need for mobile tanning services and after-hours availability, perfect for busy New Yorkers. Tamar developed her own proprietary tanning formula and using her own unique tanning techniques she stepped out on her own, and 14 years ago Gotham Glow was born.

Tamar’s splendid work, round-the-clock availability, and deep dedication to her clients’ needs soon won her a cult following and a wealth of referrals. You’d catch her at all hours heading out to or returning from a client call with her equipment. This skill and dedication led to press coverage.

Tamar recalls, “One day, The New York Times contacted me out of the blue for an article about mobile beauty services. I thought it was just going to be a little snippet.” To her surprise, the Times featured her photo on the front page of the Style section.

Expanding to Meet the Demand for a Great Tan

As Gotham Glow continued to flourish, Tamar decided to open her own salon here in the Townsend Building at 1123 Broadway, adding in-salon services to her ever-popular house call service. She and her staff have been here for the last nine years and have upsized within the Townsend as the business continued to expand. “I absolutely love the architectural beauty and history of the Townsend building and the dedication of the staff makes this the perfect home for Gotham Glow. We have expanded and grown just as the NOMAD neighborhood has developed so much over the past decade.”

Today, Gotham Glow’s team offers in-salon and mobile tans for all skin tones and ages. They provide multi-tan packages as well as services for tanning parties, bridal parties, corporate events, film/video shoots, editorials, and more. And, Gotham Glow welcomes guys, too. As men have become more comfortable with facials, manicures, and eyebrow shaping, they can be seen headed toward Gotham Glow before a special date or summer weekend.

In order to keep up with growing demand, over the years Tamar has developed a wonderful team of skilled technicians whom have been trained intensively to ensure that the salon’s brand of expertise and attention to detail is always maintained. “Technicians are trained for months before they’re allowed to tan clients,” she explained.

But Gotham Glow isn’t so busy that it doesn’t stop to care for others, in the tradition of many of Kew’s tenants. The firm has an admirable mission: to share the Glow by promoting health and wellness across the globe through our continued affiliation with the Association to Benefit Children, International Rescue Committee, Sanctuary for Families, J.T. Martell Foundation, and other charitable and social organizations.

We would say to keep an eye out for Gotham Glow’s work while you’re watching celebs walk the red carpet at the Oscars during the West Coast’s award season, but the whole point is: you’ll never know. You’ll just see a lovely glow.

Special Introductory Offer for Kew Tenants

We urge all tenants, gals and guys, who are interested to look into Gotham Glow. Gotham Glow is offering Kew tenants an introductory offer of $10 off your full body tan. Appointments can be booked through GothamGlow.com. Make sure to mention you are a Kew tenant.

Gotham Glow
1123 Broadway (at 25th Street), Suite 417
New York, NY 10010
(917) 512-9854

gothamglow.com

Hours:
Monday, Tuesday, Friday: 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Wednesday and Thursday: 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m

November 29, 2018

One of the exceptional things about our neighborhood is the number of specialty stores and one-of-a-kind shops located here—places where you can find special gifts you won’t easily find anywhere else. If you’re shopping for an especially meaningful gift this holiday season, NoMad is the place to do it. There are dozens of such shops in NoMad, such as Todd Snyder, Cocktail Kingdom, Opening Ceremony, Dover Street Market, Antique Showplace, Sebastian Grey and Marimekko, but here we are highlighting five treasure troves where you might start your hunt for that special something for that special someone.

Jung Lee

To label this a home and hospitality boutique is to vastly understate the case. This is a one-of-a-kind home and lifestyle design destination, birthed from the creativity of one of the country’s premier event designers, Jung Lee. Here you’ll find elegant serveware, dinnerware, hospitality items, home décor, and more, curated and displayed in an inviting showroom that feels more like a home than shop.  Jung Lee’s eye is masterful and in one glorious store you’ll find a special collection of items you’d have to scour the city for.

Jung Lee
25 West 29th Street
New York, NY 10001
(212) 257-5655

www.jungleeny.com

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Saturday: 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Sunday: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

 

The Old Print Shop

If you are shopping for someone who is interested in Americana artwork, vintage graphics, historic engravings, or antiquarian maps, check out The Old Print Shop on Lexington Avenue. This remarkable gallery hosts a wealth of art pieces and prints from the eighteenth through the twenty-first centuries that would enhance the collection of even the most prolific collectors or provide a one-of-a-kind piece to adorn a special friend’s home and remind them of you.

The Old Print Shop
150 Lexington Avenue
New York, NY 10016
(212) 683-3950

www.oldprintshop.com

Hours:
Tuesday – Friday: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Saturday: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. 

 

Manhattan Saddlery

A tack shop in New York City? Absolutely. In fact, Manhattan Saddlery is the only tack shop in NYC, and it’s right here in NoMad. Shop for the finest riding clothes, footwear, helmets, grooming supplies, crops, whips, girths, bridles, and of course, saddles—basically all things equestrian. (Except the horse.). It’s not for just for riders either, there are exquisitely made shoes, jackets and accessories anyone would be glad to own.

Manhattan Saddlery
117 East 24th Street
New York, NY 10010
(212) 673-1400

www.manhattansaddlery.com

Hours:
Daily: 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.

 

Eataly

Themed around old-country Italy, this combination grocery store, cooking supply shop, and international food court is a destination any time of year. In the spirit of the season, Eataly has even set up a special Holiday Market at its nearby cooking school, offering themed gift boxes and daily complimentary tastings. Or, perhaps you can pick up an unusual combination of preserves and jams (including pink grapefruit and sweet pepper), an extra fine olive oil or a unique vinegar that you know that someone on your list wouldn’t buy for themselves. If your loved ones love Italian food or cooking, you might be able to check off your entire list just by going here first.

Eataly
200 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10010
(212) 229-2560

www.eataly.com

Hours:
Daily:  7 a.m. – 11 p.m. 

 

Rizzoli Bookstore

Located in the heart of NoMad at 1133 Broadway, Rizzoli has been a New York City fixture for over 50 years. Besides being widely recognized as one of the preeminent independent booksellers in America, this store is known for its unique inventory of illustrated books on fashion, architecture, interior design, photography, and other arts, as well as remarkable fine literature and foreign language selections. If you’re shopping for a book lover (or if you are one yourself — you deserve a gift too), be sure to stop here.  An added bonus is that Rizzoli’s stunning and peaceful store will provide you a welcome respite amid the holiday bustle.

Rizzoli Bookstore
1133 Broadway
New York, NY 10010
(212) 759-2424

www.rizzolibookstore.com

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 10:30 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Saturday: 12 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Sunday: 12 p.m. – 7 p.m. 

November 28, 2018

During past holiday seasons, have you spent time foraging around for boxes, bubble wrap, the right size box, tape, and labels? Then, did you ask yourself: “Should I go to the post office, Fedex or UPS? How can I not spend a fortune? Will they get my packages there in time?” And finally, you probably lugged boxes in one or more trips to finally send them off.

Not this year. We have a solution for you. There is a way to make your holidays much less harried, particularly if you have lots of relatives and friends you have to ship presents to. Right here in 1133 Broadway, Suite 221, the Business Center can make shipping gifts a breeze.

Aurelio and Andris will:

  • Take care of you right here — no reason to trudge around with packages in cold weather.
  • Help you fit your shipment into the correct size box and wrap it securely for you.
  • Messenger one package or a large quantity of client gifts anywhere in town, same day.
  • Have all the shipping forms, envelopes, and boxes you will need, for packages going long distances.
  • Provide you with varying costs of alternate ways of sending a package via USPS and Federal Express so you can decide how much you’d like to pay and when you want your gift to arrive.
  • Make sure your gifts go off with the Post Office or FedEx the same day.

While the Center does not ship UPS, there is a UPS drop off box near the front door of the Business Center, where you can drop envelopes and parcels that already have prepaid labels.

Those of you who use the Center regularly know that Aurelio and Andris are very helpful and they want to ease you through the holiday crunch. While they suggest that the sooner you are ready to ship and can bring your packages to them the better, they do advise that all shipping at standard rates should be completed at least a week before you want your gifts to arrive.

Business Center
1133 Broadway, Suite 221
New York, NY 10010
(212) 243-3600

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

November 20, 2018

2018 has been quite stellar for Kew tenant Glenn Gissler. Besides having one of his projects featured in Dering Hall back in September, the noted interior designer recently collected a 2018 Innovation in Design Award (IDA). He has also been interviewed in two notable industry publications and was recently named one of the Top 100 Luxury Home Architecture Firms in North America.

Each year, New York Cottages & Gardens presents the prestigious IDA Award celebrating top examples of design in New York. Submissions are evaluated, and awards are granted by an exclusive panel of industry experts and influencers. This year, Glenn Gissler Design received the IDA for Garden Design in collaboration with landscape designer Billie Cohen.

In addition to receiving the IDA, Glenn’s work and expertise have been recognized by several other industry outlets over the past several months:

  • He was recently interviewed by Nick May for The Chaise Lounge, a weekly podcast discussing relevant trends and topics in interior design. Largely a success-story episode, Nick May talks with Gissler about how he got his start in the field of design and how he arrived where he is today.
  • He was also profiled recently by The Native Society, a website and collective that shares insight and inspiration from thought leaders and business professionals.
  • And finally, Glenn Gissler Design was recognized by Bond, a firm dedicated to creating effective one-to-one meetings forums which educate, stimulate and assist Principal Architects and Interior Designers from the largest firms to better serve their clients, as one of the Bond Custom Top 100 Luxury Home Architecture Firms in North America.

Kew Management congratulates Glenn Gissler, for both his remarkable designs and the broad industry recognition he received this year.  We hope that fellow tenants will get to know Glenn’s accomplishments and talents; he could prove to be a wonderful resource and collaborator.

November 14, 2018

You know how it is. You start the morning with deadlines staring you in the face, and you can’t spare an hour to go out and find lunch. Or you get into a real groove of productivity mid-morning and you don’t want to break the flow. Whatever the reason you feel you can’t leave the office for lunch, you still need your strength to avoid the afternoon slump.

Fortunately, this is New York City, and you’re in NoMad with great restaurants on every block. Many offer delivery through apps like Seamless and Caviar. If you simply can’t get away from the office today, here are five standouts that will bring lunch to you.  Try them and the many more like Fresh & Co., &Pizza, Dr. Smood, Num Pang, The Little Beet.

Dig Inn

1178 Broadway
New York, NY 10001
(212) 335-2010

Delivery platforms: Seamless, Caviar, Grubhub
https://www.diginn.com

Monday – Sunday: 11:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.

Dig Inn says it is “changing the food game” and that’s no idle boast. With a deep respect for ingredients, Dig Inn works with 102 farmers and partners to bring recipes to life, planning crops specifically for its menus. Buying from minority-run and small-scale farms, Dig Inn uses its purchasing power to support sustainable growing practices and invest in the future of farming. The result is an incredibly adventurous and delicious menu, so step out of the ordinary without stepping out of your office.

Inday

1133 Broadway
New York, NY 10010
(212) 647-8889

Delivery platforms: Seamless, Caviar, Grubhub
https://www.indaynyc.com

Monday – Sunday:  1:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

With a wide variety of healthy grain and veggie bowls (also available with your choice of protein)—and with most bowls priced around $10, Inday feels tailor-made for a nutritious lunch. And for Kew tenants, since Inday is right downstairs, you can feel confident your lunch will arrive fast and fresh.

Luke’s Lobster

5 West 15th Street
New York, NY 10010
(646) 657-0747

Delivery platforms: Seamless, Grubhub
https://www.lukeslobster.com

Sunday – Thursday: 11:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Friday – Saturday: 1:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.

Luke’s Lobster makes some of the best lobster and crab rolls in New York City, and you can get them in a hurry. There is a $20 minimum to have lunch delivered, but it’s worth splurging once in a while. In the ground floor of 1123 Broadway (just around the corner on 25th), Luke’s can deliver in a jiffy.

The Smith

1150 Broadway
New York, NY 10010
(212) 685-4500

Delivery platforms: Seamless, Grubhub
https://www.thesmithrestaurant.com

Monday – Friday: 11:30 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.
Saturday – Sunday: 5:30 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.

The Smith offers an upscale version of café/bistro dining. The restaurant has a fun atmosphere, but if you can’t get there, you can have their terrific burgers, salads, chicken potpie, salmon and even steaks delivered to your desk. There’s a $15 minimum to order, but delivery is free.

Wagamama

210 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10010
(212) 920-6233

Delivery platforms: Seamless, Grubhub
https://www.wagamama.us

Sunday – Thursday: 11:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.
Friday – Saturday 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 a.m.

Hot, fresh and popular, Wagamama reminds us there’s more to Japanese cuisine besides sushi. Delicious teppanyaki, donburi and curry dishes are available, along with generous portions of ramen and a vegan menu. And on Seamless, there’s no order minimum, so treat yourself to something that will spice up your day.

October 30, 2018

If you’re like most of us who work in the NoMad neighborhood, you spend the morning working up an appetite. NoMad is known for some of the finest dining establishments in the city, but you don’t want to spend that much money (or time) every day, especially at lunch. Where can you find a great lunch on a budget? Here are five suggestions to get you started. 

Inday 

Fast, healthy and affordable, Inday’s location in 1133 Broadway (around the corner on 26th Street) offers Indian-inspired bowls that will energize you for the rest of the work day. Make-your-own bowls start at $8.25 and include three grains/veggies, two garnishes, one sauce and one “crunch,” with the option of adding a protein for a modest upcharge.

Inday NoMad
1133 Broadway
New York, NY 10010
917-521-5012

www.indaynyc.com

Choza Taqueria

If you’re craving south-of-the-border flavors, Choza Taqueria’s tasty versions on Mexican street food will fill your stomach without emptying your pocketbook. Choose from chicken, carnitas, barbacoa, chorizo or “garbanzo y hongos” (chickpeas and mushrooms) prepared as a bowl, salad, taco, burrito or torta, with nothing over $12.

Choza Taqueria
66 Madison Avenue
New York NY 10016
212-213-0708

https://choza-taqueria.com

Num Pang Kitchen NoMad

Num Pang is Cambodian for “sandwich,” so you can guess what’s popular with this New York chain. Combining healthy ingredients with the bold flavors of Southeast Asia, this counter-service restaurant gives plenty of guilt-free dining options that are easy on the wallet, from the specialty Five-Spice Pork Belly Sandwich to the Coconut Tiger Shrimp Rice Bowl. Most sandwiches are priced in the $10 – $12 range, with nothing on the menu that is over $16.

Num Pang Kitchen NoMad
1129 Broadway, New York, NY 10010
212-647-8889

www.numpangkitchen.com

Hill Country Chicken

For old-fashioned southern comfort (i.e., fried chicken), this neighborhood favorite  hits the spot. You can order chicken by the piece — your choice of original or “Mama Els” recipe,

A selection of chicken meals, as well as salads and sandwiches — or splurge with the traditional chicken & waffle. Whatever your preference, you’ll walk out with a decent meal for under $15.

Hill Country Chicken NoMad
1123 Broadway
New York, NY 10010
212-257-6446 

www.hillcountrychicken.com

Shake Shack

No list of great NoMad lunches would be complete without mentioning the first and original Shake Shack in Madison Square Park. Now a New York tradition, this place serves delicious burgers, crinkle-cut fries, delicious shakes, frozen custard and the occasional specialty sandwich—all available at budget-saving prices. The only caveat: be prepared to stand in line.

Shake Shack
Southeast corner of Madison Square Park (Madison Ave. and 23rd Street)
New York, NY
212-889-6600

www.shakeshack.com

October 24, 2018

Over the past several years, prinkshop has made a name for itself as a purveyor of cause-centric clothing and accessories, partnering with not-for-profit groups and major corporate brands to create memorable products intended to spark meaningful dialogue.

Through “creative wordplay, eye-catching designs, and question-prompting graphics,” prinkshop’s pieces convey messages about a range of social and political issues, such as gender equality, disability advocacy, and gun control – their tagline aptly reads: “we’ve got issues.” In partnering with not-for-profit organizations they believe in, prinkshop creates products to generate awareness while donating a portion of their proceeds back to these organizations.

Pamela Bell, prinkshop’s founder, cut her teeth in the fashion and design world as a founding partner of global brands Kate Spade and Jack Spade. After her time there, Pamela brought her experience in the fashion business to the not-for-profit sector and, soon enough, prinkshop was born. Today, from prinkshop’s current offices in the Townsend Building at 1123 Broadway, she continues her mission to help “turn bystanders into activists” by creating fun products that promote the issues they care about. We recently had a conversation with Pamela, along with Karen Fechter, prinkshop’s Head of Business Development, about prinkshop’s beginnings, current projects, and future direction.

*****

Could you tell us about the history of prinkshop – when, how, and most importantly, why it was founded?

Pamela: When I sold my previous business, I had a long term non-compete, so I started working with not-for-profits. I saw an opportunity for them to offer products to their customer base and their supporters, so I tried to get some of the not-for-profits to make their own products. They could make a margin on it and create awareness at the same time. In the not-for-profits—there was no manufacturing experience, having inventory was difficult, they didn’t know how to sell—they didn’t have the business mind for it, because it’s sort of a for-profit mentality. So, I decided to do it for them myself. And that’s how I started.

 

What would you say is prinkshop’s brand philosophy?

Pamela: To boil it down to a couple of words: it’s doing good. Being responsible with the way that you’re working. I’ve worked in companies where there was so much waste, and everyone was just completely focused on the bottom line, and I think that our brand philosophy is focusing on everything before the bottom line. Focusing on everything every day.

Karen: Building communities of activists. We say that we’re turning bystanders into activists, and we’re giving them this tool that makes it so easy for them to become activists. That’s a big part of it: how you create a community of likeminded people who want to stand up for something they believe in.

Pamela: Most of our manufacturing is in Long Island in a factory that was created to employ adults with autism, so it’s really the full cycle. That was the other thing. I wanted to manufacture in a way that was responsible; that would employ people that were otherwise unemployable. This factory is a not-for-profit factory.

How long has prinkshop been in business?

Pamela: I’d been tinkering around with it for about seven years, but for the last three years it’s been a vibrant business.

 

What was your first partnership?

Pamela: The first partnership was with Donors Choose, which is a nationwide organization—it’s one of the first public school platforms where individuals can go online and donate directly to a classroom teacher. So, we did totes and t-shirts with them in a collaboration, and that was around five years ago, like a one-off. We did a campaign and sold out of the units, and then, we stopped. So, it was like a test, and that went really well. Then, I did one for The Edible Schoolyard, an organization that goes into schools and builds gardens. The kids take care of the gardens and eat from the gardens. That was with Edible Schoolyard and Madewell, and it was our first big collaboration.

 

How would you describe your approach to creating designs for these organizations?

Pamela: We create a design for a not-for-profit based on its mission. We try to come up with something that’s provocative and fun, something that speaks to what they’re doing but doesn’t spell it out. We don’t do things like “save the whales”—not that straightforward. “1973” is probably our largest campaign to date. That was the year that Roe v. Wade went into effect. Those products have been consistently steady. With the U.N. Girl Up Foundation, we did, “You see a girl, I see the future,” with Cara Delevingne. Those are our biggest sellers, those two and “BANG” – for gun control.

 

How would you say prinkshop has grown or changed over time?

Karen: I think the recognition of work that we do – we just have some really interesting people coming to knock on our door. Luckily, we’re in a position where we’re not hustling and trying to get business; we have people coming to us. I think we’ve seen the growth of some of the campaigns that have been around for a long time. When Pamela started, she was giving money and services to some of these organizations without even having a legitimate partnership with them. She was designing items and putting them out there, and just sending them checks. And now that they’ve seen what we can do, they’re actually legitimizing those relationships – now it’s becoming more of a triangle, they’re promoting it as well and actively putting the campaigns in front of their audience, which I think makes a big difference.

Pamela: I think a lot of the not-for-profits are seeing it as a legitimate model for awareness and revenue for them, so they’re joining in with us, which is great.

Could you tell us more about your philanthropic partnerships?

Pamela: NIRH (the National Institute for Reproductive Health) is the “1973” partnership. Their core work is fighting legislation to keep women’s reproductive care and rights intact, and they work at the state and local government level. We donate back to them, I think, around $5 a shirt. It depends, if it’s more expensive, we donate more. They also buy from us, for example: their goodie bags for their gala are from us. They keep promoting “1973,” too.

If an organization comes to us and we like what it’s doing, we’ll join with it, but if we don’t feel that the organization’s work is something that we want to support, we’ll politely say no. A lot of our organizations are pretty nimble, and they’re on the ground, really rolling up their sleeves and showing up to do things. We haven’t done large NGOs (non-governmental organizations) with a lot of overhead. We like that the money that we give goes straight to helping the victims or preventing bad things from happening.

 

Do they present certain ideas to you, or is the creative aspect all in your hands?

Pamela: I would say the creative aspect is all in our hands. We present to them.

Karen: We do an initial interview where we’ll just gather thoughts—they just talk and we take notes, we digest that, and Pamela and the design team turn that into slogans that speak to the work that they do without, as Pamela said, being super obvious. We want it to evoke a dialogue, it shouldn’t be completely obvious, it should be more provocative.

Pamela: That’s the concept: you walk down the street and someone says, “Oh, what is 1973?” and then you can have a conversation about it.

 

What about collaborations with other brands?

Pamela: We’ve worked with J.Crew, Madewell, Diane von Furstenberg, Kule, West Elm, Theory… Those are more real collaborations because the brands also have their own identity. So, they’re not less prinkshop, but there’s a little more design input from the fashion collaborations.

 

Which of your designs do you find yourself wearing most?

Pamela: 1973. Plus, people think I was born that year, so I really like it (she chuckles)

Any projects in the works that you can tell us about?

Pamela: Right now, we’re doing a big ongoing collaboration with J.Crew which is a licensing deal. We design for them, they give us a royalty, and they give an even larger royalty to the charity of choice, which we love. They do the manufacturing, we do all the creative, and then they donate.  We’re also working on something with the Child Mind Institute, which is a mental health organization. Their mission is to illustrate the intensity of mental illness in kids. One in five children have some kind of mental illness, and we’re going to try to help them illustrate the physicality of it, because a lot of people think mental illness is something you can just get over. So, our campaign is meant to encourage people to support children with mental health issues.

 

Where was your last office, and how does it compare to your new office at 1123 Broadway?

Pamela: My last office was in the ground floor of my 1858 townhouse in the East Village which I sold. So I had an office inside of our house, and though it was helpful to be home sometimes, it’s nice to actually come somewhere to work. I love it; love coming to the office. We’re more focused here. I love having the doorman, and it’s just great. I’ve been telling everyone, this is the best building! And I love meeting our neighbors.

 

What is the meaning behind the name prinkshop?

The word “prink” was short for “printed ink.” Then we looked it up in the dictionary, and it actually means “to gussie up,” which I thought was so interesting.

We were going to call it just “prink,” but prink.com was taken—people just go in and buy up all these URLs without even owning the company—and they wanted an exorbitant amount of money for the domain. So, a friend of mine who’s in graphic design said, “Why don’t you just add ‘shop’ to the end so you don’t have to buy the URL?” So I said, “Okay, we’ll go with prinkshop – that’s it!”

 

Where do you hope to see prinkshop moving in the future?

Pamela: I think just generating more awareness, working with more partners, going a little bit deeper with some of the relationships that we already have. We enjoy the fact that we manufacture in the factory because it’s creating jobs, so the more shirts we get out there, the more jobs we create. We also really like the design piece of it. I think that doing more licensing agreements and collaborations is really our goal. We like the idea of a collaboration a lot. It also gives us the opportunity to educate other brands on how we manufacture, and sometimes they take them into their best practices, which is very rewarding.

October 15, 2018

When Chrissy Crawford Corredor founded ArtStar in 2010, her mission was to make high-quality art accessible for young, new collectors, especially at a time when funds were tight for many in the wake of the recession. She saw there was “a gap in the market between poster-based wall décor and blue-chip fine art,” and in response, started ArtStar as a pioneering source for contemporary art in that niche.

In the years since, ArtStar has built a strong reputation, as well as an impressive corporate and hospitality client roster that includes WeWork, Soho House, Bonobos, Four Seasons, and Cole Hahn, among others. The company has also been featured in publications such as Elle Décor, The New York Times, Glamour, The Economist, Apartment Therapy, The Wall Street Journal, Fashion Magazine, and Refinery 29.

Since moving ArtStar’s office to the St. James Building at 1133 Broadway just a few months ago, Chrissy says the new location has made such a difference for them that they are already looking to expand within the building and open up a showroom space. Chrissy is a big fan of the NoMad neighborhood, and lives in the area as well. She loves being able to walk to work with her dachshund, Brian, who has come out of retirement to assist in the office.

We recently sat down with Chrissy to learn about the history of ArtStar, the state of her industry, and where she sees things going from here.

*****

How did ArtStar come about, and how has it grown since you founded it in 2010?

ArtStar was a product of the recession. I was working with a lot of young collectors and I saw their budgets depleting. I also saw a lot of artists really struggling; they would go from having a waiting list to having maybe one sale a year. We started ArtStar as a way for young collectors to still be able to access art – make it easy, make it affordable, put it online, offer framing, offer free shipping. And it’s another revenue stream for artists. We do all the printing and framing, and then, we send the artists a check once a month so they can continue to make money off of their work.

We moved more towards a B2B model in 2014. We do work with a lot of interior designers on residential projects. We also work with larger companies like WeWork, Convene, The Palms Las Vegas, Cole Hahn, Bonobos, Peloton, and more, to help with the art for their showrooms, retail spaces, and hotels.

 

What makes ArtStar stand out as a source for fine art?

Everything on our website is curated. We’re different from other art sites that have thousands of images and thousands of artists. We carefully vet each artist and image on our site. Every artist on ArtStar is a professional – most of our artists have MFAs and gallery representation – so you know what you’re buying is a good piece of art. Also, everything on the site is a limited edition. It’s all numbered, and it comes with a Certificate of Authenticity signed by the artist. It does sell out and it does hold its value – it’s not a poster. Also, all of the art is exclusive to us. We’re not exclusive with the artists, but we are exclusive with each piece that we sell.

 

How do you find these artists and pieces? Are there certain criteria that you look for?

We go to art fairs, galleries, studio visits… We’re constantly searching for new artists. We rarely take submissions, because we do have such an aesthetic. We find that people come to us for a certain look, and we’re very good at curating that look. We only take artists that we personally would want in our home. Every time we’ve taken an artist that we’re not crazy about, they just don’t sell. It’s very much our curation and our vision that guides our success.

 

How would you describe the look and brand that people come to you for?

It’s really fun, young, poppy, and colorful. We love color. A lot of our work has a sense of humor. We find that if we do generic abstracts, they just don’t sell as well. We like things that have neon, or text, or some sort of wit or whimsy to them. People come to us because they like our sense of humor and our work has a sense of personality.

 

Tell us more about your work with corporate and hospitality clients. How does the process work?

We have a trade program on our site that you can use if you are a member of the trade, which is primarily residential. We also have a hospitality art program and a corporate art program. You can sign up, and we send you an exclusive discount and different membership benefits. You get free shipping and you have a dedicated sales person.

For some projects, they want us to curate for them and send a proposal of ideas. For other projects, the designer knows what they want — they just take their promo code, load their cart, use their code, get the discount, and they’re done. It all depends on how you want to work: we can be really high-touch, or we can be completely hands-off.

How has your current location helped your business grow?

I think being based in New York has been helpful, and especially being in a building like this. Everyone is in your building. Interior designers, architects, graphic designers, businesses of all sorts… You can easily interact with people who make decisions for their companies and their clients.

Since we’ve been in this building, we find we’re constantly having designers just stop by, whereas we could not do that on the Lower East Side—we could not get anyone in that office. Here, people come in all the time, both from outside as well as from within the building community.

We’ve already started working with other tenants. Everyone in the building sort of uses each other. It’s also a good way to put a face to the name with your vendors and your clients. It’s been a real asset for us—besides the close proximity to Starbucks!

 

Do you have a favorite trend going on in today’s contemporary art scene? What patterns have you noticed within your industry?

We’ve noticed Europe is interested in and is more open to e-commerce now, so our European sales have grown. And, we find a lot of artists through Instagram now. Instagram is a huge marketing tool for artists. They can experiment with different ideas and get feedback from a lot of people. They can launch new work and immediately have feedback, orders, praise, and then they can tweak their art if people don’t like it. I think it’s an interesting platform now for artists, and they really need to use it as a tool to market themselves.

What works do you find yourself gravitating toward most on a personal level?

I love photography. I have a lot of our work in my home. I love work by Ludwig Favre — I have his rainbow piece in my kitchen. We have Ruth Adler… I like things with color. We have a very monochromatic home, and we use art as our color.

 

Where do you hope to see ArtStar going in the future?

We would like to expand our office and open a showroom. Also, we would like a deeper presence in California. It’s our second biggest market, and we just really believe in it. Expanding to the West Coast would be really valuable to us. And, we’re just constantly looking to grow our portfolio of artists.

 

Do you have advice for someone who doesn’t have experience, who wants to start decorating and collecting with purpose, and graduate from the poster level?

I think prints are a really good solution for new collectors, because their taste is going to evolve over time. When they start collecting, a lot of people spend their entire budget on one piece of art, like one oil painting, but they’ll want to be able to evolve. So, I think a print is a really good idea because of the price point. I would just buy whatever you like. I wouldn’t overthink it or try to make it a good investment. I would just buy what you want in your home and what you want to live with every day.

October 9, 2018

The Townsend Building was built simultaneously with the St. James. Both buildings express very different but wonderful designs because they were created by noted figures in the history of architecture — design leaders of their day. Cyrus L. Eidlitz, who designed the Townsend in a more retrained classical style than the exuberant St. James, was the son of an influential New York architect, Leopold Eidlitz, one of the founders of the American Institute of Architects.  Cyrus was educated in New York, Geneva, Switzerland and Stuttgart, where he studied architecture at the Polytechnic Institute.

Eidlitz is noted for several important buildings, including the Buffalo Library (demolished), the Dearborn Railroad Station (demolished), and the Association of the American Bar of the City of New York at 42 West 44th, which is still occupied by its original occupant — an oddity in New York.

However, he is probably best known for designing One Times Square, the former New York Times Building on Times Square. When the Times moved from Park Row to 42nd Street in 1905, the square was known as Longacre Square, but Eidlitz’s building would eventually give its name to the square.  The building, where the ball has dropped on New Year’s Eve since 1907, was resurfaced in 1963 and has been covered with signage for decades, but the original building is still under there somewhere.

In many ways, just as impressive as these architectural gems are the influences Eidlitz had on the building industry. Eidlitz partnered with structural engineer Andrew C. McKenzie in 1900 to form one of the first firms to put architecture and engineering on an equal footing.  It was the ideal team for its day, because new challenges were appearing all the time — such as building the Times building on an incredibly small slice of property (only 4,000 sq. ft.) over subway lines.  Not only did they create the second tallest building in the city at the time, but also they connected it to a subterranean infrastructure, incorporating the subway stop being built underneath into the basement levels.

Their dual expertise also allowed them to be pioneers in a completely new category of building — the telephone building, something that the firm and its successors would be known for down to the present day.  Their Bell Laboratories building at 463 West Street was for a time the largest industrial research center in the United States. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places and further designated as a National Historic Landmark.

Many early technological inventions were developed in the Bell building, including automatic telephone panel and crossbar switches, the first experimental talking movies (1923), black-and-white and color TV, video telephones, radar, the vacuum tube, medical equipment, the development of the phonograph record and the first commercial broadcasts, including the first broadcast of a baseball game and the New York Philharmonic with Arturo Toscanini conducting. It served as the headquarters for the company from 1925 to the early 1960s.  The site was also the home for part of the Manhattan Project during World War II, and shortly after the war, the transistor was invented here. Richard Meier refitted it in 1970 as the Westbeth Artists Community.

Eidlitz withdrew from the firm in 1910 and died in 1921, but the firm he began with McKenzie would march on through many changes of partnerships over the century.  During these years, the firm became noted for its particular expertise in the technical building field, creating many new Bell buildings, the outstanding deco-styled Western Union Building at 60 Hudson Street, Columbia’s School of Engineering, and The Goddard Space Center, to name only a very few. Today, Eidlitz’s firm still exists under the name of Haines, Lundberg & Waehler (HLW), and its ancestral line is clear.  Just a look at recent projects noted in Wikipedia confirms the firm’s deep involvement with technical buildings and their challenges:

“Exactly 100 years after the firm’s beginning with a commission to design the first telephone building in New York, a new project for NYNEX Corporation was initiated . . . the firm (HLW) has extended to broadcast, film and television industries. For Fox Studios in Los Angeles, HLW created a 50-acre . . . campus that housed the first fully digital network broadcast center.   Additional 21st century work include the United Nations Secretariat Building and . . .  and Google’s East Coast Headquarters at 111 Eighth Avenue.”

The gentleman who designed our building left us and the world quite a legacy.

September 25, 2018

When The Townsend (12 floors) and St. James (16 floors) were built they were among the tallest buildings in the city at the time, but in those days height came with certain reservations. People simply weren’t used to high buildings and elevators were a new invention.  Also, there was public anxiety about the possibility of fire in taller structures, because fire departments weren’t equipped to reach above the sixth and seventh floors.

The Townsend’s initial offering to the public in 1897 included this claim: “The fronts are of stone and it is fireproof throughout.”  The boast would be sorely tested in less than three years by a severe fire. While the claim to fireproofing was made often, Christopher Gray the late architectural writer for The New York Times, noted that The Townsend lived up to its claims:  “In an age when supposedly fireproof buildings regularly burned to the ground, The Townsend Building fire provided an object lesson that fireproof construction, when properly carried out, was not a fiction.”

On the morning of January 1, 1900, a fire broke out in Room 1104 on the eleventh floor of The Townsend at 1123 Broadway, most probably in a desk drawer. The room was 14 ft. wide by 30 ft. deep. Although small, it was subdivided into three smaller rooms by hardwood and glass partitions and filled with desks, papers, cabinets, shelving and furniture — all of which combined to provide a dense amount of flammable material.

It was a holiday so no one was around to notice the fire for some time.  When the building staff became aware they tried to extinguish it with two streams of water, but it had become too severe for them to make any headway.  The fire department came, took charge, and eventually quelled the fire being able to access the floors with the building’s elevators.

Accounts at the time say that sufficient heat was generated that it destroyed everything in the office, warped an iron safe, cracked glass transoms and windows (even at a distance from the fire), and melted the copper cornice on the building’s cornice two floors up. However, the raging fire was contained within Room 1104. Of course, there was smoke and water damage to rooms nearby and below, but the fire never spread because the fireproofing remained intact around the columns, walls, arches of the floor above, and the floor beams.

The Real Estate Record & Guide noted the significance of the limited damage in an article on January 27th, 1900: “The recent fire on the 11th Floor of the Townsend Building, at the corner of 25th St. and Broadway, is of more than passing interest as it demonstrates what has often been claimed for first-class fireproof construction — that a fire can be practically confined to a single room, without damage to the structural parts of the buildings, when properly protected by fire-resisting materials.”

In fact, in 1911, there was tremendous loss of life in the Triangle Waistcoat Factory fire. The great loss of life was due to the fact that it took place on the eight, ninth and tenth floors. The fire department could not reach it, because elevator tracks warped and fire escapes collapsed due to poor pinning into the structure of the building.  There was also poor fireproofing and emergency planning.

So, what was different in the Triangle Waistcoat Factory fire (which took place 11 years later) from that in the Townsend (built four years before the Asch Building?) Nothing, except that the Townsend was so superiorly fireproofed. In fact, The Townsend would become an example of the safety of high-rise construction as the city began to reach higher and higher in the early part of the 20th Century.