The comeback block–For 97 years the American retailer of hard-to-find tools, Hammacher Schlemmer occupied the commercial space at 147 East 57th, located between Third and Lexington Avenues until they closed their doors in February of this year. Undoubtedly, the consequences of e-commerce and the pandemic were major factors in their decision. Hammacher Schlemmer still maintains a website that includes cutting edge technology gadgets, hard-to-find tools, apparel sports and leisure items. And they continue to publish their iconic catalog and maintain headquarters in Illinois. But no more NY. About six months after their closing, a new commercial tenant is up and running in the space–the family-owned 115-year old Danish furniture company, Carl Hansen & Son, which is known for classical furniture designs by leading contemporary designers as well as their collaboration with contemporary designers. The owner and CEO, Knud Erik Hansen, is the grandson of the founder. The all-glass-front showroom is fully visible from 57th Street. You can see the Wishbone Chairs and geometric and elliptical tables and other furnishings for which they’re known throughout the showroom. There’s another location on Park Avenue South..
A restaurant newbie - Another early fatality of Covid was the Le Colonial restaurant, a neighbor of Hammacher Schlemmer. Le Colonial was an upscale, elegant two-story venue with an upstairs bar that was the go-to pace for excellent Vietnamese cuisine and casual fine dining. Online reviewers described it as “A delightful culinary experience.” Now, at long last, there’s a new restaurant at the location, Adare, which self-describes as a “Fusion of Sophistication and New American Cuisine. The setting is lovely. Elegant, low-key, sophisticated. The upstairs lounge serves tapas and cocktails and opens at 4 in the afternoon seven days a week. The menu, as described, “blends European techniques with global flavors...and NYC’s multicultural food scene.” Ambitious. While Adare’s atmosphere accords with fine dining the menu selection could use fine tuning. Owner Michael Certulo is also the owner and Executive Chef at the popular Italian restaurant Scalini Fedeli in Tribeca. Welcome to East 57th Street, Adare.
Bway stars celebrate unsung heroes -The American Theatre Wing’s 2023 Gala celebrated unsung heroes at Cipriani 42nd Street earlier this month. Broadway stars nominated an unsung hero in their life - a voice coach, a doctor, a school teacher. It was a Who’s Who of the Broadway community from executives to dozens of actors. Melissa Etheridge, The Coopers (Chuck, Lilli & Eddie), Leslie Odom, Jr. Shoshana Bean, Judy Kuhn, Ariana DeBose, LaChanze and Julie Halston. Eli Marcus, the longest serving person in the hospitality industry, with over 40 years of service, was there. Best known for City Guide Magazine (NYC’s Visitor’s Magazine), Eli’s known as the Mayor of Times Square for his ubiquitous presence in Times Square and the theatre world. He’s also the host of The Motivation Show podcast. Beyond Broadway, Eli has interviewed NY’s John Catsimatidis, the supermarket mogul behind Gristedes and D’Agostinos, who recently tossed a gala to celebrate the 100th anniversary of WABC-AM 770, which he owns through his Red Apple Media.