The TCQ&A: “Last Halloween, a Client Dressed Her Son as a Lobster in a Pot”

In 2003, when Judy Dunne opened Butter and Eggs, her home-design store at the corner of West Broadway and Warren, one of her longterm plans was to also have a design firm—but the requests started coming in almost immediately. By 2007, she closed the store to focus on designing, and she and her husband, developer Charles Dunne, moved to Soho. “I have such a soft spot for Tribeca,” she says. “The first day the store was open, a woman came in and she said she wanted to buy something simply because she lived across the street and was excited to support a new store.” Dunne is down here all the time helping clients who live in the area, and in the fall, she’ll be moving back across the border and into 33 Vestry—her husband is the developer—once it’s ready. P.S. She says another store isn’t out of the question….

Which restaurants do you frequent most often?
It’s nearly impossible to have a bad meal in Tribeca: Landmarc, Thalassa, Nobu Next Door, and Greenwich Grill, to name a few, all have great atmosphere, food, and wine. Also, Ecco [left] on Chambers Street is a real gem hidden in plain sight and Ray, the manager, is terrific.

Which restaurants do you tend to go to for special occasions?
Greenwich Grill is my new favorite for any and all occasions. The food is great and the staff are incredibly nice and accommodating.

Where do you order in (or get take-out) from? Are there dishes you always order?
Wichcraft and Columbine are delicious for lunch while Zutto and Roc are dinner favorites. (At Wichcraft, I love how you can go online and pre-order food  to be ready at a specified time. It’s awesome to be able to breeze in and grab food or a latte with no waiting during a busy lunch hour.)

Which shops do you find it hard to resist popping into when you pass by?
There are so many great shops in Tribeca, especially in my line of work—Steven Sclaroff, Mondo Cane, Karkula, Room, Hostler Burrows, and Carini Lang [right] always have something interesting that inspires me.

What was the last non-essential item you bought in Tribeca?
Brownies and ice cream sandwiches at Tribeca Treats—they are heavenly.

Are there any services (salon, fitness, etc.) that you’re particularly glad are in the neighborhood?
I have been training at Real Pilates for years—they have some of the best instructors in New York. Of course this makes sense because Alycea, the owner, will accept no less. SoulCycle is a great new addition to the neighborhood. They are offering some really interesting new classes in their schedule.

What’s Tribeca’s best-kept secret?
Definitely the Inside Tribeca Loft Tour which happens in October with the proceeds benefiting the Friends of Duane Park [left: a stop on a previous tour]. Also, my hands down favorite, Halloween, because all of the kids are out trick or treating in the neighborhood. It’s an epic amount of cuteness—last year, one of my clients dressed her son as a lobster in a lobster pot. It was unreal.

Where do you always take out-of-towners?
Brunch at Locanda Verde followed by a walk along the promenade in an attempt to burn off the calories.

Which neighborhood building do you wish you lived in and/or owned?
No contest—it would be the firehouse on N. Moore [right], especially since it’s the Ghostbusters firehouse.

What’s your favorite part of Tribeca (street, park, whatever)?
I like the northern part of Greenwich Street because it reminds me of a movie set, especially at night.

Your most memorable Tribeca celebrity sighting?
Tracey Ullman having dinner with Meryl Streep at Greenwich Grill—even after living in New York City for over 20 years and seeing a zillion celebrities, that was really cool.

If you could change one thing about the neighborhood, what would it be?
I wouldn’t actually change anything. Tribeca is a very special neighborhood and I feel fortunate to be able to spend so much time there.

What’s changed in Tribeca that you like? That you don’t?
I believe that Tribeca has been “discovered,” which is not really terrible because it has become a hub in lower Manhattan. The only downside I have found is that it is no longer possible to find a parking spot, especially on weekends.

Why Tribeca?
It is has the perfect blend of urban and small town at the same time. It is still very much a neighborhood.

Any questions you wish you’d been asked?
Do you know a good interior designer?

Previous TCQ&As:
Donna Marotta: “The Number of Nail Salons Baffles Me”
• Susan Bernfield: “I Almost Invited Jon Stewart Over on Passover”
• Paulette Goto: “I Buy ‘Play-Date Punch’ at Chambers Street Wines”
• Wendy Gardner: “I Bought a Stuffed Wombat at Moomah”
• Dan Rubenstein: Kitchenette’s Turkey Meatloaf Is My Favorite


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