New Kid on the Block: HomBom Toys

Henry Gayer’s cousin founded the original HomBom Toys on the Upper East Side and ran it for about 20 years before Gayer’s wife, Ilene, took over seven years ago. She has since opened three more locations—another on the Upper East Side, one on the Upper West Side, and now, one on Greenwich Street in Tribeca (where the Gallery Vietnam was). “My wife really runs it with my twin daughters, Melissa and Alison,” explained Henry yesterday. “I’m just keeping an eye on things today.”

The store is packed with toys, from mass-market ones kids might learn about on TV to ones that are more about education and creativity, from the latest craze to classics like Hot Wheels and Silly Putty. And soon there will be even more room: A small wall is scheduled to come down, creating an alcove on the right. The rear half of HomBom’s space, meanwhile, will be party area shared by the toy store and neighboring Viet Café. (It’s worth peeking back there.)

And in case you were wondering, Gayer’s cousin’s daughter’s first words were “hom bom.”

HomBom Toys is at 345 Greenwich (between Harrison and Jay), 212-226-7456,

Recent New Kid on the Block/First Impressions articles:
Matt Bernson
Kaffe 1668
Potbelly Sandwich Shop
The Ludlow Shop
Hale Organic Salon
Super Linda
Lotus Blue



  1. hopefully they charge actual retail for lego instead of inflating the price 20% like boomerang- why anyone would shop there is beyond logic

  2. Boomerang Toys provides a very necessary service to this neighborhood. Their prices cannot possibly compete with Toys-R-Us or Amazon and stay in business but when you are in need of a last minute gift or just want to treat your child to something special, I am always happy to support this local small business owned by a local family.

  3. I am happy to support local businesses and brick and mortars in general. That said, unless the owner of Boomerang happened to be in the shop, every one of the many times I popped in for a gift or treat, I left shaking my head at either the indifferent or nonexistent customer service I received by the employees of Boomerang. I’m all for a little competition in this market and must say that my experience at my recent visit to Hombom left me feeling no remorse for any savings I potentially lost out on by not choosing Amazon.