Seen & Heard: Utilitarian Topper

••• Ari Nikolitsis says that he, and not Victor Falah, is the owner of Tribeca Apothecary, which is the name of what I had been told was an outpost of Beverly Hills Apothecary, opening in the former Aesop space at 138 W. Broadway.

••• The renovation of 81 Warren has been revealed. The original parts are nice, but that topper looks as if all expense was spared. Beyond the fire escape, it bears no relation to the rest of the building, the block, or the neighborhood—a real shame given its prominence, and another reason why historic districts are important. (If the building had been in one, the addition would have required Landmarks approval.) We’ll have to wait to see what happens to the related project at 79 Warren next door. The visible cinder block indicates it’s getting a new curtain wall.

••• Opening June 8 at Bortolami: “The China Chalet Group, Ben Schumacher’s third solo exhibition with Bortolami. For the exhibition, Schumacher has replicated the interior of China Chalet, a Chinese banquet hall turned after-hours club located just around the corner from the New York Stock Exchange. China Chalet became a go-to destination in the late 2000s, attracting a socially diverse clientele seeking an alternative to the stereotypical NYC club scene. It’s still popular today as a venue for surprise DJ sets from pop stars, incognito celebrity sightings, and a meet-up for artists. Schumacher’s replica of China Chalet, made from memory at approximately 3/4 scale, falls somewhere between earnest tribute and satire. Booths, tables, audio equipment and tables are constructed with little more than anodized aluminum, screws, and faux upholstery.”

••• “The Other Two” shoots on Spruce tomorrow. From Deadline: “Created by, written by and executive produced by [former ‘Saturday Night Live’ co-head writers Chris Kelly and Sarah Schneider] ‘The Other Two’ stars Drew Tarver as a 29-year-old aspiring actor wondering why he can’t get better auditions than ‘Man At Party Who Smells Fart,’ and Heléne Yorke as Brooke, his 30-year-old sister and former professional child dancer who aspires to be anything other than what she is right now. As the two siblings work towards finding themselves, they must also confront the dueling emotions of envy and pride brought on by the overnight Internet fame of their younger brother, 12-year-old Chase, played by real-life sensation Case Walker.”

••• “Ray Donovan” shoots in the Reade/W. Broadway area tomorrow, and a film called The Kitchen takes over on Monday. From IMDB: “The wives of New York gangsters in Hell’s Kitchen in the 1970s continue to operate their husbands’ rackets after they’re locked up in prison.” It stars Elisabeth Moss, Melissa McCarthy, and Domhnall Gleason.

••• Poets House’s annual Poetry Walk Across the Brooklyn Bridge is June 11, “with readings by poets Sophie Cabot Black, Tina Chang, Willie Perdomo, Patricia Smith, and Yanyi, as well as special guest Bill Murray. Afterward, we’ll continue with more readings, accompanied by wine, dinner and dessert, inside a beautiful, historic foundry in Dumbo. All proceeds benefit Poets House’s library, public programs, and class trips for children and teens. Tickets begin at $300 general; $275 for Poets House members. Reservations are required.”



  1. RE: 79 Warren the obvious question is:
    Were there no matching bricks available anywhere?
    This is a real “head shaker”!

    • No, it is really not a “head shaker”, even as ugly as this addition may be.

      If one is not inclined (or required by law) to set the addition back so as to make it invisible from a public thoroughfare, the *worst* thing one can do from a preservation point of view is to use identical, historical materials for the addition. That will only confuse the public by making it difficult to distinguish old from new and making it difficult to discern what portion of the historic building is truly historic.

      Would it have been better to make the addition more compatible and sympathetic? Yes. Would it have been better to make it matching? No.