New Kid on the Block: BaBoo

New to the Tribeca Design District comes BaBoo, a fabulous home design store curated — and I use that term literally since most of her merchandise is indeed art — by owner Galit Chay.

Galit founded the shop in 2013 in San Francisco, and the way she tells it, she was just biding her time until she could bring her concept “home” to New York City.

“New York city was always home for me,” says Galit, who lived here at the end of the ’90s while she got her mater’s in organizational psychology at Columbia. “This is the place to do the most interesting things, to meet the most interesting people. I feel like San Francisco for 10 years was an experiment and now this is the real thing.”

Certainly her business thrived in San Fran: she first opened a small — 500 square feet — boutique in Presidio Heights. Slowly she built the business to the trade, working mostly with interior designers whose clients were the West Coast biggies: Google, Salesforce, Lyft. She then moved to a bigger showroom in the Design District during covid but kept the retail component; she popped up briefly here on Bond Street in 2019.

But covid cemented her need to come back to the city. “California is a big fan of social distance and I’m the opposite. It’s ok to touch! And all the products I have here are about touch — you have to feel it.”

There is craft behind each object she sells, and she sources them directly from artisans all over the world. There are animal stools found in Tokyo, tableware from Spain, giant felted “rocks” from South Africa, and of course — since she is Israeli — many products from artists that Galit knows personally.

“It’s the love of beautiful things, yes, and admiring artists who do beautiful things with their hands,” Galit says. “But it’s not just the product, it is the people. It’s the relationship you have with the makers.”

After getting her degree here, Galit was a management consultant in Israel, but she never loved the inherent politics in the work. When her husband was moved to the US for his job with Google in 2008, she couldn’t work for three years and used that time to study interior design. By 2013 she had opened the business.

(She adopted the name from an Israeli lighting company that she represented at the start; the lighting company closed, but the name stuck.)

There’s a real range of products in the store — both custom pieces that must be ordered and installed as well as home goods that you can walk out with that day. And there’s a little bit of everything.

“I feel like I’m managing the general store of 100 years ago,” Galit said.

90 Franklin (271 Church)


1 Comment

  1. Thank you so much for welcoming us !