Just steps from the blinding fury that is SoHo, seemingly the shopping Mecca of nearly every slow-moving body that ever came into existence, Bond Street occupies an enviously charming–and comparatively quieter–slice of the NoHo district. All cobblestone and character, Bond Street has lived nearly a dozen lives, each decade providing a shift in the landscape. From its initial iteration, the original residential row houses of the 1830s were eventually replaced with a more, uh hem, downtrodden clientele (as stated in a New York Times article from 1999, according to a 1870 census, the block had “an actress, a minstrel and a reporter—a sure sign that Bond’s fortunes were in steep decline.” My, how times have changed.
Myriad shops and transformations later, Bond Street is in its current state—a combination of old and new (all of it high-rent). Few places in the city offer you the variety of experience in such a laidback, relatively untouched environment. Let’s keep this place our little secret though, shall we?
Herewith, our guide for Block Party: Bond Street.
Hey, Remember When Artists Actually Lived Here?
Likely one of the only large spaces on Bond Street still covered in all sorts of paint supplies, BLICK Art Materials lives on, carrying the memory of the illegally squatting artists and their hidden mattresses of yore. For serious artists and novices alike. If you’re just passing through and not in the market for a 10×10 canvas, you can always settle with simply snapping up a journal to document your travels and one of a hundred pens with which to scribble.
1 Bond St, New York, NY 10012
Another Restaurant Depleting the World’s Kale Resources
I know, I know. Don’t roll your eyes when we start talking about another kale salad—a topic that has surely been exhausted within your more health-conscious social circles. But, seriously, when it comes to delicious, uber trendy super foods, Il Buco has nearly everyone beat with their Tuscan black kale salad with garlic-anchovy-lemon vinaigrette, filone croutons, and Parmigiano Reggiano. If you’re not a kale diehard, there are plenty of delicious things on the menu of this cozy neighborhood Italian joint, from grilled whole Spanish dorade to one of any number of melt-in-your-mouth pastas.
47 Bond St, New York, NY 10012
Life in Monochrome
For those whose style errs on the side of a Tory Burch-meets-Lilly-Pulitzer palate, OAK is not for you. The store, a veritable exercise in dressing solely in shades of black and white (gray, if you really must), is for the quietly tasteful—those who understand the importance and nuance of texture, of quality, of dressing like an urban fashion ninja. With structural showpieces from Anne Sofie Madsen, geometric masterpieces from Kaelen, and all sorts of more casual selections from OAK’s private label collection, you’ll leave with a wardrobe sure to blend in with a decidedly downtown New York crowd. Ninja, indeed.
28 Bond St, New York, NY 10012
But on the Brighter Side…
Bond Street isn’t all fashionable doom and gloom. Lightening things up a bit is A.P.C., a French label that blends seamlessly with a more classic American sartorial sentiment. Think clean lines, crisp cotton, a khaki pant or two.
49 Bond St., New York, NY
Just a Nosh Will Do
If the daunting prospect of subjecting yourself to the ordering gauntlet that is the Katz’s Deli counter is enough to make you refill that Xanax prescription, perhaps you would be better (and more quietly served) at Mile End Sandwich, what one might describe as a subway tiled “food boutique.” An offshoot of its progenitor, Mile End Deli in Brooklyn, MES is a great place to grab a chicken salad sandwich or a Ruth Wilensky for lunch, or a Blackseed bagel and a cup of Stumptown coffee for breakfast.
53 Bond St, New York, 10012
Illustration by Max Wittert.