Photography by William Ross; Make-up by Joseph Carillo

Jane Keltner de Valle

Style Director, Architectural Digest

| Dumbo

We’re running through the streets of Manhattan, a sweaty, hot mess with humidity-ridden locks to boot, when we spot Jane Keltner de Valle seemingly gliding down the sidewalk in an A-line skirt and lady pumps and suddenly, all is right in the world. The Style Director of Arch Digest, Keltner de Valle is the human equivalent of a swan: with the phlegmatic poise of Lauren Bacall and the quiet elegance of Grace Kelly, trust us when we say you can put her in the throngs of chaos (ahem, New York Fashion Week) and her platinum chops will still be in place, her skirt pressed and her shoes polished. She’s a near permanent fixture on street style blogs, though she’s as known for her quippy writing as she is her girlish OOTD’s. Born and raised in New York City, she’s been in the fashion biz for a long time: after interning at W and Women’s Wear Daily, she clocked in at ELLE, TeenVOGUE (she was TV’s Fashion News Director for 10 years) and later Glamour before joining the AD team. Recently moving to Brooklyn with her husband, NY architect Giancarlo Valle, and son (she may be the chicest mother of all time), Keltner de Valle sits down with CITIPHILE to reveal her little black book on NYC.

NEIGHBORHOOD STANDBY: Vinegar Hill House (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x)— it’s cozy and delicious.

COFFEE OR TEA: Green iced tea from Starbucks because it’s within arm’s reach.

ALL-TIME FAVORITE RESTAURANT: The Grill (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x). It has modernist architecture, a pool in the center of the dining room, an art collection that rivals The MoMA (MAP IT, x) and a powerhouse crowd— perfection.

COCKTAIL DE LA NUIT: A vodka soda with lime from Bemelman’s Bar (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) at The Carlyle. That place never gets old.

AFTER-WORK HAPPY HOUR: The Mercer Hotel (MAP IT, x).

LADIES LUNCH: Sant Ambroeus on Lafayette Street (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x).

BEST BRUNCH: In Roxbury, CT, we go to Mamie’s (MAP IT, x) for farm fresh eggs and house-baked bread. In Dumbo, it’s Luke’s Lobster (MAP IT, x) for lobster rolls or the back garden at Gran Electrica (MAP IT, x).

BEST PEOPLE WATCHING: Indochine (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x).

HEALTHY STAPLE: Le Pain Quotidien‘s avocado toast.

GUILTY PLEASURE: Almondine‘s (MAP IT, x) croissants.

NY’S BEST-KEPT SECRET: Breakfast at The Odeon (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x). It’s a five minute walk from our offices and it’s a New York classic. They just started serving breakfast so it has yet to be “discovered” at that hour.

FIRST THING I MISS WHEN I’M AWAY: Being able to order anything, anytime.

REGULAR AT: One Girl Cookies (MAP IT, x) for to-go breakfast en route to the office, Locanda Verde (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) for business lunches and the Condé cafeteria for coffee meetings with an “only in New York” view.

DATE NIGHT STANDBY: Omen (MAP IT, x) for a sashimi dinner.

KID-FRIENDLY STAPLE: Brooklyn Bridge Park (MAP IT, x) and Jane’s Carousel (MAP IT, x).

TO SEE AND BE SEEN: The Polo Bar (MAP IT, BOOK ITx) has a fun mix of old New York establishment and young, cool kids.

TO ESCAPE AND UNWIND: We go to Roxbury, CT on the weekends— it has an impressive food scene for a quiet, rural place. My favorite thing to do there is scour the local farm stands and grill at home. Arethusa (MAP IT, x), which is owned by Manolo Blahnik President George Malkemus, has fresh milk, eggs and cheese straight from his farm, plus the best ice cream. He also has a lovely trattoria next door which is as good as any restaurant in New York. G.W. Tavern (MAP IT, x) is a pub-style restaurant that’s nice for a casual family dinner and I like the bar at Mayflower Inn (MAP IT, x) for drinks. Community Table (*Location now closed) is also very good— it’s a farm-to-table concept applied to fine dining in a country setting. In the summertime, I love going to West Shore Seafood (MAP IT, x) for lobster rolls, followed by ice cream at Arethusa.

CLOSET CHECK: My personal style is polished, smart and feminine. I tend to buy investment pieces that i can wear over and over for many years, rather than anything too trendy. I’m a big believer in wearing and re-wearing. I like one-stop shopping because it’s efficent— Barneys (MAP IT, x) and Bergdorf Goodman (MAP IT, x) are great, or online at Net-a-Porter.

BEST HOME DÉCOR: We just moved to a new home so I’ve been doing a lot of furniture shopping lately. Some of my favorites include Wyeth (MAP IT, x), Egg Collective (MAP IT, x), BDDW (MAP IT, x) and Matter (MAP IT, x).

FOR THE KIDS: Bonpoint (MAP IT) and Makie (MAP IT, x) for clothing, Little Eric (MAP IT, x) on the Upper East Side for shoes. For books, there is a great little shop in Carnegie Hill called The Corner Bookstore (MAP IT, x) that I’ve been going to since I was a child.

BEST HOST/HOSTESS GIFTS: Jacques Torres (MAP IT, x) in my neighborhood for chocolate, Diptyque (MAP IT, x) for candles and Gracious Home (MAP IT, x) for monogrammed linens.

BEAUTY BLACK BOOK: Gina (x) at Serge Normant (MAP IT, BOOK ITx) for highlights— she does a great blonde and the salon just moved into the most beautiful townhouse in Chelsea. When the weather is nice, you can sit in the garden and sip iced tea while having your hair done— heaven! I go to Pasquale Ferrante (x) for cuts— Hilary Rhoda, who I featured in my first issue at Glamour, turned me onto him!

FIT PICK: Does chasing after my son count? In the summertime, I swim at our house in Connecticut on the weekends, but since going back to work from maternity leave, I haven’t been to the gym once— the time I have with Roman in the mornings and evenings is too precious. I wish I knew the secret to how some working moms squeeze it ALL in!

ULTIMATE NY MOMENT: I’ve lived in New York my whole life so I have a lot of “only in New York” moments! But, my favorite would be the office holiday party my sister dragged me to at Superfine (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) in Dumbo where I met my now-husband. At the time, there was a blizzard and a transit strike and Brooklyn felt like Siberia to me; I almost didn’t go. Now, nine-plus years later, the man I met there is my husband, we have a one and a half year old son and we are living in Dumbo! CP

Jane’s New York

From L to R: First Row: The backyard at Gran Electrica; Seasonal bite at Vinegar Hill House; Arethusa Farm; Inside The Grill. Second Row: Clothing at Makie; Décor by Egg Collective; Luke’s Lobster lobster roll; Mamie’s.

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