Photography by Eric Isaac

Laura de Gunzburg

Director of Membership, The Cultivist

| Greenwich Village

Things you’re likely to see should you scroll through Laura de Gunzburg’s Instagram feed: a technicolor, stacked freight sculpture inside Paris’ Grand Palais, a plastic pool float dressed up as a pepperoni pizza slice, and a gilded serpent brooch as long as her forearm. In other words, clearly art isn’t just the girl’s “9-to-5.” Speaking of her weekdays though, de Gunzburg spends her time at The Cultivist, the private, New York and London-based arts club, for which she oversees membership. A SoHo-House-meets-Whitney-Museum-Director’s-Council, The Cultivist is the art world’s proverbial red carpet: with its “museum card,” never will you or your friends have to wait in a museum line again (let alone pay for entry), plus the club organizes private viewings of new exhibitions, studio visits with world-renowned artists, and will even curate personal itineraries for must-see art when traveling. The trailblazing community is precisely the where we’d expect to find the Paris-born de Gunzburg, who, after stints at Sotheby’s, Miami’s The Margulies Collection and NYC’s Pace Gallery, went on to found Dia Art Foundation’s now-celebrated Art Council. In her free time, she pens the monthly column, This Season in Art, for Cultured Magazine (she’s a contributing editor at the contemporary art pub) and, occasionally, springs for that pizza slice-assisted pool dip. Here, de Gunzburg sits down with CITIPHILE to reveal her little black book on NYC.

NEIGHBORHOOD STANDBY: You can never go wrong with Bar Pitti (MAP IT, x)– the lobster spaghetti and the mushrooms are insane.

COFFEE OR TEA: If I’m downtown, I’ll head to O Cafe (MAP IT, x) because they have delicious Matcha (which I am obsessed with). Otherwise, the best coffee is at Via Quadronno (MAP IT, x), without question!

ALL-TIME FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Indochine (MAP IT, BOOK ITx). I can’t even begin to count how many birthdays I have had there! I usually just order a bunch of appetizers: the chicken ravioli, kale salad, summer rolls, eggplant and the spicy beef salad.

COCKTAIL DE LA NUIT: A spicy margarita; I love the ones at SoHo House (MAP IT, x)!

LADIES LUNCH: For work-related lunches, I really like Claudette (MAP IT, BOOK IT,  x)– it is right around the corner from my office. I also go to Freds at Barneys (x)–both the uptown and downtown locations often– and Amaranth (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) and Le Charlot (MAP IT, x).

AFTER-WORK HAPPY HOUR: I really like this little wine bar called Alta (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x).

MUSIC PICK: My yoga instructor, Ibarra ! Every Friday, we do yoga at my office and Alexa Ibarra (MAP ITBOOK IT, x) always has the best playlists!

BEST BRUNCH: The mushroom omelet with tomato sauce from Sant Ambroeus (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) is everything, but I also love the avocado toast at Egg Shop (MAP IT, x) and the frittata at Lafayette (MAP IT, x).


HEALTHY STAPLE: Hu Kitchen (MAP IT, x) is always easy. I get a few side vegetables and the roasted chicken. I also really like the warm ginger bowls from Roast (MAP IT, x) and anything at Cafe Clover (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x).

GUITLY PLEASURE: I could have sushi for almost every meal. My favorites are Kappo Masa (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x), Nobu (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x), Sushi Seki (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) and Sushi Yasuda (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x).

NY’S BEST-KEPT SECRET: Postmates (x)!

FIRST THING I MISS WHEN I’M AWAY: How easy and efficient everything is and the fact that there is an app for almost anything you can think of. For instance, I spend a fair amount of time in London and I feel like I have to be much more organized when I’m there; people look at you like you have five heads if you tell them you’re going to “messenger” your gym bag home from the office so that you can leave straight from work to meet friends…

REGULAR AT: If I am home for an extended amount of time, I would say there is always a good chance you can find me at Agata & Valentina (MAP IT, x). It is right around the corner from my apartment and everything is always really fresh and gourmet. I never really eat at home, but they have great snacks that I always love to put out when I am having friends over.

DATE NIGHT STANDBY: That is up to the guy… no pressure!

DELIVERY GO-TO: Serafina (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x), Village Taverna (MAP IT, x) or Sushi Seki.

TO SEE AND BE SEEN: The lobby of The Bowery Hotel (MAP IT, x).

TO ESCAPE AND UNWIND: The garden at The Frick Museum (MAP IT, x).

TO GET INSPIRED: The studios at the New York Academy of Art in Tribeca (MAP IT, x).

ARTIST TO WATCH: I really like the work of young London-based, French-Lebanese sculptor, Flavie Audie (x).

ALL-TIME FAVORITE ARTIST: Felix Gonzales Torres (x) and Agnes Martin (x).

Everyone needs at least one piece by an artist you have met and whose work you feel a connection to when it comes to building a personal art collection.

FOR NEW ART: Almine Rech just opened a new gallery in New York (MAP IT, x) and she has a really fantastic program. Also, this may be a bit bias, but Cultured Magazine always features great young artists!

BEST ART DEALS: I always find new interesting young artists when browsing through charity auctions; you can get a great deal too.

GO-TO GETAWAY: The ultimate getaway for me is going to the Dia Beacon (MAP IT, x)– there is nothing quite like walking around those galleries on a beautiful sunny afternoon (or, even, on a snowy day in the middle of winter). The light that flows through the Richard Serra sculptures [there] is insane!

CLOSET CHECK: For the most part, I would say my day-to-day is quite casual. I’m either in my workout clothes (if I don’t have meetings) or a pair of Aquazzura flats with a skirt and sweater. When I’m out for work events, I dress up a bit more. I love wearing all the designers represented by Creo Consulting (x)– they represent somewhat-emerging, Latin designers that not everyone knows about yet. Everything is really fresh and comfortable, yet put together. I do most of my shopping online on Net-A-Porter and Maison-de-Mode, or in-store at Barneys (MAP IT, x) and Fivestory (MAP IT, x)– Claire has the best eye!

BEST HOST/HOSTESS GIFTS: I love sending flowers, either from Ovando (MAP IT, x) or from Michael George (MAP IT, x). Otherwise, a candle from Dyptique (MAP IT, x) is nice.

BEAUTY BLACK BOOK: I love my habits; when you go to the same places, you always know what to expect! When it comes to my hair, if I am getting a blow-out, I rely on Fernando Valencia (BOOK IT, x)– he comes to me a couple times per week and he’s really quick. When I need a cut or to get my highlights done, I go to Alessandro (x) at Alessandro Mangerini Salon (MAP IT, x); I’ve been going to him since I moved to New York and my whole family goes to him as well. For my skin, I go to Dr. David Orentreich (MAP IT, x) for the best deep cleaning; or, if I want something a bit more relaxing, I go to Aida Bicaj (MAP IT, x) for facials (Juan does the best pedicures there too and you can have one done at the same time as your facial). Lastly, I go to Tasha at Joey Healy (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) for my brows, and Luanne at SheWinks (MAP IT, x) for my lashes.

FIT PICK: I love SoulCycle (MAP IT, x), but I am always drenched after those classes and during the week, I just don’t have the time to wash my hair after every workout so I only make it to Soul on the weekends. During the week, I train with Matt at Clay (MAP IT, x), take class at New York Pilates (MAP IT, x) and do yoga with Alexa Ibarra.

ULTIMATE NY MOMENT: Running into a taxi outside of Barneys when it’s raining… CP

Laura’s New York

From L to R: First Row: Salad From The Village Taverna; Candle from Dyptique; Breakfast at Sant Ambroeus; Creo Consulting. Second Row: Flavie Audi ; The Frick Collection; Sushi Yasuda; Muffins from O Cafe

From L to R: First Row: Greek salad From Village Taverna; Dyptique; Breakfast at Sant Ambroeus; Fashion from Creo Consulting. Second Row: Work by Flavie Audi; Installation at The Frick Collection; Sushi Yasuda; Muffins from O Café.


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