Neighborhood Watch:
Steven Alan

StevenAlanPortrait1.jpg With a flagship store in TriBeCa, outposts in NoLIta and the Upper West Side, and more blueprints in the making, Steven Alan is coming of age...and building a mini fashion empire. But despite the Manhattan-wide expansion, the brand (and the guy behind it) remains as down-to-earth as ever. Ask Alan where he might like to meet for lunch and chances are you'll be researching a previously unheard-of street in Chinatown and a restaurant that you probably wouldn't have entered on your own. Alan grew up in Chinatown, so it's not surprising his adventurous taste for fashion translates to cooking, too. Refinery29 joined Alan on a quick spin through his neighborhood, where he shared his favorite haunts between his TriBeCa office and his home which is where else but in Chinatown.
Sanur Restaurant, Indonesian and Malaysian Restaurant 18B Doyer Street, (no phone)
"I only go for breakfast once a week after my tai chi class. I like to be surprised at breakfast, and the buffet is always changing. Usually, I get their combination plate of three things: fried fish, green vegetables, and a curry with tofu. Sometimes, I eat it there, but when I'm in a rush I bring it back to the office. It's the weirdest thing when I eat it at work because people are drinking coffee and having a bagel and I'm sitting at my desk with a fish head."
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Columbus Park, Chinatown, near Baxter, Mulberry and Bayard Streets
"I pass through this park on my walk from the Malaysian place. It's the park that I played at when I was a child. I like to go by there and unwind, walking to work and seeing the older people doing tai chi in the park. They do tai chi in summer, winter, even in the rain."
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Pakistani Tea House, 176 Church Street, 212-240-9800
"The homemade naan is amazing, and they have lots of great vegetable and curry dishes. It's near my office, so it's a great place for lunch. I go there once or twice a week. A lot of taxi drivers eat there. I like it because it's quick, and I get bored with American food."
Manhattan's Children Theater, 52 White Street, 1st Floor, 212-352-3101
"It's a great place to take my son Max to see plays. The woman who owns the theater writes a lot of the plays, and about every three months they have a new performance. My son loves it. His birthday passed recently, and we had a puppet show in the basement of the showroom. It was really great."
MarieBelle, 484 Broome Street, 212-925-6999
"They have one bar at MarieBelle that's 60% chocolate bar from Colombia that's really good. It's dark chocolate but not bitter. They also have a hot cocoa bar and it's all made from real ground coco beans."
NYTTF, Ping Pong Club, 384 Broadway, Lower Level, 212-966-2922
"I was walking down the alley of this place when I lived across the street. There is a main entrance on Broadway and a hidden one on this old alley way. I heard balls going, walked into the door and was totally blown away. You can walk in at any time of day and play."
Eclecticism is a hallmark of Steven Alan's shopping outposts, but this native New Yorker's adventurous spirit runs deeper than just fashion.
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