When Berlin based digital magazine The Avant Garde Diaries ( found their new auspices in Nolita– they enlisted designer/curator Ariel Stark-Benz to make their house a home. The former Director of Guest Services of the Tribeca & Soho Grand Hotels has plenty of experience with that, and on the side, remains an avid DJ who continues to serve as Music Director for Nomenus Quarterly (, and Creative Director of his own label Gentlemen's Bet ( He has even been called a blogger ( If you don't find him at AVGD H.Q., he's at the beach or in his studio.

What would the title of your autobiography be?
Not Bad Meaning Bad, But Bad Meaning Good

What can’t you travel without?
A skateboard. It’s the best way to traverse an urban setting. Most preferably my late 60’s Marco Polo banana board, but if packing is in an issue, I will normally buy one. I picked one up a couple of years ago while touring through China– it was hands down the best decision I made that entire trip.

What is your favorite travel destination?
Tokyo, though never a dull moment in Paris, either.

If you could choose one person to show you ‘their new york city’ who would it be?
Warhol. Or Fab 5.

What or who has inspired you recently and why?
I am continually inspired by the strength and creativity of dear friends… and clean surf days at Rockaway.