Manhattan's Most Eligible Bachelors
by john bobey
photography by david needleman
FROM LEFT: Lee Ellenberg, Steve Guttenberg and Ronnie Bass. ON ELLENBERG: Tuxedo, John Varvatos ($1,895). 122 Spring St., 212-965-0700. Shirt, DKNY ($65). 655 Madison Ave., 212-223-3569. Tie, Brooks Brothers ($115). 346 Madison Ave., 212-682-8800. Shoes, Salvatore Ferragamo ($530). Barneys New York, 660 Madison Ave., 212-826-8900. ON GUTTENBERG: Suit, Hugo Boss ($795). 401 W. 14th St., 646-336-8170. Shirt ($235) and pocket square ($85), Giorgio Armani. 760 Madison Ave., 212-988-9191. Tie, Simon Spurr ($145). Bergdorf Goodman, 754 Fifth Ave., 212-753-7300. Belt, Bonobos ($98). Shoes, Kenneth Cole ($148). 95 Fifth Ave., 212-675-2550. ON BASS: Tuxedo ($2,290), shirt ($295) and bow tie ($175), Burberry. 9 E. 57th St., 212-407-7100. Watch, Audemars Piguet ($23,400). 65 E. 57th St., 212-688-6644. Shoes, Salvatore Ferragamo ($570). 655 Fifth Ave., 212-754-5200.
There’s a great movie from 1965 called How to Murder Your Wife, starring Jack Lemmon as swinging Manhattan bachelor Stanley Ford. In the opening scene, we learn that Ford is single and loving it. He entertains a different woman every night of the week in his swank townhouse, and life would be downright uncivilized without the perfect martini. Ah, those were the days—or were they?
It seems that being a Manhattan bachelor in the new millennium is less about too many women and more about not enough time. In the next few pages you’ll meet some of Gotham’s most eligible, grouped according to the worlds they inhabit. While none is quite as caddish as Lemmon’s Stanley Ford (OK, maybe a couple), all feel that settling down would mean cheating on their first love—their career. Ladies and gentlemen, if you’re going to snatch any of these catches off the market, you’d better be ready to compete with their main squeezes of “in” restaurants, outside-the-box art, being on-camera and off-the-wall funny. Good luck.
Lee Ellenberg, Comedy Writer
Even though he’s spent the last 11 years of his career as a writer for The Late Show with David Letterman, helping to maintain Dave’s signature snark, Lee Ellenberg is still the embodiment of the nice Jewish boy from Brooklyn. While a lot of guys in his position might use their comedy chops to keep a different girl laughing every night of the week, Lee is a true family man, cut from more old-fashioned cloth. “I wanted to be married when I was 17; I had a very idealized notion of what marriage is. Being the last one of my friends to be married has been enormously helpful, because I see the good, I see the bad. I no longer want a perfect marriage; I just want to feel perfectly about my marriage.”
Steve Guttenberg, Actor
In the movies, the guy always gets the girl. While Steve Guttenberg has been privy to all kinds of action on camera (even an alien in Cocoon), once someone yells “Cut,” he’s still single. As he readies for the opening of his new play (Relatively Speaking, premiering on October 20), Steve is viewing his bachelorhood philosophically. “I don’t want to be a playboy. I think that spiritually, it’s healthy to be connected to somebody. In thinking about the old saying, ‘you haven’t found the right one,’ maybe I haven’t become the right one yet to myself? But I do think that the time might be approaching.”
Ronnie Bass, Artist
It’s easy to imagine that on-the-scene visual artist and musician Ronnie Bass is living the dream (check out his work at New York’s I-20 Gallery starting November 5). As a handsome, successful New York artist, all he needs now is to meet the right girl and settle down—or not. “I like being in relationships. I like being in serious relationships, but a family is something that I don’t know if I want to take responsibility for right now. I don’t know if that’s a good thing to say; I just wouldn’t want to be unfair.”
Styling by Alvaro Salazar
Grooming by Elisa Flowers and Sylvester Castellano for Dior Beauty at ba-reps.com