Acquainted: An Interview With Babba C Rivera

Grandlife interviews

Acquainted: An Interview With Babba C Rivera

back to list

Acquainted is a three-part series featuring conversations with downtown entrepreneurs based out of Spring Place in Tribeca. First up, we talk to Babba C Rivera, a native-born Swede who has made serious ground in New York since making the city her home in 2015. After a stint as the marketing manager for Uber, during which time she earned a spot on the Forbes 30 under 30 list, Babba lent her know-how to luggage label Away as the director of brand marketing, before officially launching her brand marketing agency, bybabba, in 2017. Here, she makes the case for subverting the status quo, taking note of the in-between moments, and forever striving for a new norm. Plus she shares a few of her favorite downtown spots.

Where’s home for you in New York? How long have you lived there?     

Babba C Rivera: Brooklyn Heights. I’ve lived there since the summer but it’s been a renovation project, to say the least, so I feel like it’s not until recently that I truly started to ‘live’ there.

What do you remember most vividly about your first few months in the city?

BCR: I moved to New York nearly five years ago; I lived in the East Village. I remember feeling so energized by the feeling of the city truly never sleeping. I loved that I could get dinner at Frankie’s at any time of the day, even if that meant at 1am after going out on a Monday.

What appealed to you about joining Spring Place?

BCR: I was looking for an office but didn’t yet have a team, so I was looking for a place where I could interact with others on a similar journey as myself, but also a place where I could grow. I have been a member since June 2017, and I love that I have been able to truly grow my business from here and that I now am able to host a team of 10 people under the same roof. I love that I get to build a team here, while also growing my network and having all the amenities that make my day-to-day easier, such as having a restaurant in the same building with a top chef, convenient concierge services and fun event programming.

In what ways is downtown New York a source of inspiration for you?

BCR: I love downtown New York! It’s so vibrant and ever-changing. I’m grateful to have my office here as I still get to be part of the downtown pulse, without having to live here anymore. My home is just 15 minutes over the bridge and I truly feel like I am getting the best of both worlds.

How do keep yourself motivated and your ideas fresh when working on new projects and collaborations?

BCR: I think my most creative ideas come in the in-between moments, which is why I try to keep a balance between the go-go mentality and having some slow mornings with my dog and a good book. This contrast is what drives my creativity.

Is there a mantra that you live by or feel best summarizes the guiding principle behind bybabba?  

BCR: To always question the status quo and never stop dreaming of a new norm.

Can you tell us a few of your favorite downtown spots to…

Feel inspired?  

BCR: BonBon! It’s a super cute Swedish candy store that brings out my childhood imagination every time I visit.

Take a client for dinner?

BCR: Café Clover, mainly because they serve Kin Euphorics, which I appreciate a lot as I recently stopped drinking alcohol.

Find a moment of stillness in the city’s perpetual flow?  

BCR: Chillhouse. I love going there for a massage, nail art or just a matcha latte to take a break.

Pick up something healthy for lunch?

BCR: Sweetgreen is my go-to for a healthy lunch and Maman for an afternoon hot chocolate.

Celebrate a special occasion?

BCR: Cafe Select has this quirky room that is used for hosting intimate parties. We hosted our bybabba holiday dinner there! It’s very New York and you have to enter the room by walking through the restaurant kitchen which is kind of fun.

Shop for an event-worthy outfit?    

BCR: What Goes Around Comes Around. I get endless inspiration by shopping its incredible vintage curation; each piece feels so uniquely special.

 

 

You May Also Like

Dimes Deli Dimes Restaurant Cookbook Chinatown Restaurant Alissa Wagner Recipe Spring Cooking

Dimes Times: Emotional Eating

food & drink
stories
Our favorite Chinatown restaurant released a cookbook! Chef-owner Alissa Wagner gives us the lowdown and shares a spring recipe.
Ellen von Unwerth Janelle Fishman Interview Devotion! 30 years of photographing women Fotografiska Kate Moss Gisele Bündchen Naomi Campbell

Ellen von Unwerth in Conversation with Janelle Fishman

art & design
stories
Two decades on from their first meeting on set for The Face Magazine, the photographer and model talk about pushing boundaries and von Unwerth’s retrospective at Fotografiska.
Talking NY Moments With Natasha Lyonne

Talking NY Moments With Natasha Lyonne

art & design
bars & nightlife
film
food & drink
music
stories
The native New Yorker reflects on the making of "Russian Doll," her close-knit friendship with Chloë Sevigny, and the New York moment she’ll never forget.
Nancy Stark Raouls Tarot Reader Psychic New York

Psychic Nancy Stark on Downtown Past & Future

art & design
stories
Raoul’s in-house psychic invites us into her Chelsea home and shares some of her favorite memories—as well as a few projections.
Samantha Urbani Interview GrandLife Leather Jacket Guide New York City Jakett Pop-up

Leather Weather: Samantha Urbani's Hit List

art & design
stories
Find the leather jacket of your dreams thanks to this definitive guide courtesy of our favorite leather-donning artist and musician.
Paige Powell Photographer Interview Gucci Andy Warhol Jean-Michel Basquiat

Paige Powell on documenting ’80s New York

art & design
stories
The photographer reflects on everything from working with Warhol to dating Basquiat and shares the stories behind her iconic images.
24 Hours in NYC with Jourdan Dunn

24 Hours in NYC with Jourdan Dunn

food & drink
stories
The model, diversity activist and philanthropist shares her New York go-tos while in town.
Cindy Hulej Guitars Carmine Street Guitars New York

Sound & Vision: An Interview with Cindy Hulej

music
stories
We talk with the visionary (and Bob Dylan-approved) luthier who makes guitars out of reclaimed wood from legendary NYC buildings like the Chelsea Hotel. 
Best Rate Promise
Soho Grand Hotel

310 West Broadway
New York, NY 10013

(212) 965-3000
The Roxy Hotel Tribeca

2 6th Avenue
New York, NY 10013

212.519.6600