Alison Nelson likes to experiment with chocolate, even down to the wrappers. Chocolate Bar, her chain of sweets shops that launched in 2002, serves truffles, pastries, chocolate drinks, and more than 40 types of chocolate bars, some of them decorated by local artists. The company, which saw sales reach $3 million last year, has 35 employees and three stores in New York and New Jersey. Nelson recently partnered with a Dubai-based company to open 30 more stores in the Middle East.

Corbusier chaise

"This chaise is functional and beautiful. In the evening, I like to lounge here and read through my books, newspapers, and magazines."


Coffee From Joe

"It takes two cups to get me going in the morning and one to make it through the evening. The roast has some chocolate tones. It's deep and rich."

$2.30 for a large cup,

Antique radio

"It's a vintage General Electric from the '40s, made of solid cherry. We got it at Alan's Alley Video, an independent video rental place. The owner also sells antiques. He doesn't mark things up outrageously like everyone else in the city."

What I Covet

A villa on St. Bart's

"When you own a business and have two children, you don't get a lot of time to vacation. We spent a Thanksgiving in St. Bart's, and it was so relaxing. I'd like a home there that friends could visit."

$3 million and up,