Carrying on the Tradition

Zeitlin Optik is synonymous with Marc Zeitlin who founded it twenty-five years ago, with the ambitious goal that he would provide unstinting service and unique merchandise of the highest quality. Marc wanted his clients to love their glasses and keep coming back for more of his expert recommendations, precision lab work and his great sense of humor. At times, the shop had the intimacy of a hangout, where his clients and frame reps came to catch up.

Rachel with Dad in the early days

Rachel with Dad in the early days

Marc grew up working in his family’s beachfront restaurant in the Rockaways. As a boy he manned a vast hot dog grill each summer, serving thousands of beach-goers. In the evenings, he soaked up the color at his father and uncle’s bar. Both experiences shaped his love of serving the public in a diverse setting like New York City.

 Before he went on his own, Marc honed his expertise working for a number of exclusive optical boutiques, including Kimbe Optic 

and Joe Name. He gained an appreciation for the beautiful design and craftsmanship as well as the high style and pure fun of some of the European and Japanese frame lines. At Kimbe he viewed his tenure as an apprenticeship in exacting lab techniques, frame fabrication, and the art of customer service.

When Marc was diagnosed in 2007 with advanced lung cancer he fought ferociously for five years, always believing that he would beat it. He said that having to show up for his family and his business kept him going through the dark moments. He was constantly gratified by the support lavished on him by his clientele.

A New Chapter

 Rachel Zeitlin joined the business at this time, determined to learn everything she could from her Dad. Her fondest memories are of working and learning with him in the shop. 

Rachel and Marc Zeitlin, 2012

Rachel and Marc Zeitlin, 2012

We carry on the culture Marc established, with relationships and expertise with our clients, and a sense of  humor.

Click here to read Living a Life in Sight, a profile of Marc, in 20/20 magazine.