Gabriella Mary Hoffmann was born in New York City, New York, to actors Anthony Herrera and Viva (née Janet Susan Mary Hoffmann), who was a Warhol superstar. She began acting in commercials at 4 to help pay the family bills. Gabys first film role was as young Maisy Russell in 1988s Uncle Buck (1989). Until the summer of 1993, Gaby had lived her entire life with her mother Viva and older sister, Alexandra Auder, at New Yorks notorious Chelsea Hotel. Gabys time at the hotel was the basis for a childrens book that Viva and friend Jane Lancellotti wrote titled Gaby at the Chelsea (a takeoff on the classic Eloise). Someone Like Me (1994) was hatched after one of the shows producers, Gail Berman, read a New York Times article about the Chelsea Hotel that mentioned a the book.