The Michigan Design Center (MDC), located in the affluent Detroit suburb Oakland County, celebrates 35 years in business with a rich history and a bright future. Home to more than 30 national and locally owned showrooms, MDC services metro Detroit, the state of Michigan, as well as parts of Ohio, Indiana, and Ontario, Canada.
Founded by Marvin Danto and his son Jim, who previously had owned a chain of fine furniture stores in Michigan called Englander’s, MDC was the first to-the-trade center to open in the region. Marvin Danto passed away in early 2012, and Jim Danto continues on as President at MDC. It is the only major design center other than New York Design Center (NYDC) to be owned and operated by someone from the furniture/design industry.
Throughout this year, MDC celebrated its anniversary acknowledging it at many events and seminars. This week, MDC will cap off the year with a dinner party for staff and 24 designers as special guests.
“We recognize that our industry has evolved in many ways, but our showrooms continue to provide the best selection, service and expert advice to our community,” said Lauren Reinhard, marketing manager at MDC.
According to Reinhard, there is a growing demand for design professionals in the community. “We’ve heard from many of our designers that they are busier than they have been in years,” she said. “ We have interior designers and an architects who have located their office space right here in our building to be closer to the growing demand for such services in our region.”
The MDC produces and sponsors many educational community events for the showrooms and the design community. It hosts two large consumer events a year, and sponsors of events like Detroit Home Magazine’s Detroit Home Design Awards, DIFFA’s Dining by Design, design show houses and other projects.
MDC’s invitation-only Designer Directory program highlights (on its website) the area’s top design talent, and provides comprehensive portfolio space to those designers. Members are all selected based on their abilities and established working relationships with the showrooms. “We make a big effort to educate consumers about the value of hiring an interior designer,” said Reinhard.
MDC provides many diverse resources to designers who shop the building. “We offer a resource center with a variety of high-end residential and contract materials and services,” said Reinhard. “Our Mid-America Room is available for professional or social gatherings and an on-site café is available for dine-in and carry-out services.”
The center has published two issues of its magazine: Michigan Design Center @home, which is distributed to 45,000 annually. Click here to view the publication.