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Inspired by the architecture around them in OTR, a dynamic duo is setting out to bring a unique showroom experience to Cincinnati. Keep reading for all the designer details.

Design Lab in OTR features a showroom of local and international designers as well as local art from nearby galleries.
Design Lab in OTR features a showroom of local and international designers as well as local art from nearby galleries.

Barbara Neyer and Renan Menninger believe that design is key to a healthy, vibrant community. That’s why this dynamic duo launched Design Lab, a new furniture, lighting, and accessories showroom in Over-the-Rhine.

“Design is all around us – whether it’s the Italianate architecture in Over-the-Rhine, or the the thoughtfully-planned environment in and around Washington Park, design is central in how we all experience a city,” says Menninger.

Neyer and Menninger were inspired to launch Design Lab as they became more determined to create a design-driven environment that was rooted in hospitality, collaboration, and exploration.

“We also wanted to create a place where anyone can feel welcome to walk in and relax, have a drink, and experience the love we have for the objects that inspire us,” says Menninger.

Over at Design Lab, Neyer serves as the Owner as well as the Director of Contract/A&D Sales while Menninger is the Owner and Director of Design. Together, the two carefully curate beautiful collections of mindfully designed and crafted objects.

“Every piece has a rich and deep story, from the designers first conceptual sketches to the piece’s final inspection in the factory; no detail is left to chance,” says Neyer.

In addition to the showroom and retail shop, Design Lab also offers residential and commercial design services that incorporate original pieces from their partners including Moroso, Moooi, Bocci, Tom Dixon, Ligne Roset, and others.

The uniqueness in Design Lab lays within the furniture, accessories, and lighting lines they represent and offer to guests.

“On the surface, our showroom may appear to simply be a beautiful space filled with beautiful objects,” says Neyer. “In reality, however, the craft behind the business lies in relationships – with vendors, with guests, and with each other.”

Some of the brands found at Design Lab can be found on the international design scene and are very selective about whom they choose to work with. “They are also brands that respectively honor the craft of creating one-of-a-kind pieces that you won’t be able to find just anywhere,” Neyer adds.

Design Lab is also incorporating other local businesses’ into their own as a way to engage with the public in a variety of ways.

“Our showroom floor represents a true lifestyle environment as we hope to use our space for private events and social engagement as well,” says Neyer. “A goal of ours is to continue incorporating artists from local and international scenes to contribute to our space – making Design Lab a truly dynamic, spatial dialogue.”

The art collection at Design Lab currently holds pieces from local galleries including Miller Gallery and Carl Solway Gallery, and Neyer says they plan on showcasing artwork from new collaborations in the future.

Neyer says that you can expect to see the Design Lab website up very soon, where you’ll be able to find information on the lines they carry as well as some of the projects they’ve worked on in the past. “We welcome anyone to stop into our showroom Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

You can visit Design Lab at 1401 Elm Street in Cincinnati or call them at 513-620-7299.