News Releases

Jul 31, 2006

Nine Renowned Design Firms Unveil the Ultimate Dream Home at The Merchandise Mart

CHICAGO (July 31, 2006) – From the moment you walk through the front door into Nate Berkus’ stunning foyer, admire Eva Quateman’s faux python walls in the Library, or lounge in Marshall Erb’s comfy yet luxurious Living Room, you realize this is a home where dreams come true. Nine of the Chicago-area’s most acclaimed interior designers will join together this one time to create the ultimate dream home this fall. Come September 22, the public can visit this perfect home, DreamHome™, The Design House at the world famous Merchandise Mart, to see design at its finest and be inspired to make their own design dreams a reality.

A collaboration between Traditional Home magazine and Merchandise Mart Properties, Inc., DreamHome will feature nine rooms, each designed with a traditional flair – sometimes with a twist – by a celebrated designer using only the luxury resources available at the acclaimed Merchandise Mart Design Center.

“DreamHome is an amazing opportunity to bring to life the pages of Traditional Home and the resources of The Merchandise Mart for the public to experience through the visions of these distinguished designers,” said Ann Maine, editor-in-chief of Traditional Home. “Everyone is eager to see the masterpiece they unveil – that is sure to be an inspiration to us all.”

DreamHome’s nine rooms and the high-profile design team include:
Nate Berkus, design expert and founder of Nate Berkus Associates, will use his keen sense of design to create a striking Foyer.
Athelie Derse of Athelie Derse Inc. will bring her admiration for classic interiors and love of Chicago architecture to design the Bath.
Marshall Erb of Marshall Morgan Erb Design, Inc. will use his attention to detail and architectural background to create a unique and comfortable Living Room.
Douglas Hoerr of Douglas Hoerr Landscape Architecture will use his multi-dimensional thinking and innovative horticulture experiences to develop a Courtyard that grows richer season after season.
David Kaufman and Tom Segal of Kaufman Segal Design will bring together their unique mix of traditional, contemporary and expressive styles to create the Kitchen.
Kara Mann of Kara Mann Design will design the Bedroom implementing her design philosophy that home décor should include lifestyle elements, clean balance and personal aesthetic.
Eva Quateman, recognized as a ‘cool traditionalist’ and founder of Eva Quateman Interiors Ltd., will create a timeless Library.
Tom Stringer of Tom Stringer Inc. will design the Dining Room using his sharp eye and thoughtfulness that have helped him secure long-lasting client relationships.
Heather G. Wells and Bruce Fox of Heather G. Wells Ltd. will apply their sophisticated and creative vision that integrates contemporary minimalism and classic design into the DreamHome Family Room.

“Interior design professionals have an astonishing ability to take individual pieces and combine them to create comfortable, stylish living spaces that fulfill their clients’ dreams,” said John H. Brennen III, executive vice president, MMPI. “We are elated to have such a strong DreamHome design team, including world-famous Nate Berkus and rising star Kara Mann. DreamHome is the only chance to see the work of all of these skilled designers in one place as they bring the wide assortment of high-end home furnishings available in The Merchandise Mart Design Center to life.”

Traditional Home and The Merchandise Mart are proud to partner with The University of Chicago Cancer Research Foundation Women’s Board to host DreamHome’s preview gala on September 21, the evening before it opens to the public. The Board raises funds for cancer biology research to bring new scientists to the University of Chicago and to support the Ben May Institute for Cancer Research.

DreamHome will be open to the public from September 22 – December 22, weekdays 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Additionally, homeowners will have a chance to experience design at its best when Traditional Home brings its editors and DreamHome designers together to “Discover Design,” an interactive day at DreamHome on Saturday, October 7 from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

For more information about this year’s DreamHome, including group tours and event opportunities, visit or call 800.677.MART (6728).

Traditional Home (, an upscale design and decorating publication targeting affluent readers that combines classic taste and modern style, has been the best-selling shelter magazine at newsstands for nine consecutive years. Launched in 1989, the magazine is the largest upscale shelter magazine in the country, has a circulation of 950,000 and is published eight times a year.

The Merchandise Mart Design Center, located in Chicago’s historic Merchandise Mart, is home to four floors constitution the world’s first and largest design center. As a leader in the $65 billion residential furnishings market, The Merchandise Mart Design Center offers the largest presentation of high-end, couture, home furnishings worldwide, all under one roof. Encompassing 700,000 square feet, boasting 130 showrooms and featuring more than 2,000 product lines, it is the design professional’s ultimate resource for luxury furniture, fabrics, floor coverings, wall coverings, lighting, antiques, and much more.

Merchandise Mart Properties, Inc. is a trade show and property management firm, specializing in managing buildings devoted to wholesale showrooms and commercial office space. MMPI produces more than 300 trade shows, market events and conferences each year.

MMPI manages The Merchandise Mart and 350 West Mart Center in Chicago; Market Square, the Suites at Market Square, Hamilton Market, Plaza Suites, Furniture Plaza and the National Furniture Mart in High Point, N.C.; the Architects & Designers Building and 7 W New York in New York; the Boston Design Center in Boston; the L.A. Mart in Los Angeles; and the Washington Design Center and Federal Center Southwest in Washington D.C.

Vornado Realty Trust, owners of MMPI, based in New York City, is a fully integrated equity real estate investment trust. Vornado’s common shares are listed on the New York Stock Exchange and are traded under the symbol VNO.

Sponsors of DreamHome include: University of Chicago Cancer Research Foundation Women’s Board, Bear Construction Company, Chicago Social, Commercial Light Company, ICI Paints, Pioneer Press Publications, Rex Electric, Inc. & Technologies, Triangle Decorating, Thorne Associates, Trainor Glass Company and WE O'Neil Construction Co.