Meet Interior Designer Lisa Panitz
Lisa Panitz understands her clients’ desire for a scenery change.
Lisa Panitz emerged from a tightly-packed East Side subway station in New York City—her arms weighed down by work bags—and decided she’d had enough. She called her husband and simply uttered, “I can’t do this anymore.”
Panitz and her husband decided in early 2020 that they wanted to move to Columbus to get away from the constant buzz of East Coast life and be closer to their daughter, who is on the Ohio State University swim team. The couple moved into their New Albany home in October 2020, and a new challenge arose for Panitz: running her New York-based interior design business while gaining a foothold in Central Ohio.
Panitz has been reimagining New York homes for 25 years through Lisa Haas Panitz Interior Design. As a fifth-generation Manhattanite, she says she was intimidated by the prospect of starting from scratch in Ohio. Fortunately, she found a welcoming community that was eager for her involvement. Panitz insists that Central Ohio is quietly creative. There are artisans everywhere, and people excited to connect and collaborate.
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However, she hasn’t left her New York roots behind. She makes monthly trips back to her hometown to stay on top of the latest trends and newest materials. “The beauty of being there is I’m still in the pulse of things,” she says. “So I’m really bringing a lot here.”
Whether her clients are residents of the Big Apple or the Buckeye state, Panitz strives to provide them with a broad range of choices that will fit their personal style. “I do have my own aesthetic, but at the end of the day, I’m leaving that home,” she says. “And the house has to reflect the people that live there.”
What has changed about your business since moving to Ohio?
My ability to see, touch and feel a lot of materials and to have access to great products weekly has been a big change for me. I am still able to get my hands on great items but, it’s more about Zoom calls and monthly shopping in person.
What has stayed the same?
My methods and systems of designing have not changed. I am still approaching each job the same way I always have. Presenting clients with a lot of exciting options is why it works no matter where you live.
Whether it’s visually or functionally, what makes your interior design stand out?
My ability to combine function with beautiful materials is what I do best. Listening to clients’ needs and mixing authentic classics with modern pieces, rich textures and colors is something I have always done well. Every project is designed with functional ease and a clear lifestyle approach specific to each client.
Where do you see this new chapter in your career taking you? Any long-term goals?
I am hoping to grow my business here to be as successful as it has been in New York. To have great relationships with families here in Ohio and to help people to love their homes is always a goal. The desire to open a store here is [a goal I have]. To have all the products and items I love all in one place would be incredibly exciting.
What has been your favorite part of everyday life in Ohio?
There is a calm here that I did not have in New York. I love the walking paths, the amazing sunsets and sunrises, meeting the nicest people and OSU sports is why it’s a great place to live.
This story is from the February 2022 issue of Columbus Monthly.