ohio city-based urban orchid opens second location in renovated little italy church

Urban Orchid, a floral boutique that opened in Ohio City in 2011, recently celebrated the opening of a second location at 2062 Murray Hill Road in Little Italy. The new shop is located inside an elegant, historic church converted to retail space. With business booming, the owners needed an east side workspace for arrangements and deliveries on the other side of town. Larger arrangements for weddings and other events are still being done in Ohio City.

"We wanted to keep it in the city, but we wanted to be in another neighborhood with a similar feel to Ohio City," says Jeffrey Zelmer, who owns Urban Orchid with Brandon Seitler, a floral designer. "We thought Little Italy was a good opportunity."

Zelmer describes the new space as possessing "amazing" architecture; it offers soaring ceilings, hardwood floors and many other historic features. The owners worked with local contractors John Paul Costello and Alex Loos to custom-build furnishings and work stations using reclaimed materials. "We tried to enhance the architecture of the space, and not mask it off," says Zelmer of the build-out.

The new location boasts a choir loft that allows visitors to get a bird's eye view of the space. Zelmer and Seitler are considering hosting pop-up shops there.

The company already has 75 weddings booked for this year and additional staff has been brought on to keep up with demand. "Brandon’s design capabilities and floral style are exceptional and people really respond to it," says Zelmer. "The word of mouth spead like wildfire. We also carry a really interesting line of locally made merchandise that can’t be found in other places. People are attuned to wanting to shop local, and we are a local business that carries local artists."

Read more articles by Lee Chilcote.

Lee Chilcote is founder and editor of The Land. He is the author of the poetry chapbooks The Shape of Home and How to Live in Ruins. His writing has been published by Vanity Fair, Next City, Belt and many literary journals as well as in The Cleveland Neighborhood Guidebook, The Cleveland Anthology and A Race Anthology: Dispatches and Artifacts from a Segregated City. He is a founder and former executive director of Literary Cleveland. He lives in the Detroit Shoreway neighborhood of Cleveland with his family.
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