The Hermitage Design Center turns off the lights, but does not pull the plug

Hermitage carries a wide range of major lighting brands.

The Hermitage Design Center, Nashville’s iconic lighting showroom that has been in business for 78 years, sold its flagship property and will move to an online-only model.

The city’s buoyant real estate market prompted the decision, according to owner Jack Fleischer.

“With the development of the city center, we had the opportunity to realize significant benefits from the sale of our property,” he said in a statement. “We are looking at our retail business to move to a fully online model.”

The store has clearance prices on everything and will sell to “the bare walls,” he said.

The fourth-generation family-owned lighting business started as an appliance distribution company, but later grew to include lighting, plumbing and home accessories. It now serves single-family home builders, custom bathroom and kitchen installers and retail customers through lighting providers such as Generation Lighting, Hinckley and Savoy House. The company was nominated for an ARTS award next January.

COVID has changed the way the company operates, Rachel Fleischer, senior purchasing agent and daughter of Jack Fleischer, told Home Accents Today in August. When forced to temporarily close, the company had a chance to assess who they are and how customers buy them – many of them browse online and then walk into the store knowing what they want. The Hermitage is known for its “outrageous customer service,” she said.

“We feel this is the right time and the right approach to help benefit our valued customers,” said Jack Fleischer. “The pandemic has shown us that we can continue to grow without a significant presence in the showroom. It has been an incredible journey. We appreciate all the interactions and relationships along the way.”

In the future, retail customers can work through their respective contractors or purchase directly online at The Hermitage Design Center will continue its professional model with trade-only appointments operating as normal. Builders, designers, architects, developers and national account clients will continue to have commercial representatives who will work directly with them.

“We want to thank our Mid Tennessee and Southern Kentucky retail customers for all their support throughout our 78 years of business in Nashville,” said Fleischer.

Hermitage offices and operations will move to 3640 Trousdale Dr., Nashville, TN 37204.

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