MKDA Interview

Interview with the corporate interior design firm

Jeffrey Kleinberg

Established in 1959, MKDA is one of the nation’s most enduring family-owned space planning, interiors and branding firms. MKDA specializes in the workplace, but offers the full scope of integrated interior design services for practice areas that range far and wide.

Principals Michael and Jeffrey Kleinberg lead the firm and its team of professionals, all with proven track records of successful client collaboration and expert knowledge in local markets, current trends and research. MKDA remains ranked by Interior Design magazine as a Top 100 Interior Design Giant and has been named by Interior Design magazine as a 2013 Best of the Year Honoree.


What is MKDA’s vision?

JEFFREY KLEINBERG: When MKDA was founded, its vision was to deliver interiors that married European sophistication with American utility, an idea that stemmed from our founder’s emigration from design-rich Vienna to pragmatic Brooklyn, NY. We continue to focus on achieving the critical balance between form and function in all of our interiors. In order to get to that point, we first need to gain a thorough understanding of our client’s brand and business goals. Once we do, we apply our experience and the latest re¬search to achieve high-performance, visually strong environments that connect and engage with the individuals that utilize the space.

Why did MKDA decide to open an office in Miami?

JEFFREY KLEINBERG: We had been coming to Miami for years for both business and pleasure, and had been attracted to the market for its position as a leading international business center. At the time of our opening, we felt there was room in the market for a firm like ours and that we could capitalize on growth in the commercial office market sector. By opening the office, we are now equipped to provide our existing New York clientele, many of which have assets in Miami, with the same level and quality of service, but at the local level through a strong team with deep regional experience. We remain positive on Miami’s outlook and look forward to continued growth.


Which elements of New York office design can be applied to the Miami market?

MICHAEL KLEINBERG: Our New York and Miami clients are generally looking for the same elements of design. The workplace must first project a lively and engaging environment, which energizes individuals and fosters company culture. Open layouts with various levels of collaborative spaces that help develop ideas and move them forward are also paramount. To balance the noise and transparency of an open office plan, we must provide private space, such as phone booths or upholstered privacy pods. On the other end of the spectrum are large multipurpose rooms that can be used for town hall meetings, large lunches, training or activities that promote fun. Bringing nature indoors is also critical for most firms today.

What stood out and led you to become a part of the Ofizzina project?

MICHAEL KLEINBERG: Ofizzina, which gives businesses the unique opportunity to own premium office condos with superior design and amenities in one of Miami’s most desirable neighborhoods, stood out as a terrific opportunity for two main reasons. First, it allowed MKDA to collaborate with a pioneering real estate and development firm doing groundbreaking work in South Florida. Second, it allowed MKDA to participate in one of the most innovative developments under construction in Miami, while simultaneously contributing to the growth of Miami’s international business community, a group that typically prefers office condos to traditional office leasing. We are proud to be a part of this landmark project.