Finding the right design for your new restaurant project is an important question that we get asked about. What should be the color combination? How can one create a pleasing atmosphere to maximise footfall? What facilities can be accomodated? How does one decide on lighting and aura? Here’s the answer to some of your queries:-

1) Music

Every establishment nowadays needs some noise to define it’s aura. Soothing music is recommended for fine dining establishments and a relatively louder music for dance and pub forms of establishments. Care needs to be taken that music is not so loud that it becomes almost impossible to have a conversation.

2) Table Placement

Tables should be placed in such a manner that it provides for easy movement for the staff and customers. Care should be taken that tables with their chairs should not be so close that it makes your customers uncomfortable to freely move in their sitting position.

tables layout in a restaurant
  Well Defined Table Layout

3) Lighting

Lighting in a restaurant largely depends upon target areas. A bar area can be dimly lit while a centre point should be adequately visibly. When having separate displays for wine and food – they need to be arranged in a moderately lit light so that while the wine labels are clearly visible, it’s attractiveness is not over-pushed.

Lighting should not be too bright so as to hurt the eyes. Chandeliers can be specially designed for a setting – an example can be chandeliers in colored inverted glasses can match the desired tone of the place. An upscale restaurent can have table areas dimly lit while a quick service restaurant is generally more prominently lit.

wine display
  A Lighted Wine Display

4) Corner Stone Space

A decorative wall or a decoration piece that can align with your restaurant design for example a vintage car cut out can be a cornerstone place – people love to get clicked at cornerstone places.

vintage red car in a restaurant
  Centre Piece Decoration of a Car

5) Candles

Single Candles have become outdated lately but stylish colourful candles covered under glass enclosures still light the mood.

6) Your Audience

Targeted restaurant designs are helpful when you are sure of your clientele for example for younger audience you can use some bright colours and modern graffiti with loud statements. For mature clientele a subtle color combination with darker colors and quiet atmosphere that facilitates better conversation is far more ideal.

7) Outer Appearance

Outer Appearance should be attractive. A showcase area that is visible through the glass is recommended for wider open front areas and a glass panel on the door is recommended for narrow areas.

8) Furniture

Is your furniture adequately spaced with enough space between tables and between chairs? Is your furniture too trendy for your target audience? For example a simple wooden bench placed outside may not sit too well for audiences that maybe looking for a cosy atmosphere while it may seem trendy to younger clientele. A quick service restaurant if faced with lesser space can do well with lesser seating than a restaurant whose menu takes times to prepare.

9) Artwork

Go for artwork , wallpaper to get that modern and classic combination.

10) Custom Music for Interactive Atmosphere

How about giving your customers a say in the music? – try a jukebox. This creates a lively and interactive atmosphere between the clientele across tables and is a natural ice breaker which makes conversations last longer and orders keep piling up!

11) Stage

A small stage area for live music can add a different appeal to your place. You have the option to choose a different musical aura for special days – for example having a ghazal night or hosting a birthday party.

12) Dancing

A dance area to accompany the music if you are going for a bar disco combination.

13) Private Dining

You can create separate private dining rooms for your restaurant and charge a premium for it. This gives your customers a quiet feel without the rush of the surrounding – many important work meetings are held like this.

glass enclosure dining room
  A Glass Enclosure Private Dining Room

14) Dress Code and closet

Would you like your restaurant to have a dress code? Not just your staff but even your customers can have a dress code – for example one can require a formal dress code where men are required to wear blazers – just keep an array for extra blazers – all sizes ready to serve a customer without one. For this your restaurant would need to have a closet area with an attendant to keep track of your customers’ clothes and help them out.

15) Green is healthy

Having potted plants really elevates the soothing aura of a restaurant while it also provides a sense of comfort. You shall need to keep the plants fresh when not going for artificial greenery.

potted plants on restaurant table
  Potted Plants on Tables

16) Buffet and moving table

How about creating a moving table where dishes in bowls move freely for anyone to pick up their favourite? – A novel concept for all your can eat. A buffet area generally takes up a larger space – this can be overcome by serving small portions on a freely moving or mechanical moving table section.

17) Bar

When faced with less space, a single tall bar counter with non-revolving tall stools is recommended. A bar counter can also be a moving bar counter where you take the moving bar trolley to customers to serve at their table. You can also offer a separate tasting room and otherwise can have tasting events scheduled for select clientele.

Have you ever noticed the rod just ahead of your stool bottom and underneath the bar counter – A standing bar counter ( bar counter without stools ) with a wide diameter rod below as foot rest is ideal for a fast moving bar experience when faced with even lesser space. A bar can even provide your guests for a place to wait while their table becomes available or gets ready.

18) A Centre Point

For example a pizzeria with a custom made large wood fire oven reaching beyond the top to the outside open will serve as an attractive centre point around which your entire seating arrangement can be placed.

19) Custom Menu

Can you offer custom menu ? Let guests choose custom made dishes on demand.

20) Define areas with cuisines

Have separate areas dedicated to separate cuisines – larger spaces can be divided and sectioned into different cusine areas that serve an entirely different menu. An example would be a food court concept restaurant with a bakery on one end, Chinese menu on the other and an Indian buffet towards the side. One can also have different divisions based upon diferent floors or outside and inside seating.

20) Concept Restaurant

Moving-floor restaurant or a whole restaurant that is designed like a concept – for example a restaurant with revolving floor, another example would be a restaurant that is made like a train and each passenger has to climb onto the train/restaurant and to his birth/seat to be served. How about trying a diner concept – red slide in booths with an american diner cuisine of pancakes and the like.

red diner booth
  American Diner Concept

21) Tech Savvy

One can offer a small charging point area for phones and tablets. Such charging areas can be intelligently placed below a table and in between a lengthy straight or curved sofa seating.

22) Color combination

A great combination of restaurant colors is helpful not just in designing a mood for the restaurant but also to effect the psychological aura of the place. A sombre color combination of dark colors like brown and black with wide berth seating helps to create a quiet elegant atmosphere where guests at every table feel just enough separate from the rest of the crowd while still enjoying a distant connect to them.

23) Cameras

For security purposes one may prefer to have cameras in their restaurant or pub but care should be taken so that such cameras are delicately placed and not in your face. Camera should be placed at higher ground and possibly above head area in the ceiling as opposed to side walls.

24) Unkept look

The latest trend of restaurant decor is the untidy look in which the walls are not properly furnished – infact they are not even painted. In such a look, the walls have the cemented look and the ceilings have colored (normally black or steel) rods/ pipes going throughout the restaurent in a well planned but criss-cross layout. These rods normally hide your electrical wiring and also connect to air-conditioners. The plus point of such a look is that maintenance cost does not remain an issue because anything untidy blends into the already untidy look of the place.

unkept wall
  Unkept Cemented Wall

25) Name and logo

Restaurant name and logo should be clearly visible from the exterior in an eye catching fashion. Red colored signs or neon lighting is recommended in such a scenario.

neon sign of bar
  Neon Sign

26) Restaurant Soul

What is the soul of your restaurant? Defining the restaurant soul isn’t that different from understanding what your clientele is looking for – A well defined soul is a combination of all the above factors. To design a restaurant –

  1. Think about your cuisine – What is your plus point and how is it different from others. If for example your mastery is in baking, then go for a bakery because no matter the design, the food is what would keep your customers coming back for more.
  2. Hire a designer – A great deal of work is needed in designing and delivering a restaurant. Seeking professional help is recommended.
  3. Your Vision – Tell your designer your vision – be open and discuss it out.
  4. Design Goals – A good discussion would involve what are your design goals – your overall layout idea, your furniture outlook, your desired lighting effects, your kitchen space effectiveness, your dress color codes, your menu budget and ambience ambitions.

Here’s our blog on the costs involved in Opening a Restaurant

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