What is the most important features of restaurant or bar design and how do they create it? A professional restaurant owner will be the first to tell you that the atmosphere is probably at least half of the reason people are drawn to a certain place to eat.
Atmosphere is very key for a good restaurant
“Atmosphere – it’s of the utmost importance. It’s very key. The lighting has to be right. And table settings have to as well. It’s about trying to space tables out nicely so you have that atmosphere no matter how busy you are,” says Scott Andrews, operations manager at hotel and restaurant Gidleigh Park.
Lighting is the most important feature of restaurant design
A restaurant’s atmosphere sets the stage. It’s about more than just a dining room away from home. Food takes the spotlight as guests become its audience. Factors such as music, lighting, artwork and spacing combine to create comfort, intimacy and even romance. But One of the most important features of restaurant design is lighting. Lighting in your restaurant can add to the ambiance of your dining room or ruin the experience completely for your customer.
How restaurant lighting impacts your establishment's mood
Different lighting levels can be used in order to set the mood of your restaurant or bar. This means that customers can either be drawn into your establishment or put off by it simply because of your lighting choices.
About low lighting
Low lighting can be relaxed and romantic, and it encourages customers to stay longer. Think of a candlelit dinner at a formal restaurant. These settings typically have overhead fixtures with dimmers and lots of accent lighting.
“We don’t want the lights to be too bright for the customer. We just want the customer to feel relaxed and enjoy their meal. When it’s too bright it’s not enjoyable.”
The low lighting creates more intimacy, as sections of brighter light, like those over dining tables or your bar area, allow customers to feel like they are more isolated from the other guests in the room.
Note that it is important, even in environments with low lighting, to include enough ambient lighting to perform basic tasks easily and safely.
Artwork also sets the mood and gives the interest
Artwork also plays a part. It sets the mood to portray to your guests. It also gives them a point of interest. There’s nothing worse than staring at a bare wall. You do need a focal point in any room but nothing too overpowering.
Staff's service does matter
Tailoring to a customer’s needs reverts to the same principle of keeping things natural. Service is not forced and neither is a vibrant atmosphere. These restaurants strive to make the dining experience as organic as possible. They enjoy the best atmosphere because they understand ambiance is merely harnessed.
Atmosphere comes from guests
Whether your establishment is elegant, fun, whimsical, or romantic, decorating your restaurant with several different types of lights will not only draw in customers, but will get them talking to their friends and keep them coming back time and again just for the atmosphere (assuming your food is good too!).
"Atmosphere comes from guests, their conversations, the clinking of glasses and cutlery. It’s a very relaxed environment. Our guests have always preferred not to have music. We’ve had a lot of comments on the positives."