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There’s an ongoing debate in the hospitality industry; what’s more important, the interior design or the customer service? Inevitably, after any disastrous customer service experience, you may be inclined to say service…..but in fact often the design of the space can be the catalyst for the frustrations that can lead to poor service. So with well thought out design you can focus on both these elements. 

There are often a few stumbling blocks in the fit out of your restaurant, unnoticeable at first, that may hinder you in the future. Fortunately we are here to guide you in making the right interior design & fit out decisions to ensure a smooth ride and a successful outlook for your restaurant.

Don’t Forget your BOH.

A key mistake often made in restaurant interior design is neglecting the Back of House areas. Time spent working on the Front of House designs often takes away from time considering and budgeting for the back of house area. This can lead to chaos in the long run. Think about whether the balance of FOH to BOH is appropriate for the number of covers you have and whether you have capacity to increase your kitchen size and accommodate more space for food prep and staff.  Well considered kitchens, staff rooms, offices and storage spaces will aid your team in running the restaurant more efficiently. 

Give yourself the space you need

It’s important when creating the interior design of your restaurant that you consider the functionality as much as the aesthetics. Detailed space planning is the key to ensuring that the floor plan of the restaurant is functional and easy for staff and customers to navigate. This links back to the previous discussion about the back of house; it can often be tempting to pack in as many covers as possible, but this ultimately leads to a restaurant being too busy, understaffed and over-capacity. It will impact the flow of the space creating congestion problems for staff and customers moving about the space. A well planned layout reduces the risk of these issues, it makes the restaurant more usable, it also has the potential to increase the spend per head as customers will enjoy a relaxed, pleasant space for a longer period of time. 

Happier employee makes happier customer 

Wellbeing is a huge conversation right now. Most people are familiar with the idea of incorporating wellness incentives into their business. In hospitality this is often looked at from a consumer perspective, forgetting that staff wellbeing is equally as important within your company. A happy team will help you to run your restaurant better. Within the fit out of your restaurant, if you have the capacity to create a staff breakout space for your team, this could be the perfect way to give your staff a serene environment to relax and reset part way through a busy shift. Remember, happy, calming staff have a hugely positive impact on your customers’ experience too. So what’s stopping you from improving your staff welfare? 

Technology needs to be your friend. 

In a world where our whole lives are surrounded by technology customers have now come to expect restaurants, and other establishments, to be well equipped with technology systems. This can be anything from efficient tills, card machines and apps to make the process of ordering and paying more streamline. There is a plethora of new technology out there that we have been reviewing here at 2G and is important that every establishment has been doing the same. 

It is also worth considering that technology is difficult for some people and old school methods should still be an option. Get to know your target market and understand whether various technology systems and additions are right for them and your stagg. 

Technology can also be incorporated when it comes to lighting systems. A simply calculated lighting system will create ease and flexibility when setting the scene within a restaurant. Systems can be set up to automatically alter your scenes, setting the appropriate ambience for the time of day or night. Most of the tech that is incorporated into hospitality spaces goes almost unnoticed, behind the scenes and seamlessly integrated into the running of an establishment, it is however, fundamental to stay up to date with the best advances in technology. 

Identifying and understanding where the pitfalls in the design are will aid the performance of your restaurant in the long run. Learning to tackle and design around these points will enhance the space making it totally user friendly for both your customers and staff. Win win! 

Looking e advice on how to create the most effective & inspiring restaurant? As experts in Interior Design and Fit out of Bars & Restaurants we can help.

Catherine Jones

Author Catherine Jones

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