The three basic ingredients of a successful restaurant are great food, fast, friendly service, and nice ambiance.
No? All right, let’s dig into this a bit more. You know your product and you know how to deliver it, but what about creating an atmosphere people will want to return to? Understanding ambiance is key to keeping your restaurant in business.
What is Ambiance?
This is not as easy to define as you might think. The word is often used in conjunction with a cultural adjective, e.g. “Italian” or “southern.” Some recognizable aspects of a culture are music, artwork, and of course the smells coming out of the kitchen. But there is more to ambiance than culture. It’s about the way guests feel when they are in your restaurant, which is affected by factors you often don’t think about.
What Ambiance Do You Want to Achieve?
It’s important to think about this thoroughly before you open up for business or consider a redesign. Is your restaurant geared toward families with young kids or is it a romantic spot perfect for date night? Do you want people to feel comfortable being loud and having fun or do you want people to be able to have serious discussion? You have to know what your goal is to achieve it.
How Does Design Affect Ambiance?
Good design is about supporting ambiance; bad design disrupts it. Now that you know what you hope to achieve through music, artwork and other elements immediately perceived by the five senses, we can create a space that is conducive to showcasing those elements without distracting from them.
Logistics = making sure guest traffic is unencumbered from the parking lot to the dining room.
Table Placement = giving your guests the desired amount of breathing room and privacy.
Lighting = creating the desired mood with the use of both natural and artificial light.
Bathrooms = planning for volume while maintaining continuity with dining room décor.
Wait Staff = providing spaces to prepare trays, watch the dining room and take breaks without disturbing guests.
Great food and service are a must, but if your guests are in any way uncomfortable in their environment, that’s what they’ll remember. Achieving great ambiance – an environment people will want to return to – begins with a vision of how you want your guests to feel and ends with executing a design that facilitates that vision.
That’s just what we’re here to help you do.