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How Interiors Affect Restaurants and Bars

Photo: tom balabaud/ Pexels
Reading Time: 3 minutes

At the moment, we’ve all been advised not to pack into restaurants and bars. As the coronavirus continues to spread, it will still be a while before we get back to our old way of living. Even then, it may be even longer before we feel comfortable to be in a crowd. For restaurant and bar owners who are already struggling, this does mean that ambiance is going to be hard to create. It is crucial to understand how interiors affect restaurants and bars since the design is part of the restaurant marketing and branding strategy. The interiors of restaurants are how customers perceive the concept and if worthy of eating.

It’s a strange human instinct that makes us feel more at ease when others are eating and drinking around us. Whatever the reason for it, it is something all owners of such establishments have to replace in some way.

The good news is that this can be done with something as simple as changing the interiors.

Here are some ways interior design can be used to improve patron experience in a relatively empty restaurant or bar.


Paint Makes Space

The most basic interior design technique on how interiors affect restaurants and bars is to choose a specific paint job carefully. In the past, many restaurant owners have used white or light-colored walls to make space feel bigger. Some have opted for mirrors to make it look like the restaurant is double the size.

Right now, you are better off with the opposite. The smaller space appears, the less empty it will feel. Dark colors or busy patterns are useful for this purpose. If you don’t want to spend a lot of money on significantly changing your establishment just for COVID-19, wallpapers can be a great temporary choice.


Choosing the Right Furniture

If you run an establishment with a rigid theme, there is only so much leeway you have when it comes to furniture. However, if you have a more flexible interior design theme, choosing the right restaurant furniture can make a big difference.

For example, grand antique-style chairs may be perfect for your ambiance during standard years. But now, if you are allowing limited patrons in for a relatively quick dining experience, these chairs will only make what is missing that much clearer.

At the moment, people are looking for comfort. The world is a frightening place right now. For this reason, choosing comfort over the theme in 2020 is a good rule of thumb. People should be able to come in and relax, temporarily free from the problems going on outside.


Lighting Changes Everything

One of the most fundamental ways of creating a certain ambiance in a restaurant or bar is by using particular lighting. Bars in which you expect to spend a fun night drinking are generally dimly lit, as this creates the right mood. Romantic restaurants use dim lighting for another reason altogether.

In 2020, good lighting is probably more useful for a comfortable and safe ambiance. Bright rooms just feel more reliable, as nothing unexpected can happen. On the other hand, if you do not want the emptiness to be super evident, dim lighting can serve its purpose too.

We are facing a whole new world, and there are no right answers. Your interior design choices right now will need to come with a pinch of trial-and-error. Find what works for you and your clientele.

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Candice Williamson

Written by Candice Williamson

Candice is a lifestyle and wellness writer at Dine Magazine. She lives with her Husky in L.A. and hopes to one day adopt as many dogs as possible. Being originally from NYC her obsession with Sex and the City grew when she first set eyes on her mother's high heels. She knows every episode word for word.

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