What to Consider when Designing a Restaurant

There are many things to consider when designing a restaurant. It’s not just about creating a pleasant place for people to enjoy food; it’s about designing somewhere appealing, appropriate and functional. It needs its own identity and must have something that will make customers want to return and it should also be a good place to work.


Without a theme there can be little significant design. Even if it the restaurant is to be very simple and functionality is the only concern that has to be a clearly identified theme so that the overall design can meet those specifications. Without an overall design to pull all of the elements together a restaurant will present as ill-considered and at worst not a very appealing place to eat.

If the restaurant is also to have a bar, this will also need careful consideration as it should compliment the overall design and theme of the restaurant. For example if the restaurant is in a Victorian setting and the design is one of Victorian-style elegance then placing an ultra-modern bar at one end may not be the best choice.

Budget will also have an impact on how realistic a theme and design can be, so getting them right at the start can save time, money and heartache later.


No matter how pleasant the surroundings, if people can’t sit comfortably and talk while they eat, they are unlikely to come back. Getting the seating arrangements right is vital. If the restaurant is aimed at people who want to eat quickly and spend as little time as possible sitting at a table, placing tables close together can work, especially if the restaurant is self-service and does not have staff who have to work between the tables. If the restaurant is aimed at providing a leisurely dining experience then more space is required between tables to afford customers their own space and allow staff to manoeuvre safely and unobtrusively.


Ambience is created using lighting, furnishings, decoration and possibly music. All of these need to work together so choosing them to compliment each other and create the desired ambience is vital. Bright lighting and upbeat music may be all right for a fast-food restaurant but it will not fit well with a more classically-themed restaurant aiming at a sophisticated clientele who want to spend a significant amount of their day or evening dining.


Even when the theme, design and ambience are right the restaurant must be functional. Seating arrangements must allow for staff to do their job of taking orders and serving food and also allow customers to move freely when they need to. The kitchen must also be very carefully designed to make the most of available space whilst remaining wholly functional.


If a bar is to be situated within the restaurant the same principles will apply to its design and construction. It is always worth considering consulting professionals such as Dawnvale at http://www.dawnvale.com/