Combining Safety and Aesthetics In Restaurant Design This 2021

7 Restaurant Design Trends to Mix with Your Safety Measures


With pivots in the hospitality and service industry came rising restaurant design trends that will continue to change the way establishments accommodate guests and customers.

Now that more and more customers are opting to order their food online instead of going out to dine, restaurants should be quick to adapt both their facilities and design to maintain and grow their customer base.

As a starting point for establishments, this article from Parterre lists the latest restaurant design trends that combine  restaurant safety measures during COVID and aesthetic design:

1. Safety and Comfortability

One major restaurant change is that many establishments extended their dining outdoors. Plexiglass barriers also made an appearance with altered seating arrangements that promote social distancing are now required.

Moreover, anything that can be made contactless was prioritized. More and more customers are paying online or via QR codes to decrease in-person contact.

Expect these restaurant trends to stay and start finding ways to work your design around these safety measures.

2. Dining Variety

While we mostly saw in-person dining, delivery and takeout in the past, the pandemic pushed restaurants to get creative. There were those who were able to adapt by offering meal kits, self-service kiosks and contactless pickup, ensuring that they remain profitable.

Even data from the National Restaurant Association proved that many would buy meal kits if it was offered by their favorite restaurant. This  shows that while customers are missing their most-loved meals, they will still prioritize their safety.

The only way to continue being top-of-mind is when your restaurant provides purchase options.

3. Textures

Another restaurant design trend on the rise is the layering of different textures and finishes. The pandemic added a twist to this as  more and more are preferring long-lasting textures that are easier to sanitize.

You can expect functional flooring such as LVT, which is  durable while also able to mimic other abstract finishes, to shine in the next few months. Organic elements such as live wall treatments and water features also breathes life to a restaurant.

To add depth and cohesion to the space, it’s also important to keep in mind other elements in the room such as lighting and fabrics.

4. Unique and Local Gastronomic Experiences

No matter which unique restaurant design concept you implement, it all still boils down to the dining experience you deliver to the customer.

The National Restaurant Association estimates that about 63% of customers are more likely to spend on experience than product. Since the pandemic hit, one might expect these numbers to not matter as much. However, it’s also important to remember that people continue to be stuck in their homes and this might mean the desire is stronger than before.

Now that international travel is still limited, it’s time to highlight local flavors and experiences. Tap local artists to design wall murals invite rising chefs in the neighborhood to create new dishes, or renovate your property to give everything a fresh look once in-person dining is more possible.

5. Storytelling

For the hospitality and restaurant industry, safety and comfort should be one of the brand’s major pillars—especially after a year like 2020.

Make sure you are continuously finding ways to tell your brand’s story authentically to improve personal connection with the customer. This should reflect in your restaurant design or with the way your staff serves diners. However, also take note of how having a sanitized and safe interior play into all these.

6. Warm Palettes

Warm hues can give off a cozy vibe and allow diners to relax and unwind in your space. It also provides a sense of cleanliness, which only ties together the feeling of comfort that a place exudes.

Erika Woelfel, Vice President of Colors and Creative Services at Behr,  once said that “colors found in nature can help customers relax and enjoy their company.” So, the next time you redecorate, make sure to keep warm colors such as reds, yellows or orange in mind.

7. Online Presence and Community

You need to communicate to continue being profitable, and reaching out to your customers through social media is your best option. Be transparent online how you continue to tackle safety concerns and share possible space improvements.

Also use this opportunity to make a more personal connection with your audience. Hold virtual cooking classes, give a sneak peek of a new dish, or reveal the recipe of one of the options on your menu. The more you try to deepen the connection online, the more that they’ll visit once in-person dining is more feasible.

For 2021, restaurant design trends mean nothing unless it’s mixed in with safety and comfort to ease your customers’ worries. Make sure you’re balancing both aesthetics and improved sanitation practices using these seven trends as your starting points.

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About Triple Crown Construction:

Triple Crown Construction is a Partner-Grade provider specializing in pre-construction, commercial construction and hospitality renovation. This allows you to focus on driving revenue while we focus on your construction projects.

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