10 Things to Know About Family Restaurant Interior Design
Family-centric restaurants have become a common feature in today’s food and hospitality industry, even attracting an entire market and demographic of their own. Parents want to eat out with their kids, but also take preventative measures against an unsuitable design for young children or disgruntled diners if a child misbehaves. This is where a place that is family-oriented comes in. A nicely executed family restaurant interior design undertakes several measures to make sure that all patrons are as physically comfortable and stress-free as possible.
From accounting for the comfort-level of large families to including kid-friendly furnishings, serving, and even lighting, several aspects of the design have to be considered carefully. To help with this, we’ll be taking a look at a few things you should consider while designing a family-centric restaurant.
10 major considerations for a family restaurant interior design
Good lighting is always the starting point of creating a family-friendly restaurant design. No one wants to dine in a place where the lighting has a harsh, headache-inducing glare, nor do they want to be in an environment that is too shadowy to properly look at their food. Therefore, fully formed family restaurant interior design must pay special attention to the inclusion of suitable lighting solutions.
Instead of straightforward LEDs, go for a combination of accent and ambient lighting. A pendant light that provides comfortable illumination for a single party can be hung over every dining table, while the central areas and lobbies can be lit by general LEDs, and welcoming spaces such as the reception could benefit from having unique decorative light fixtures as focal attractions.
Do not overlook the importance of natural lighting solutions in lieu of artificial ones, but always pay attention to window coverings and window-side seating arrangements to make sure that your guests are comfortable. Sometimes, harsh sunlight reflecting on a sun-facing window can annoy patrons, so good window coverings and the inclusion of leafy indoor foliage where needed can be effective ways to control that lighting.
Since a family restaurant caters to all manner of families—from those with elderly grandparents to big broods, small families with teenage children, and more—it is important to be cognizant of the furniture you use. Excellent family restaurant interior design strategies always feature the perfect blend of visually pleasant and plush surroundings for maximum patron comfort and the best possible dining experience.
In a family restaurant, sleek, modern, and pointy is a no-go. Not only does it pose more of a risk for injury in little ones, but it can also be physically uncomfortable for your more delicate patrons. Instead, opt for a balance of comfort and aesthetics while selecting the furniture, making sure the tables do not have pointy edges, and that the chairs are comfortable for adults and children alike.
3. Green Design
Family restaurant interior design must always respect the health of the guests, and maintain a good ambiance. This means that the environment must be perpetually fresh feeling, the food must be healthy, and the waste must be managed properly. Green design elements like hydroponic walls and indoor planters can provide a refreshing and rejuvenating aura to the whole interior design. You can even introduce Energy Star light fixtures to reduce electricity bills, save energy, and create a beautiful atmosphere at the same time.
Layout and furniture arrangement is a particularly important aspect to consider in family restaurant interior design. Kids tend to run all over the place, so the layout should be spacious enough to accommodate even the most naughty of troublemakers. The minimal amount of space between two dining tables is recommended to be 3 feet; but widen this standard to about 4-5 feet to make your layout roomier. That way, large families will have enough room to move around properly, and wandering kids can move about freely without bumping into other patrons.
5. Separate Your Bathrooms
In terms of spatial planning, you must always make sure that your bathrooms are designed in a separate wing of the building. The location must be centralized, but also fully concealed. No one—much less an entire family—wants to sit in a corner where one person or another is constantly opening or closing the bathroom door, and not having a fully concealed bathroom area is one of the most common problems faced in restaurant design. Therefore, separate locations for the bathroom must be accounted for in truly successful family restaurant interior design.
6. Stick to Neutral or Child-Friendly Themes
Since the patrons of a family-centric restaurant are often an amalgamation of all sorts of ages—spanning from kids and teenagers to adults and the older generation—it is important to choose a neutral theme. Generally speaking, it makes sense not to have a specific theme for such a scattered demographic, so as to ensure a visually pleasant family restaurant interior design that appeals to all ages and generations.
If you do decide to opt for a theme, be aware of the appeal and limits of each one. Something bright and juvenile may only attract the kids, whereas gothic accents or more open styles are teen-centric, and a high-concept, elegant design attracts adults. However, a combination of all three can be suitable for your patrons if executed properly. It can be challenging to balance all three aspects in a single space, but a more skilled and experienced designer can definitely manage it in a tasteful way.
7. Graphic Design & Marketing
The style of your graphic designs—including those featured on the menu and other ambient graphics—is another important factor to consider in the family restaurant interior design process. Make sure that your branding is not extremely juvenile, nor extremely high-end. A middle ground is the best way to go and will help to create a style that will make your patrons feel comfortable enough to visit your establishment again and again.
8. Emphasize Ergonomics
Don’t stop at merely ensuring the comfort of your guests when designing your establishment; a fully ergonomic and user-friendly restaurant design also respects the physical and psychological comfort of the staff. These considerations may include providing spacious aisle room between the tables, or including hidden passages and quick-connect lines for serving. The flow of the kitchen should be naturally sequential to the cooking process, and the dispatch area should be concealed from the outside. Moreover, body language and a range of comfortable potential customer postures must be considered and accounted for in the design and placement of the furniture. Only then can your family restaurant interior design be considered truly ergonomic.
9. Colors & Materials
The colors and materials used throughout the restaurant articulate the narrative of your theme. Any style of interior design you choose needs a back-story, which should add to the customer experience. The colors and materials are what translate that story into the ambiance. These two aspects of design are also responsible for creating a stimulating environment; you cannot choose a color scheme that will put off the diner’s appetite. Usually, warm colors like red and burgundy are used in restaurant spaces to maximize the patron’s appetite, and this is also true of competent family restaurant interior design. You must work in a relevant narrative for your setting, and translate it through the best color and material choice you can.
10. Table Seating Capacity & Flexible Layout
The thing about managing a family restaurant is that you never know what size families are going to show up to your establishment. Therefore, it is necessary to accommodate a flexible and modular dining layout. Make sure that most of your dining layout is comprised of four-seaters. This specific table size can hold a minimal amount of people, but can also be combined with other four-seater tables to create a larger table arrangement. Using this technique can make your family restaurant interior design highly flexible, and you’ll be able to accommodate a huge number of patrons in a small amount of time by simply rearranging a few tables.
These are just a few of the ways good family restaurant interior design can create a better, more tailored experience for your guests. At CAS, our designers are well aware of the impact of even the smallest of details, and we are experts at managing the logistics and functional and aesthetic ends of design projects. Therefore, we are well aware of, and take the greatest care of all aspects, no matter how big or small, in order to deliver the very best services and designs to our clients.