Restaurant Development & Design

July-August 2017

restaurant development + design is a user-driven resource for restaurant professionals charged with building new locations and remodeling existing units.

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J U L Y / A U G U S T 2 0 1 7 • r e s t a u r a n t d e v e l o p m e n t + d e s i g n • 9 Dining Desires Source: AlixPartners poet's studio might look like today. "Four key elements — calligraphy, ink, paper and stone (used to grind out ink for writ- ing) — were incorporated into a social dining room with the original brand colors of royal blue and champagne woven throughout," says Peng. Abstract Chinese paintings behind the bar and a fixture comprised of large paint- brushes dangling from the ceiling serve as references to Dongpo's life and work. One of the biggest challenges on the project was to take the restaurant group's fine-dining tradition and adapt it to a more casual LA setting. To bring the traditional Chinese fine-dining style — which often includes expensive materials like velvet and fine china place settings — down in scale, the design team opted to include an exposed ceiling, mix-and- match seating, found objects in the entry and a graffiti wall in the dining room. These playful elements help retain Sichuan culture but also allow the space to fit the streetscape style of Universal CityWalk. Says Peng, "Taken together, these design solutions successfully trans- late the Chinese Meizhou Dongpo brand into a new metropolitan market in the United States." 41% of Millennials prefer fast casual to casual dining. 38% of consumers would like to see more casual-dining locations open near them despite reports that segment visits are stagnant. 37% of consumers would like to see more fast-casual dining locations open near them. 34% of consumers would like to see more fast-food dining locations open near them. 74% of consumers order delivery from the same establishment routinely (however, 53% of those say a lack of other options is the reason). 20% of consumers who visit fine-dining establishments 2 to 4 times per month plan to increase their number of visits over the next year. Photo by David Sprague Photo by Aaron Leitz

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