Restaurant Development & Design

NOV-DEC 2018

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

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N O V E M B E R / D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 8 • S P O N S O R E D C O N T E N T • 7 Who is Grand Rapids Chair Company? First and foremost, we are an American manufacturer with a specific focus on craft and modern design. What makes us different is our ability to personalize our products more than any other company, whether that's tweaking a standard prod- uct or developing one from the ground up. What design trends are you antici- pating for 2019? We're going to see an even stronger shift away from industrial style (at least I hope) to spaces that feel more authentic and intentional. Expect more color on furni- ture and more vibrant patterns on fabrics, tiles, and flooring. One exciting trend is that restau- rants are revamping their interiors more frequently to keep the customer's experience front and center. While the physical footprint is shrinking because of delivery and take-out, design will still be key. You'll see those bolder colors, more unexpected uses of materials, and bespoke accents like wallpaper, tiles, and lighting. As the head of new product develop- ment, what's your favorite product? The Hurdle collection. It's so simple — no frills, no fuss. Hurdle uses quality materi- als like white oak and steel to create a super strong foundation. It's approach- able with just enough quirkiness to make it memorable. What color palette are you loving right now? Color is such a personal experience. As long as the palette is authentic to the brand, it can be successful. That being said, I love seeing rust and olive green being used as neutrals that are comple- mented by dusty pinks. Aside from the obvious, how does furniture play a role in restaurant design? First, furniture helps restaurants tell their story and articulate their message. Furni- ture is increasingly viewed as an integrat- ed aspect of how to bring a brand to life. There are many ways to do this – custom color, intricate fabric, even the curvature or angularity of a chair — all can play a role in branding. Second, furniture physically defines space. It can establish the context for the overall atmosphere and even the types of customer interactions. Think of a com- munal table versus barstools perched at a window. Each configuration lends itself to a different set of customer expectations. McDonald's pioneered this idea when they introduced fireplaces, TVs, and soft seating into their stores with their Mc- Café campaign. Furniture can change the entire experience. What does "design-forward" mean to Grand Rapids Chair Company? Five years ago, we made a commitment to team up with industrial designers to create unique products that are both structurally and aesthetically long-lasting. We balance trend with practicality. While we admire (and create!) modern design, we don't want to be the fast-fashion of furniture. A Q&A with Dean Jeffery, director of marketing, Grand Rapids Chair Company TALKING DESIGN TRENDS AND COLOR PALETTES The Reece barstool features a plywood shell and steel tube frame and legs. The minimal design of the Hurdle barstool offers an informal sophistication that makes it ideal for a variety of spaces.

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