Restaurant Development & Design

JUL-AUG 2019

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

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5 2 • 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 • J U L Y / A U G U S T 2 0 1 9 THE OUTFITTER R emember when ne-dining experiences were all about starched white tablecloths, tuxedoed waiters and fancy food served in quiet rooms? Such tradi- tional characteristics still dene many operations in the segment, but they're no longer requisite parts of the expe- rience. Fine dining is evolving, with chefs and operators loos- ening their ties and letting their hair down a bit when it comes to creating experiences that better resonate with consumers today. Stellar, creative cuisine is a constant, but design priori- ties have shifted to creating ne-dining experiences that are less fussy, less intimidating and more engaging. The challenge, says Vince Stroop, partner and executive design director at New York-based Jeffrey Beers International, is to balance luxury with approachability. "Interiors in this segment denitely need to feel elevated and luxurious but ab- solutely not intimidating," he says. "An element of intimida- tion always seemed like an accepted factor in traditional ne dining, but that's no longer appropriate or desired by clients or by customers." Stroop shares insights on design trends in the segments and favorite strategies for creating elevated yet approachable interiors. The Look-Up Moment. "Be it gravity-defying wine tow- ers, striking light installations or art, we nd that patrons of ne-dining restaurants want to be wowed by a big idea that presides over the restaurant and makes it instantly (and Insta- grammably) identiable. We used this design ploy at Sequoia in Washington, D.C., where a series of cascading light xtures holds court above the lofty space overlooking the Potomac River," Stroop says. Solutions: Statement lighting, custom ceiling treatments with unexpected materials, dramatic mobiles, suspended sculptural art installations Mood Lighting. While statement lighting creates drama and adds a wow factor, other, more discrete lighting is equally important in ne-dining interiors. More than in any other seg- ment, designs here require a sophisticated, layered approach to lighting, Stroop says. "You need to be able to set a mood, to create mystery and romance. Even if they're at a business dinner, ne-dining guests want to have that sort of magical experience. Lighting, much of which they don't even see the source of, is critical to creating that effect," he notes. Solutions: Programmable dimmers, combined/layered light sources sources (ambient, focused and accent), archi- tectural lighting, LED bulbs carefully selected for proper color temperature and dimmability Vince Stroop on Fine Dining VINCE STROOP Partner and executive design director, Jeffrey Beers International By Dana Tanyeri Hell's Kitchen's design incorporates both "look-up moments" and an artistic ap- proach to enhancing …exibility. Sliding metal screens incorporate the concept's logo and can be left open or pulled closed to create more private dining zones. Image courtesy of Dave Burk

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