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How restaurant furniture can enhance the eating experience

23rd Mar 2015
Tracey Sanders
Restaurant owners have a hard time trying to make sure they create a good experience for all. Often hours of planning and preparation go into the menus, style of cooking, music and atmosphere created. However one of the things that are equally important is the layout of the restaurant and how pieces of furniture can alter and improve the experience for all. This article will explore this.
 
Think about flying and eating – what springs to mind? Being cramped up in seats with elbows digging into the person sitting next to you. It just so happens that most of us agree that 35,000ft meals are probably not in the top three of the best we have ever had. This is partly down to the restrictive and uncomfortable furniture and layout, and lessons can be taken from this and applied on the ground.
 
Space is an important point. It makes sense that restaurants which are small can not devote room to fancy and inviting furniture. That is not to say that smaller spaces can’t be enhanced. 
The basic principle is the bigger the space the more furniture that can be housed. A restaurant that looks busy is bound to attract people in because of the psychological approval this gives. Having more furniture then allows you to accommodate more guests.
Experiment with the space also. E.g. Creating booths or private areas can make your restaurant seem more unique and attractive for couples for example. Use the furniture and colours to promote this.  
 
Think carefully about your seating. Those of us who work at an office will testify that sitting at uncomfortable chairs for long periods give us bad backs, makes us ache, grumpy etc. Who then would want to do something as pleasurable as going to a restaurant only to sit on uncomfortable chairs? Ensure chairs are stylish, trendy and modern or to suit the atmosphere of your restaurant, but make sure peoples backs are well supported and there are comfortable cushions to sit on. Think about the height of the chairs also. People don’t want to be reaching up to the tables to eat. If all of these factors are taken into account, you are likely to have pleased guests that will spend more and stay longer.
 
Think also about your tables. Make sure they are strong and sturdy and avoid the wobbly leg which always annoys people. Ensure a range of tables from small and large are within your restaurant so you can cater for all manner of guests and parties. If you have a successful large function, the word will be spread, meaning extra income for you in the long run. While investment in tables might be expensive, it will pay for itself in the long run with happier customers. 
 
Provide an outdoor space. This adds an extra dining and eating / drinking area to your establishment in effect and will obviously be popular in the summer. Make the furniture comfortable and inviting once again. E.g. Remember to use a parasol to stop customers getting sunburnt in the hot days of July. As outdoor furniture can become weathered quickly, pick something that is easy to maintain. 
  
Are you a chain or a single restaurant entity? Think of well-known restaurants. What do they have in common? All the furniture is uniform and standard. This acts as a brand image stamp and is a powerful selling technique and makes the place feel safe and familiar for customers, making them more likely to return.
 
Consider adding the ‘little’ and ‘finishing’ touches to your furniture to give it a polished and welcoming look. Flowers on tables, nice tablecloths, and artwork can enhance even the most plain and ordinary furniture.  
 
Remember ultimately that restaurants are more than just about eating. They provide a space for people to socialise, develop relations with others, and relax which are all important parts of our lives. Creating the right space and having accommodating furniture can be a winner or loser for your guests when taking this into account.
 
For further details on ranges of restaurant furniture, please contact us.
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