When it comes to designing, creating, and breathing life into a commercial hospitality venue or space, it is interior design which pulls location together with theme, layout, function, and branding.
From the way you layout the various furnishings to the way you use colour, light, and decorative accessories throughout the space, interior design needs to support the way a space is used and enhance the overall experience of each and every customer.
But with more and more hospitality businesses carving out niche gaps in the market, finding new ways to delight customers, and increasing the competitive nature of the local market, your business should be finding new and innovative ways of standing out. And it all starts here – with some tips on how to boost the customer experience from our team of seasoned interior design professionals.
Choose the right space
Before you even consider focussing on your interior design or engaging the services of a commercial interior design company, you need to make sure that you are setting up your bar, restaurant, or hotel business in the best location and premises for your brand.
While many open spaces can be shaped and adapted to your individual needs, as a business it is important that you ensure that the space you occupy has the right amount of demand for your services and experience, and that the branding and interior style of your business compliments the space itself.
The full customer journey
Hotel businesses tend to focus on the bedrooms first, and communal spaces second. Similarly, restaurants will design the perfect kitchen and create the perfect dining tables, while bars channel most of their focus onto the bar itself and the way the tables and chairs are situated.
One thing that all of these hospitality businesses have in common, however, is the need for a reception space – sometimes requiring a full blown reception desk and office, and sometimes needing just a greeters stand. Either way, this is the first impression that customers will get of your space – and if you want to create an immersive and enjoyable experience from the moment they enter, this needs to be part and parcel of the package you create.
Your entrance area should be warm and welcoming, reflecting your branding and immediately inviting customers into the world or experiential space that you have created – using the right furnishings, a warm light setting, and decorative extras like plants or comfortable sofas.
Is it ‘Insta-friendly’?
This question is becoming part and parcel of the industry’s approach to interior design – with social media embodying such a core part of many businesses’ marketing activity. If your business can become known for its social media friendly photo opportunities, whether in the dishes themselves or the surroundings you create, then you will benefit from the best kind of free marketing – word of mouth and customer recommendation.
To help make this a reality for your business, consider ways that you can use interior design to create something unique in your space. It could be a funky backdrop or wall; it could be a perfectly balanced floor-to-ceiling bar; it could be fun and immersive bathrooms. Whatever it is, if it encourages people to take and share photos, it’s a worthwhile investment.
Think about furniture and the way it is laid out
From bars to hotels to restaurants and beyond, the whole concept of a hospitality business is that it takes what is essentially a functional space and delivers it in a way that aims to delight its users. People have to eat; they have to sleep, and they like to drink. What turns these necessary actions into immersive experiences is the locations they choose to go when they do any one of these things – with interior design part and parcel of the environment they look for and the comfort they can enjoy.
Furniture contributes to the aesthetic presentation of your space and is integral to providing comfort for your customers. It can also play directly into a theme of your choosing and can also impact the flow of movement through and across your business premises, in the way that furniture placement frames the use of floor space.
As a commercial interior design company, we work with businesses large and small to bring their premises to life – transforming open spaces and turning poky corners into coveted intimate dining areas. The value of interior design cannot be overstated when designing a hospitality business – encompassing everything from colour to layout, furniture, decoration, and so much more.
For advice and support, reach out to our team directly.