How to furnish a starred restaurant?
There are several considerations to be made when deciding how to furnish a starred restaurant. The aim is to create an exclusive location that matches the excellence of the restaurant’s cuisine. The philosophy behind the menu and the gastronomic itinerary offered by the restaurant have a particular influence on the furnishings. Without forgetting the location and the context in which the restaurant is set.
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Having one or more Michelin stars testifies to the excellence of a restaurant’s cuisine and experience. If it is true that the menu and the inventiveness of the chef are the main parameters on which the judgement is based and guarantee the quality of a starred restaurant, the role played by the decor should not be underestimated. The latter is just as decisive for the success of any restaurant business.
Indeed, the décor contributes greatly to creating a welcoming atmosphere and making the stay in the restaurant a pleasant one. The tables, chairs, decorations and the arrangement of the various elements in the room form the framework which enhances and embellishes table service.
Taken together and individually, all the elements in a starred restaurant must be true to the restaurant’s philosophy. The décor, together with the menu, defines the identity of the restaurant and makes it immediately identifiable to customers.
The type of cuisine offered by the chef of a Michelin-starred restaurant is one of the aspects that has the greatest influence on the choice of furnishings. A modern interpretation and an innovative conception of cuisine suggest the use of essential furniture, in which dishes and experimentation take centre stage. On the other hand, a cuisine inspired by the Italian culinary tradition is enhanced even more if the service takes place in a setting that includes more classical elements.
When making these considerations, one must also bear in mind the environmental context in which the restaurant is set. A restaurant in the centre of a city and one in the middle of the countryside offer a different experience to customers. These differences need to be carefully considered by designers during the planning phase.
How should the interior design of a starred restaurant be structured?
When designing and furnishing a top restaurant, the customer experience must be at the centre. Thinking about the overall offer and the route the customer takes inside the restaurant helps to design the spaces in the best possible way and to enhance the restaurant’s strengths.
The success of the interior design also depends on the lighting system. The amount of light and the temperature in the room must be well balanced. The aim is always to make the stay in the restaurant as pleasant as possible.
The chef’s instructions and suggestions also play a role in the choice of furnishings. The chef’s idea of space must be listened to and respected as much as possible. For example, there are chefs who want to emphasise the conviviality of the experience, so they prefer to use large tables, to be shared with other guests. Then there are chefs who consider the act of eating to be an intimate experience, so they prefer to create small islands in their restaurant, where they can taste the dishes in a sort of solitude. As for chairs, you can choose traditional wooden, metal or plastic seats. Or you can break the rules and make comfortable armchairs available to customers.
The furnishing project must never be limited to the room. Rather, it must be developed in a harmonious way, taking into account the entire room. For example, you need to decide whether to leave the kitchen open or organise it in a separate area from the main room. The first solution has several advantages, since it allows the chef to monitor the situation in the room in real time and, at the same time, allows customers to watch the kitchen team in action. The second solution is more traditionally oriented and can be an appropriate choice when the focus is on the dish and the ingredients rather than on the process.
It is often overlooked, but the space occupied by the wine cellar is also an integral part of the restaurant’s interior design. First of all, the wine cellar area must meet precise requirements in terms of temperature and humidity in order to store wine correctly. Custom-made shelving is an excellent solution for this area of the restaurant. It offers sufficient space and allows you to organise your stock in an orderly manner, distributing red, rosé, white and sparkling wines. All in a structure that is consistent with the rest of the venue’s décor.
Following the furnishing project for a starred restaurant is a stimulating challenge. The aim of the work is twofold: on the one hand, to emphasise the exclusivity of the restaurant’s catering offer and, on the other, to create a refined environment in which to welcome customers. The effort involved in these interior design projects is substantial, but often decisive in getting the business featured in the world’s most prestigious food and wine guides.
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