It’s pretty clear that the COVID-19 pandemic has forever altered life as we know it. That includes restaurant design—at least, according to a recent article from ADPRO, Architectural Digest’s industry publication for architects and designers. The article features several well-known restaurant designers who explain the ways the COVID age will impact restaurant design for years to come.
The ADPRO article focuses on a few things: namely, how designers will “create spaces that accommodate social distancing requirements while bringing back the delight and romance of the dining experience.” First and foremost, that means privacy. It looks like restaurants aren’t likely to return to what the article describes as the “elbow-to-elbow charm of a buzzing, tightly packed dining room,” at least for now. “We’ll be designing restaurants where privacy is key, so that small groups can gather in intimate spaces, well distanced from others,” designer Patricia Urquiola said, explaining that designers are using furniture, greenery, and lighting to create a cocoon of sorts.
That also means continuing to creatively utilize outdoor spaces, like the greenhouses and huts of the COVID age. (Think pocket gardens, tented parking lots, and designed pavilions, all with “lounge furnishings, accessories, and even art.”) Finally, designers are getting creative with barriers, ditching the safety plexiglass in favor of “comforting extensions of the brand” like partitions and screening and playing up dim, sexy lighting to enhance coziness and intimacy.
Curious about how post-COVID dining might look? Ready to leap feet-first into the cocooned booths of tomorrow? Check out the full article here.