Home' Hotel Management : HM December 2017 Contents It is unlikely that there has ever been or ever will be a hospitality project designed 100
per cent according to their design guidelines. Every hotel group will try to tell you that
you must build exactly to their requirements so that they can achieve consistency within
the brand across all of the portfolio. This is no different to how they would like to have
every franchise or management agreement to be on the same terms, but this simply does
not happen. The reality is that each project contains compromises that are reached in
order to achieve a project in keeping with the hotel brand’s positioning and the owner’s
requirements. Of course, there can be no compromise with health and life safety items,
but as every project is in a different location with different dynamics, so too must the
design guidelines reflect a moderate and reasonable amount of flexibility.
When considering your renovation, make sure you are the one leading the process. By
doing some simple legwork in advance you are giving yourself and your project the best
conditions for it to be a success. n
“It is unlikely that there has ever been or ever
will be a hospitality project designed 100 per
cent according to their design guidelines.”
PAUL WISTE, leading hospitality design consultant
able to benefit from the expertise of the before-mentioned
specialists. Yet because you are the priority you might receive
the attention that you expect that will make your project
unique and more reflective of your brief. If you are unsure
where to start, ask the hotel group to put you in touch with
their design team for some advice and recommendations.
Ask them why these firms were recommended, and don’t
hold back if you question their initial advice.
ARE NOT DESIGN LAWS
Generally speaking, design guidelines are a highly
informative set of guidance notes produce by a hotel
management group that prescribe the best practices and
valuable advice to complete a project specific to a brand.
They are exclusively designed for new-build projects and
rarely, if ever, reference renovation projects. This is because
renovation projects already have a set of bones that for
the most part cannot be broken while new builds are
jellyfish. This means that with your renovation additional
compromises are going to have to be accepted by the
management group that would not necessarily be agreed to
during a new-build project.
Leading Australian interior designer PAUL KELLY
reveals his top five tips to getting restaurants right.
1. DON’T LET STAFF HIDE
In a hotel environment, staff are trained to perform duties that usually evolve
from a wide ranging scope of promotion through the system. For example,
a waiter could have been working in an office capacity in a previous location.
The trick with food and beverage is that we want the staff to be thinking
of the customer experience only and we need them to be on the floor,
providing support and mainly energy to the restaurant space. Placing wait
stations in an open location that reduces giving staff the ability to hide, for
example, forces the team member to focus elsewhere (hopefully on serving
2. SEPARATE THE BAR FROM THE KITCHEN
The bar needs to sell beverages and the kitchen needs to sell food, and
combining them confuses the customer and the staff. They can be close
and should be for staffing numbers, but giving each of these areas their own
identity assists in making the clients' experience simple and obvious, which
when you a dealing with alcohol is imperative.
3. SHOW OFF THE KITCHEN
Irrespective of the size or staff numbers in the kitchen, customers need to
see where their meals are coming from. I am not talking about a little pass
window because the customer, if they are going to pay for a quality product,
need to see and hear the origins of their fine fare. I am always nervous eating
food that arrives like room service and instantly second guess the freshness
or the heat of the meal.
4. MAKE IT EASY FOR THE CUSTOMER
When laying out a restaurant, the customer needs to know where to go
without asking questions or feel that they are intruding in the kitchen
for example. We always create a network of alternate floor finishes and
walkways that tell the customer that if they keep following this tile, for
example, it will take them somewhere which is also public, like the toilets.
We find this also works for the staff as well, as they lay the furniture out
within this grid created and are always keeping the overall furniture concept
together and the restaurant looking neat and tidy.
5. DON’T MAKE IT TOO OPEN
Most restaurants have periods of the day and night when there are no
customers. People can smell a dud restaurant, and they are usually the ones
without any customers, but sometimes this is due to a number of other
factors, one of them being nothing to do with the quality of the restaurant.
There is no need having a restaurant with a sea of furniture for the busy
periods, because it’s the quiet periods that matter. We always lay out our
restaurants in zones and split up the area into a number of smaller sections
and this allows the customer to feel comfortable in a reduced scale whilst
still maintaining the concept of the restaurant.
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