Adapting your venue for New Hospitality
Coming out of the other side of lockdown there will be many challenges for businesses in the hospitality sector. Many of these are related to customer anxiety. What was once a day to day activity will now be considered a non-essential risk. Customers will have concerns about leaving their personal space and mixing with strangers.
So how can you mitigate this anxiety? How can you gain that essential trust for repeat business?
A good starting point is to look at the customer journey from start to finish, walk through your venue as a customer considering each step and how you can minimise the number of contact areas. Flow of customers in and out of your venue will need careful consideration. A focus on hosting and on-hand direction will be important to ensure smooth flow and prevent bunching.
In turn, how will the layout of your venue need to adapt to provide the space required? If a 2m spacing is needed between tables will you need to remove covers, or are there other solutions you could adopt to minimise this loss? Can you re-purpose other areas of your venue to occupy covers? The type of furniture you use could be changed to maximise space efficiency, will those large community tables be as attractive to customers now? Or will breaking these up into smaller tables help you?
As covers are lost there is a risk that your space could feel a little empty, and the overall feel of the environment may not be quite the same. Using room dividers will help break up the space, and go a long way towards mitigating anxiety by creating a physical barrier between customers.
You can implement small changes like these without having to re-fit an entire venue, look at repurposing existing furniture and sourcing recycled items. Good creative solutions can be found on a budget if you're working with the right people.
It may seem a long way off until lockdown restrictions are lifted, but give yourself a mental date to work to for reopening, this will allow you and your team to focus on the space in between and set yourselves achievable goals.
If you are in need of interior design planning for your restaurant, get in touch with Graphic Kitchen and let us help you succeed with safe spacing so that you are up and running in a matter of time.