Five Minutes With: Jack McGarry, The Dead Rabbit, one of the world’s most award-winning bars. Named World’s Best Bar and World’s Best Cocktail Menu at the Tales of the Cocktail’s Spirited Awards last summer, it has been a big winner at the same event in prior years as well.
Restaurant unit growth has slowed and talk of a “restaurant recession” is bubbling up again. Chicago-based NPD Group’s spring 2016 ReCount restaurant census, which includes restaurants open as of March 31, 2016, shows that total restaurant chain unit growth was flat from last spring and independent restaurant growth declined by 3 percent. What’s more, NPD’s forecast doesn’t show significant growth returning any time soon.
Nightclub and restaurant designer/architect John Sofio, founder of Los Angeles-based design-build firm Built Inc., often creates statement floors in the venues he designs. He shares some of his strategies for creating floors that make a big design impact and perform well in restaurant environments.
Jeremy Levitt and Andrew Cohen co-founded New York-based Parts and Labor Design in 2009, taking what they characterize as a bare-knuckled, straightforward approach to high-end design. Custom furniture installations are typically a big part of their projects, many of which in the restaurant space have won top design awards. Levitt shares some insights on the furniture category.
Selection and installation of effective, efficient HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) systems is expensive and not exactly sexy compared to other key elements of restaurant design, but it’s among the most critical to get right.
To Brian Orter, who established his New York-based lighting design firm BOLD in 2008, great restaurant design depends on successful integration of architecture, interior design and lighting, with lighting ultimately sparking the personality of a space. We tapped him for insights on new product trends and for a few pointers on getting lighting right.