We have just signed the lease on our second location!
These past few months have been a whirlwind of meetings with brokers, property managers, landlords and others. Now, after an exhausting, and exhaustive search, I’m delighted to announce that our second store will be opening just down the street from Houston’s famed Williams Tower.
I’ve been astonished to see the range of work that our architects have produced while helping us to realize our ideas. My desire to understand what makes great architectural design took me to the premises of many companies throughout Houston and only served to reinforce my belief that great restaurant design should be ‘timeless.’ The restaurant you dine at 10 years after your first visit should be just as beguiling and enticing as the first day you set foot inside.
A restaurant’s design should blend a variety of materials ranging from concrete and metal to steel and wood, fixtures and fittings to carpeting; merged correctly this disparate group of elements should create exactly the right balance of hard and soft materials.
Colors should be harmonized as well and will help to instill the ambiance you wish to create. Lighting, too, can be very helpful in this respect and has the ability to establish an upbeat, relaxing or intimate atmosphere throughout the restaurant.
Even the seating should be unique and make your guests feels welcome and special no matter where they decide to sit. A guest should truly feel as if they’ve been transported to another time and place, a distant land where they are king or queen.
Restaurants should exude an aura that makes all your guests feel welcome. The layout shouldn’t be an obstacle course for guests to maneuver around but should, instead, guide patrons towards finding their choice of seating, understand where to place their order and where to pick up their order.
A restaurant designed with a simple, elegant, yet easy to understand layout benefits guests immensely and can still communicate a certain mood through the appropriate mix of materials, lighting and color. To me, a great restaurant is a place where customers feel relaxed, valued and comfortable.
Finding a good architect is a journey all its own. There are a lot of wonderful people who become architects but you must hire a person who can show results that coincide with your wishes. To my way of thinking it seems that being a good architect requires you to be engineer, scientist and artist all rolled into one. Engineer to understand the math behind creating a solid structure, scientist to be able to think logically and, finally, the artist is required to unite math and science in a package that is aesthetically appealing and a treat for all the senses.
Good architects conceive designs that thrill your senses, and a great architectural design can evoke a sense of wonder that, perhaps, goes beyond the time and space in which it was created.