Furnishing for the hospitality industry is always a challenge. Hotels want furniture that’s inviting, but sturdy and practical, too. Restaurants worry about portability, stackability and sanitizing pieces. Luckily, these days institutional furniture manufacturers are finding ways to make pieces that marry form and function very well.
Finding the Right Furnishings
First the design team must communicate clearly with the client. Understanding their brand is a key. Here it’s important to consider the brand’s image and goals. What market are they targeting? Are they a traditional establishment? Or do they cater to a clientele involved in environmentalism, cutting-edge tech, or another special interest area?
These days, hospitality furniture is better than ever before. Designers are taking inspiration from all kinds of places. Some are chasing a specific look, like the vintage mid-century modernaesthetic. Others have been inspired to use sustainable materials.
Understanding the guest is key to understanding his or her needs. For hotel furniture, there are many questions that have to be asked here. Are they more likely to be traveling for business, or for pleasure? Are they likely to be young, old, or perhaps a family with a range of ages? Bean bag chairs might be great for a youth hostel, for example, but businesspeople are looking for sturdy desks with proper chairs.
Considerations when choosing restaurant furniture are slightly different. Table and work surfaces have to be sanitized several times a day. They need to be durable and easily cleaned. Stackable or folding chairs without upholstery are great choices. They are durable, easy to store, and easy to clean. Booths in casual eateries can be upholstered withvinyls so that they wipe clean.
Knowing the customer is key when designing for a space. If lots of young children will be in the space, patterns that resist stains and are easy to clean could be a good fit. For a hotel or restaurant that sees mostly business travelers, comfort,pratical function and a hint of luxury are keys.
Great Looking Furnishings
Popular trends in hospitality are leading to some great-looking furniture turning up in restaurants and hotels. In restaurants, designers are moving away from fussy, highly specific themes. Instead of steampunk, rural or dive-inspired spaces, diners can expect to see brighter and more neutral looks. This seems to be a trend toward more inviting spaces, which can only be a good thing.
Hotels are adapting in a big way. These days they’re having fun, playing with color and materials. Guests will be more likely to see warm colors, metals and vintage design elements deployed in their favorite lodgings. At the same time, they’re adding more tech-friendly features to rooms. Robot room service, smartphone keys and more are being tested.
Socially Responsible Manufacturers
As the public becomes more concerned about global warming and other issues, social responsibility is becoming ever more important. And it seems this trend will continue indefinitely. In their collections, Warisan has found great ways to combine renewable materials with comfortable design.
In fact, this firm has committed to using plantation woods and veneers in its goods. These materials look great, while helping to maintain a greener planet. Warisan makes environmentally-friendly “green” fabrics for upholstering furniture. It’s always exciting to watch as companies adapt to the changing landscape in hospitality furnishings.