Establishing a project brief for your new café, restaurant or bar interior is the first step in understanding your aspirations and functional requirements for your new venture. This all-important document will enable you to prioritise the elements that are key to a successful design. It is also an important element of your business plan and will be a foundational statement against which your business success can be continuously measured.
The value of a successful hospitality interior cannot be overstated. It is often the draw-card for interested customers, before they even see the menu. The power of the often-illusive ‘ambience’ can make or break a business, but creating ambience is more than tea-lights and a good play list. Engaging an interior designer is as key to your success as engaging a chef to write your menu.
An interior designer will require your brief in order to prepare a scope of works and fee proposal for you. Once engaged, your designer will develop your initial brief into a much more detailed checklist of functional and aspirational parameters (sometimes referred to as a return-brief), assisting you to think through the finer details that may not immediately come to mind.
Your initial interior design brief should provide the following information as a minimum. Hypothetical answers have been provided to assist your response:
Business Name: CoLAB Coffee
Business Description: Specialty café offering a unique range of single origin grounds and small complimentary range of pre-prepared food items.
Business Location: Hardware Lane, Melbourne.
Target customer: Mainly tourist traffic, exploring the center of Melbourne’s iconic laneway culture, with a small local community of inner-city dwellers.
What type of experience are they looking for? Customer is seeking an iconic Melbourne ‘coffee’ experience with fast-service takeaway and short-stay dining.
Business Hours: 6.30am – 4.00pm Monday-Friday / 8.00am – 3pm Weekends.
Business Format: Predominantly take-away offering with limited short-term interior seating (non-serviced).
Brand Identity: If the business brand has been developed, please provide samples of the logo, website, menu etc.
Premises area: 30m2 total
Lease (if applicable): 5 years
Existing interior elements to be reused: Cool-room, grease-trap.
Existing services to be reused: Air conditioning, commercial cook-top/oven and extraction canopy.
Landlord restrictions: Exterior shop front finishes cannot be changed.
Local council restrictions: Heritage overlay to this laneway may restrict signage design.
To offer an authentic Melbourne café experience.
To establish a solid community of inner city dweller ‘regulars’.
To create an atmosphere of retreat, but also of friendly, vibrant community.
Create a sense of a ‘real hidden gem’ within this tourist center.
To make available a retail offering of signature coffee beans after the first year of trade.
To offer a point of difference from our competitors.
Coffee Counter with fixed stool seating x 6
Point of sale counter with integrated ambient food display
Operable shop front window for direct thru-window service.
Interior table / seating for 8
Small prep. Kitchen (back of house)
Small wash-up zone.
Cool room (reuse existing)
(provide detailed specifications including dimensions. Your interior designer will not specify your commercial equipment for you; that’s your expertise! Alternatively enlist the help of a commercial kitchen consultant.)