From a vivacious Chinese restaurant to a romantic Western eatery to a quiet coffee shop and a hip and trendy bar, each eating location has a different interior design aesthetic. People no longer choose a restaurant just based on the quality of the food; the ambiance and surroundings of the restaurant are just as important.
Restaurant lighting design enables us to create a proper environment without sacrificing elegance, as those starred restaurants or internet-famous restaurants. Although we can’t take the hard and soft furniture from a star-rated restaurant with us, with brilliant restaurant lighting design ideas, you can “transfer” the lighting to our own bar or restaurant and bring flair into your house with smart lighting’s rich scene modes. What kind of lighting do restaurants and bars have? Let’s build a private dining bar where we can enjoy the experience of a star-rated restaurant or bar in the comfort of our own home.
Decoding Star-Rated Restaurant’s Lighting Design
Using Gorgeous Chandeliers in a Smart Way
A restaurant is a place where people come to eat, and the lighting should highlight the table, the food, and the surroundings. This is especially important in fine dining establishments.
If a restaurant serves Western cuisine, the lighting will reflect that, as would the decorating flair. The lighting design in Fig. 5.3.2, for example, illustrates the aesthetic of a high-end restaurant, which typically utilizes concealed lighting, which conceals the light strip within the circle above the light track or in the ceiling. For the most part, however, the dominant light over a dining table will be provided by a beautiful chandelier acting as flood lighting. This creates a welcoming dining and conversation setting while also addressing the space’s aesthetic demands.
Fig. 1 Lighting design of a high-end restaurant (Image source: Pexels)
Depicted in Fig. 1, is a typical lighting design of high-end Western restaurants. Western restaurants feature a few practical lighting fixtures but are highly effective at generating ambiance with a range of ornamental fixtures. In addition, Western restaurants are also clever in employing colored light to create character.
Fig. 2 Upscale Western restaurant lighting design (Image source: Pexels)
When picking a beautiful chandelier, the designer will take the dining table’s length into account to avoid having the dining lights shine in unison. Chandelier installation requires consideration of the distance between the fixture and the dining table. Eye strain can be caused by a chandelier that’s too near to the dining room table. Chandeliers may be categorized as follows based on how light is split, as illustrated in Fig. 5.3.4: all-round diffusion, shading lamp covers, transparent lamps covers, and linear lamps. As an added bonus, multiple chandelier combinations are set up in different ways to offer people a different vibe (Fig. 3). While you may utilize spotlights to create a star hotel eating experience if the restaurant has a picturesque background or decorative painting. After all, good background lighting can boost appetite.
All-round diffusion type
Large luminous surface, no glare
Shading lamp covers
Transparent lamp cover
Large luminous surface, easy on eyes
Long light has a minimalist and modern feeling to it
Fig. 3 This diagram shows how to arrange many chandeliers in various configurations.
Light that Makes Food Taste Better
Color, flavor, taste and form are all important for a dish, with “color” taking precedence. If exposed to cool light, i.e. high color temperature light, it will directly affect the “color” of the dish and therefore the appetite. For this reason, the majority of restaurants use warm light sources (Fig. 4). Typically, high-end restaurants will choose luminaires with a color rendering index Ra ≥ 90. As shown in Fig. 5, the higher the color rendering index, the more realistic your food will look when viewed in artificial light, enhancing your eating experience.
Fig. 4 Food under warm light and cool light
Fig. 5 Food under high color rendering index and low color rendering index
Create a Bar Vibe with Colored Lights
The bar is a vital aspect of the restaurant scene, and it’s where the party begins. What considerations go into the lighting design of a bar? Fig. 6 shows an example of a bar.
To begin with, a floodlight over the bar illuminates the space. This is supplemented by a hanging pendant light. Using wall washing RGB color light and colored lights identifying the edge of the bar, the lighting design aims to generate ambiance.
Fig. 6 Bar lighting design (Image source: Pexels)
The Secret to Replicating the Lighting Design of a Fancy Restaurant
Dining Scenario: Enjoying a Meal with the Loved Ones
The smart lighting design of the restaurant must first meet the daily dining needs: three meals a day with family and friends. Therefore, the overall lighting atmosphere of the restaurant should have a cozy and pleasant feel to it so that families can enjoy their meals without feeling rushed or stressed. Fig. 7shows the lighting impact of a high-end restaurant employing spotlights and light strips to enhance the ceiling, taking Chinese customs into consideration. Installing high quality, high color rendering index chandeliers above the dining table will evenly light up the tabletop and make the food look more appetizing.
Colour temperature: 3000K spotlight/pendant/light strip
Brightness:100% spotlight/pendant/light strip
Fig. 7Lighting effects and pseudo illumination color chart of dining mode
Romantic mode: enjoy the romance of the Western restaurant
Why do restaurants dim light? If a couple wants to enjoy a romantic candlelight dinner or Western dinner at home, you can learn from the lighting design of the Western restaurant environment. Lower the overall restaurant ambient light (dim or turn off spotlights) and tune the chandelier above the dining table to a lower color temperature, the ceiling of the colored light strip can be adjusted to romantic purple to spice up the atmosphere (see Fig. 8).
Color temperature: 2700K chandelier
Color: purple light strip
Brightness: 75% chandelier/ light strip
Fig. 8 Lighting effects and pseudo illumination color chart of romantic mode
Bar Mode: How Can I Turn My Dining Room into A Hipster Hangout?
Color temperature: 2700K pendant light
Colour: purple, orange light strip and spotlight
Brightness:75% pendant/spotlight/light strip
Fig. 9 Lighting effects and pseudo illumination color chart of bar mode
An Easy Guide to Create a Star-Rated Home Dining Bar
Step 1: Designing the Lighting Layout
Lights in the dining room, as shown in the Fig.10, use a variety of luminaire types such as spotlights, strips, and pendants. Despite the limited number of lighting options, the rational lighting pattern and adjustable function of the smart lighting make it simple to produce various dining modes.
Fig.10 Lighting layout in a dining room
Step 2: Purchase Luminaires
Fig.11 provides purchase suggestions for dining room luminaires based on the luminaire configuration shown in Fig.10
Step 3: Set the Lighting Mode and Smart Linkage Mode
To achieve three distinct lighting effects in a restaurant, as in eating mode, romance mode, and bar mode, suitable lighting standards must be established. The smart home system or voice control can then be used to manually activate the mode. Various modes can be switched using standard voice control instructions.
1. Connect your gadget to your smart home automation system.
Connect the lamp and speaker to your smart home’s automation system by following the product’s instructions.
2. Arrange the luminaires in a pleasing pattern.
Group the dining room and kitchen spotlights, as well as the ceiling light strips, so that all of the light fixtures in those areas may be managed as a unit. Each of the other luminaires is separately regulated.
3. Add voice commands and lighting control modes to the system.
Open the Xiao Ai App and enable training as shown in Fig.12to see an example of Xiaomi smart speaker settings. To begin with, customize the voice control by adding commands such as “I’m going to eat,” “Start western dining mode,” and “Start bar mode”. After that, include control protocols in your device. The lights can be set to different modes based on the spoken instructions that are issued to the voice speaker.
Fig.12 Voice control commands for “dining mode”, “romance mode” and “bar mode” and rules for controlling the lights (Image source: Xiao Ai App)