Coffee is an essential part of the everyday routine. Whether it is visiting a coffee shop and picking up coffee on the way to work or setting up your work with your laptop, coffee shops are at the center of attraction. Design is a major part of the coffee business. Aside from the brews, ambiance and experience play an integral part in the coffee shop.

The foodservice space type includes cafes, coffee shops, fast food retail, etc., which entails preparation and handling of food items. The foodservice space is distinguished from other spaces where food can be vended by health and sanitation requirements related to the handling of packaging of food products and non-disposable dishware. 

One of the most significant aspects of a successful café or restaurant is the design. Creating a floor plan and designing a café involves knowing every anthropometric variability, the space required for seating a human and movement, the area of the space, optimum utilization of the space, and requirements of the industry. 

Ideally, when it comes to planning and designing a café, 60% of the floor plan should occupy the dining area, and the other 40 % should include the kitchen, storage, etc.

Here are 10 things to consider before designing a coffee shop.

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Open plan design_Sosnov Max

1. Spatial Arrangements

The floor plan must accommodate several articulated areas, each with special equipment and HVAC services. These areas mainly include food production, service, and dining, storage and receiving, space for common circulation, and other support areas. 

These integrated spaces should be well maintained by proper cleaning, health hygiene, and sanitation of all spaces where food is handled. 

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Spacious layout designed for free circulation ©329 Photo Studio

2. Accessibility

The entrance, food service areas, dining areas, and restrooms should generally observe the standard design guidelines. The path of travel around serving stations, counters and seating areas should be designed such that there is enough space for people using wheelchairs and other mobility aids and particularly when chairs are occupied and pulled out. 

Dining areas should include accessible seating for wheelchairs and space for accessibility devices so that they are not in the way. The table-top surface should not be higher than 34 inches from the floor with a free space of 27 inches high underneath. 

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Universally accessible design ©wbdg.org

3. Aesthetics

In general, dining areas include entry, waiting, seating, and structural support which are typically designed for consumer comfort. The aesthetic features include ambient lighting, pleasing colors, artwork, durable furniture, and finishes. 

The aesthetic elements should complement the style of the interior and should make the customer comfortable enough to occupy or move around the space.

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Incorporating a mid-century vibe ©Eirinn Gragson

4. Cost-Effective

Optimizing spaces with an ergonomic design that combines function, efficiency, and design makes it easier for employees to multi-task and work effectively. This might also lead to cost savings without affecting the quality of service. 

The materials, furniture, and furnishings selected should be durable to reduce maintenance and replacement costs.

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Efficient use of materials ©coffeebusiness.com

5. Function

The operational spaces generally include the service areas, food service docks, storage areas, support staff areas, and core service areas including sanitation and HVAC requirements. 

To ensure proper ventilation of spaces, the core provisions need to be placed above the building and separate air handling units should be provided for each space.

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Functionally planned services ©coffeebusiness.com

6. Sustainability

A sustainable plan will include everything from preparing the food to delivering, packaging along with optimal use of food, water, and energy resources in kitchen and dining areas. Using green building materials will create a healthy indoor environment. 

Recycling and efficiency to reduce waste in all areas should be planned accordingly. Natural daylight should be increased wherever possible to reduce energy use that also improves the quality of work and experience.

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A traditional design offering a sustainable way ©Rungkit Charoenwat

7. A Great First Impression

The customer’s first impression after entering the coffee shop is influential and highly important. The feel and look of the coffee shop essentially convey that the business is approachable, desirable, and appealing to the people it serves.

 Part of the aesthetics implies that it is a place to sit down and enjoy. The compatibility of the brand should be such that people can remember the experience they had; cozy and quaint, or vibrant and happening.

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A century-old building turned coffee house ©Andrei Bezuglov

8. The Ideal Layout

The setting out of the coffee shop should be in accordance with the space to efficiently operate and move around the shop. The layout should create a sense of space that would be comfortable and find an optimum balance that will consider both the employees and the customers. 

A coherent traffic pattern is crucial to make everything function effortlessly. An expressive theme and concept will transform the space into a pragmatic layout.

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A basic design of a basic space ©Rungkit Charoenwat

9. The Exterior Spectacle

The exterior elevation of the coffee shop depends on the concept of the design and layout. Designing for comfort will increase the amount of time a person spends in a coffee shop. Apart from the coffee, and a place to work; a coffee shop is a place where people go to feel comfortable and relax. 

The dynamics of the first thing you see and what attracts you to go into the coffee shop are signage and the external view of the place. An open layout, outdoor seating, and the façade of the place determine the appeal of the coffee shop.

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A piece of restaurant era ©Rungkit Charoenwat

10. The Indoor Ideation

How you choose to design the interior of the space is equally important. The theme, the concept, the color scheme, artwork, décor, lighting, display, seating, and even the point of sale should be evident in the design. 

The overall floor space with a minimalistic design or a traditional design can create a certain mood and charm for the place.

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Preserving original features ©Andrei Bezuglov
Author

Abha Haval is an Architect who has a vivid imagination of this world. She believes that every place has a story to tell and is on a mission to photograph the undiscovered whereabouts of various cities and narrate the story of its existence.

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