In a 2012 study by Cornell University, researchers found that people who dine in relaxed environments—places that employ mellow music and soft lighting—feel more satisfied with the quality of the food that they eat. Because of this, they become more inclined to stay longer and are more likely to revisit that environment.

Light can also affect how people taste their food. Take wine for example. According to a survey conducted by researchers at the Institute of Psychology at the Johannes Gutenberg-University of Mainz in Germany, lighting can affect how individuals taste wine. Subjects rated their wine higher in blue and red light, while the same wine got lower ratings in green and white light from another set of subjects. Wine under blue and red light was also described as sweeter and fruitier.

Lighting has a lot of non-image-forming effects on the human body, which can impact the way people interact with objects in the environment, including food. Depending on the lighting in the area, a meal can become satisfying at best, and forgettable at worst.

That’s why, for restaurants to be able to provide the best dining experience for patrons, the appropriate lighting must be employed.

Customer Satisfaction

Improving customer satisfaction is one way for restaurants to increase the number of its patrons and, more importantly, its revenue. Diners will either come out of a restaurant satisfied or displeased, with satisfied customers more likely to dine again or recommend the restaurant to friends. Customer satisfaction must be a priority in order to achieve this.

In this regard, it’s usually the food and the service that are given focus by restaurant owners and managers. They hire the best kitchen staff, formulate the best menus and provide speedy service, among others tactics, to achieve this goal.

But these tactics should not be the only points of focus; appropriate lighting is equally important for customer satisfaction.

Appropriate lighting

A perfect mix of ambient, task and accent lighting can boost the ambiance of a restaurant, providing a better dining experience for customers:

  1. Ambient lighting – this sets the background lighting for the establishment. It also provides illumination so that patrons and staff can traverse the area properly.
  2. Accent lighting – the purpose of accent lighting is to highlight the restaurant’s interiors and decorations such as art and furnishings, which all contribute to the theme or feel of the restaurant.
  3. Task lighting – task lighting provides illumination for specific activities on tables, such as when looking at the menu and consuming food. Task lighting is typically directional, which maximises task illumination without greatly affecting ambient and accent lighting.

Additionally, lighting must also have the right intensity depending on what type of food and service a restaurant provides.

Bright, colourful lighting is perfect for quick-service restaurants that serve inexpensive food and accommodate a lot of activity and noise. For full-service restaurants, those that serve gourmet and want to evoke a romantic or relaxed atmosphere, lighting should be softer and a bit dimmer.

LED lighting for restaurants

When it comes to restaurant lighting, the best option is light-emitting diode (LED) technology. With its versatility, achieving the best lighting conditions for your restaurant becomes easier. Choosing LED over traditional lighting technologies, like incandescent bulbs and fluorescent lamps, can provide a lot of benefits, including:

  • Low-energy consumption – LED is known to consume up to 60 percent less power than conventional lighting, which also means reduced costs.
  • Long-lasting – LED lighting lasts up to 5 times longer than conventional lighting technologies. The lumen quality is also relatively consistent from first start to finish.
  • Versatility – LED is versatile and comes in different colours and sizes, which means it can fulfil different lighting needs. Light in LEDs can also be dimmed to help achieve a soft-glow effect.

Interested in making the switch to LED for your business? Choose Matrix LED! We offer products and solutions that can meet different needs in the hospitality industry, including restaurants and hotels.

To know more about or products and solutions on offer, visit MatrixLED. You can also contact us and schedule a free consultation today, or calculate how much money and energy you can save by using our savings calculator.

Matrix LED Light Savings Calculator

July 26, 2016

How the right lighting can benefit your restaurant

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