Southwark architect cafe interior design - proposed 3D render in a sketch style

The design of a restaurant plays a crucial role in shaping the dining experience. What value does an architect-designed restaurant bring?

Selecting an architecture firm to design your restaurant is ideal for those wanting a unique and bespoke offering. An architect-designed restaurant that can compete for design awards and recognition outside the food offering.

Architects are often critical when working on restaurants in London, as these are often part of historic or listed buildings where sensitive changes need to be made, and planning applications need to be submitted.


Discover Architecture for London’s restaurant projects. If you would like to discuss your project please contact us.


Restaurant architecture considerations

Restaurant architects can bring an array of skills and experience, both design and technical.

Key considerations include:

  • Functional layout
  • Aesthetic appeal
  • Customer experience
  • Building regulations
  • Technical kitchen design
  • Sustainability

Role of architects in restaurant design

Sometimes architects are not considered for restaurant design, as it is viewed as the role of an interior designer. However, many architects, such as Architecture for London, offer both architectural and interior design services for restaurant owners.

Working with an architect on your restaurant may include a full service; this means your architect is involved throughout the whole process, typically following the RIBA Work Stages. Your architect may offer interior design services, or you may work with a separate designer in addition to the architect.

Architectural restaurant examples

Notable architect-designed restaurants include the Hotel Café Royal by David Chipperfield, Noma by David Thulstrup and the Four Seasons by Mies van der Rohe.

restaurant architect dining table

Sustainable hospitality and restaurant design

Like homeowners who value living in sustainable homes, when travelling increasing number of people value sustainability in their restaurant and hospitality experiences. The restaurant might be offering locally sourced food, but how far did the chairs and tables have to travel?

Working with a sustainability-focused architect, such as Architecture for London, can ensure sustainable materials and furniture are selected for the interior.

Architect’s fees for a restaurant

The architectural fee will vary depending on the services required. The architect may take on the lead-consultant role during the project and coordinate other specialist input, such as building control and services engineers.

Timescales may be a significant factor in your project; each day the restaurant is open has a financial impact. Your architect may be able to deliver a faster service which can impact on the fee required.

However, the restaurant owner may have experience and an existing team who can take on a lead role and require the architect to work on design and planning.

The fees for a moderate-sized restaurant with full architectural services could be based on 8-14% of the construction budget, excluding VAT.


Discover Architecture for London’s restaurant projects. If you would like to discuss your project please contact us.