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The role of lighting in immersive dining

Author: Richard Bevan
Published: September 4, 2017

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The immersive dining trend has become incredibly popular in recent years, with a growing number of restaurants now offering quirky dining experiences as a way of attracting adventurous diners. By combining great food with unusual atmospheres, immersive dining is a way for restaurants to show off their creativity and offer something truly unique to their patrons. Sight, smell, sound, and of course food, all play an essential role in the immersive dining experience, but within this article we’ll be looking at some great examples of innovating lighting.

Examples of lighting being used in immersive dining

    • Dans le Noir? (translation: In the Dark?) is a restaurant chain that plays with lighting to the extreme. This immersive experience has diners sitting in complete darkness throughout the duration of their meal in an attempt to heighten other senses. The concept aims to challenge the guests’ preconceptions and allow for a different type of interaction - both with each other and with the food.

Via www.facebook.com/DansLeNoirLondon

    • Trendy Amsterdam-based Bar Botanique Cafe Tropique is filled with tropical plants and botanical green textures to mimic the look and feel of a rainforest. The green walls, floors and ceilings are adorned with clusters of palm trees and ferns, and reflective discs hang from the ceiling to bounce light around the room. During the day, full-height windows allow natural light to flood into the space, creating shadows and a sense of being outdoors. When the sun sets, spotlights directed at ceiling mirrors create interesting textures on walls and ceilings.

Via @barbotaniqueamsterdam

    • Ultraviolet in Shanghai marries food with multi-sensorial technology in order to create a fully immersive experience for its diners. The walls are fitted with projection screens, and lights combine with sounds, scents, and cooling breeze to provide a truly unique experience for diners throughout their 20 course set menu. Check out their Instagram for some seriously cool lighting inspiration.

Via @uvbypp

Practical yet magical

Lighting has always been integral to interior design; its presence or absence can completely make or break a space, no matter how amazing the interior design looks. In 2017, this has become even more true for those venues that are inviting guests to fully unwind and engage with a multi-sensory experience. For restaurant and bar owners, immersive dining is a key trend to watch throughout the latter part of this year and beyond.