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Restaurant Lighting: How to Master It Like a Pro

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When restaurants, cafes and other foodservice spaces are designed, the focus is on creating the perfect ambience that sets a pleasing mood and adds to the dining experience. That’s why great lighting is a must-have for every restaurant’s overall design aesthetics to provide a relaxing atmosphere to guests and entice them to come back. But how do you know what kind of lighting is right for your food business and how much should be the intensity of light so that the guests can read the menu? We understand it can be intimidating.  Read this blog post by lighting wholesalers to learn how to choose an attractive lighting design for your restaurant and what are the best ways to incorporate them.

Restaurant Lighting Ideas that Inspire

Main Types of Lighting in Restaurants

To master restaurant lighting design, you should first understand what kinds of lights are used in restaurants. Similar to other spaces, restaurants also have three main types of lighting, ambient, task and accent. Here’s the purpose of each type in a fine-dining eatery.

  • Ambient Lighting- This is the main source of light. It can either be an overhead fixture or the natural light coming from the windows. Its function is to provide illumination for people to see and move around easily and comfortably.
  • Task Lighting- As the name suggests, this light is for a specific task. For example, a table lamp on the reception area, pendant lights on the table for guests to read the menu and undercabinet lights in the kitchen for cooking.
  • Accent Lighting- This type of light is used to add drama, create a focal point and highlight menu boards or artwork. Colourful accent lighting can also be used behind a bar to accentuate this section of a restaurant.

Important Factors to Consider

Here are the essential factors that have a major role to play in defining the overall functionality of your lighting design.

  • The colour scheme of your eatery’s interior design
  • The atmosphere you want to create
  • The type of food you will serve
  • The restaurant’s hours of operation

These factors are crucial because if you want to decorate a fine-dining restaurant, the light fixtures should feature a sophisticated look producing soft light and complement the colour scheme as well. Also, the intensity of task light depends on the type of food you serve and at what time of the day you get maximum rush. For example, for choosing lights depending on the type of cuisine served, consider whether you want the diners to take their time or eat quickly to make room for other diners. Having said that, if you generate most of your sales during the morning rush, go for bright wake up lights for customers to read their newspapers and enjoy coffee. On the contrary, if your establishment makes most of its sale during dinner service, select lights that create a romantic feel.


Chandeliers Track Lighting
Wall Lamps Recessed Lighting
Pendant LightsCeiling Fans

Inspiring Ways to Incorporate Restaurant Lighting

Once you have understood the kinds of lighting to be used and considered the essential factors, it is time to incorporate the lights. Here are the best ways to do it.

  • Choose Pendants to Add Practicality

Pedants are favourites for restaurant lighting. Position these easy to install fixtures as task lighting over tables, countertops, host areas or bars. They will not only accentuate your establishment’s interior design but also add to its functionality by making it simple to read the menu or look at what’s been served.

  • Welcome the Guests with Chandeliers

If your restaurant is designed for romantic candlelight dinners and relaxing evenings with elegant décor, chandeliers are your best bet. These shimmering lighting fixtures in your entrance will greet the guests with their beauty, create a focal point and enhance the overall appeal of your eatery.

  • Use Track Lighting for Targeted Effect

Track lights are multiple fixtures attached on a continuous track. They are perfect to provide direct lighting in different directions and guide guests where to go and where to find what. They’ll help you create an attractive ceiling which is both functional and appealing.

  • Utilize Wall Space with Accent Lights

Apart from installing fixtures to bring practicality, layering lights with accent luminaries is essential to outline the decorative features of a restaurant. Using accent lights such as designer wall sconces and flush mounts will add to the beauty of your establishment and make it look more spacious.

Choosing the right restaurant lighting might seem like an overwhelming task. But it is crucial for the success of your business. After all, your restaurant’s ambience, aesthetics, practicality and customer retention rate depend on how well-lit your establishment is. Use this blog post by lighting wholesalers as a guide to master restaurant lighting like a pro and illuminate your business space while taking all essential aspects into account.

jessicaarnold Jessaica is a professional blog writer on future technology and business strategy for SMBs.
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