Restaurants are designed to create a specific experience for diners. A great deal of thought goes into the menu and interior décor of a restaurant, but acoustics play an equally important role in the overall quality of a restaurant experience. Patrons want to hear one another and enjoy the social element of dining out, as well as the food. How can restaurant owners effectively manage the acoustics of their space?
Restaurants are inherently noisy places and restaurant noise reduction is a major concern for many restaurateurs. They are filled with the sound of people talking and laughing, music, clinking glasses, scraping cutlery, and busy staff members. Restaurants are sometimes designed with an aesthetic that results in poor acoustic management. Exposed brick walls and high industrial ceilings are striking, but they create a noisy and potentially disruptive atmosphere.
Restaurants do not need to compromise on aesthetics to create a better acoustic experience. Instead, restaurateurs can turn to effective acoustic solutions, including baffles, panels, and curtains.
Acoustic baffles are one the most versatile options for restaurants because they can be made with a variety of different materials and colors. Hung from the ceiling or strategically placed on different walls, baffles do not have to interfere with a restaurant’s visual aesthetics. They can match the color scheme and offer an unobtrusive solution to common acoustic challenges.
Acoustics Solution Applications
Here are four different ways restaurants can effectively use acoustic management solutions to achieve restaurant noise reduction.
• The main space. The main dining room (or rooms) is the most important part of customer experience. Ceiling baffles can trap and reduce sound between the dining room’s ceiling and the baffle. Convex wall baffles have a curved surface that provides a large surface area for absorbing sound from multiple angles, which is helpful in a large, noise-filled restaurant. Flat wall baffles are a good tool for reducing the echo of multiple conversations, which is a common issue in large, open dining spaces. Free-hanging baffles offer a flexible solution to acoustics management because they can be hung close to various sources of noise, such as the entrance to the kitchen.
• Private event rooms. Large restaurants often have private event rooms for large parties, such as rehearsal dinners, birthdays, and graduation celebrations. Patrons paying for a private experience do not want to be bothered by the noise from the main dining room. Likewise, the sound of private events should not escape out into the rest of the restaurant. Baffles can be used in these spaces, just as they are employed in the main dining room. Additionally, acoustic panels, a stationary option, can line the walls of a private event room to completely contain sound. Panels can even be covered with different types of fabric to match the aesthetics of the room.
• The kitchen. Kitchen restaurants are extremely busy and loud. Chefs are preparing multiple meals at once, and staff members are constantly in and out of the area. Properly managing acoustics here helps protect employees from excessive noise and ensures diners are not disturbed by the sound of their food being prepared. Restaurant kitchens can benefit from acoustic curtains can hang on mounted track to help make the kitchen into an acoustic enclosure. The curtains can also be configured with window panels and door cut outs for easy staff access.
• Administrative areas. Much of the restaurant business goes on behind the scenes. Owners often conduct administrative work on-site in an office, but the noise of the dining area and kitchen can be a distraction. Acoustic panels and curtains can be used in the office to dampen noise from the rest of the restaurant.
If you are opening a new restaurant or looking for ways to manage the sound of an existing restaurant, acoustic solutions are a useful tool. Learn more about the different options that could work in your space and get a quote.