Dreaming about opening your own café? You may want to know which type of café best suits your interests and preferences. There are many different types of cafés and knowing your target demographic will help you choose the right design for you. Couple that with a great-tasting menu, a relaxing ambience, and a unique theme, and now you have the recipe for a successful café.
The key is to make a guideline of proven design interventions. From there, you can make adjustments to make your café truly stand out. To help you make an informed decision, we’ve narrowed down the most common café designs today. Take inspiration from these designs and mould it according to your liking.
- Café Bakery
A café bakery is like a fancier bakeshop where the focus is on pastries, desserts, and bread. These cafés are quite boutique and are a far cry from your typical coffee house. Since the main attractions are the baked goods, the interior design revolves around display shelves. Standard display shelves can be bought and used, but there are also customised ones to make your café look unique.
The goal here is to highlight your baked goods. The more pastries, bread, and cookies that are visible, the more customers you’ll be able to attract. Most café bakeries have a small baking nook where patrons can view the actual baking process. Some even have brick ovens to market their specialty like pizza which draws even more attention from customers.
This transparency helps establish customer trust and gives them the impression that your baked goods are freshly made. As for the rest of the interior design, a contemporary aesthetic should serve a bakery-style café quite well. Warm lights, comfortable furniture sets, and relaxing music all set the stage for a cozy atmosphere that your customers will love.
- Student café
Student cafés are a recent trend in the coffee house industry. These establishments are run entirely by students who wish to develop their business skills. Such cafés are often mobile and temporary, allowing them to operate in different locations at any given time. The great thing about a student café is that the interior design can be as minimalist as you’d like. You can carry out the design in affordable ways which are perfect if you’re just starting with a small budget.
Student cafés rely on curb appeal to attract customers. While the design theme can be simple and straightforward, it should be centred around activities that cater to your potential patrons. For example, the seating can be arranged in a way that allows public forum participation or even group studying.
- Co-Working Café
A co-working café is by far the most common type of coffee house in our contemporary world. With the rise of freelancing and self-employment, a co-working café provides a workplace-type ambience that allows patrons to enjoy their coffee while getting work done. The interior design revolves around a table/desk, power outlets, and free wifi. These amenities cater to the needs of on-the-go professionals, students, and home-based workers which are the primary audience of a co-working café.
The overall design concept leans toward the quiet and understated side — two things that repel loud patrons and children. This helps to promote a business-oriented atmosphere where customers can focus on their tasks and feel comfortable while working. Great lighting is an absolute must in a co-working café as this helps maintain a dynamic ambience within the establishment.
Most co-working cafés have a limited menu that’s quick and easy to prepare. One tip: make sure the sound of whirring espresso is out of range or else, your customers may be put off by it.
- Parisian Café
Parisian cafés originated from France where it was born out of the idea that a coffee house can serve as a culinary and conversation hub. These cafés are more on the upscale side of things as they typically feature full-scale kitchens and a restaurant-style menu. Some even have a full bar with modest wine selections, thus offering a unique dining experience that other coffee houses simply cannot match.
Many Parisian cafés still exist and while mimicking their history can be quite difficult, taking inspiration from their concept isn’t. Ornate designs decorate the interior along with plush furniture and pastel colour schemes. Since your target demographic is very upscale and exclusive, you want to create a classy ambience to suit their expensive tastes.
- Sidewalk Café
Sidewalk cafés are unique in that they’re positioned right along a public sidewalk. Furniture and landscaping are two of the main attractions in a sidewalk café such as the elaborately designed tabled and lush, vibrant greenery. Most sidewalk cafés use large umbrellas to accommodate patrons whether it’s sunny or rainy.
The main thing to keep in mind with a sidewalk café is that it is very quaint and charming. Therefore, this sentiment should reflect in the interior as well. Warm colours, green design elements, and large windows are a great choice for the overall design. This helps create a homey and relaxing atmosphere that allows your customers to enjoy their coffee outdoors.