One of the best ways to drive up income for any business in the hospitality industry is to expand the range of services on offer. Hotel kitchens do just this. Having an on-brand and accessible restaurant for guests to enjoy encourages them to stay on-site and spend their money internally. Providing room service offerings give guests flexibility with their dining habits and improves the availability of services overall. To do all of these things, you need to have the right structure in place and that takes place in the form of a well-designed hotel kitchen. Planning and designing these functional, complex and demanding environments is anything but easy. This is why we always recommend having the support of a professional and experienced team on your side to assist. But, while you’re in the research stages or beginning to plan your budget, we’ve pulled together this guide to help.
Why Is Hotel Kitchen Design Important?
As we mentioned above, a well-designed and functional hotel kitchen will bring in much-needed income for many businesses. It helps to create a streamlined production line for all meals and improves the overall working experience for employees. A well-structured space will help you to:
- Improve Cost-efficiency – The more orders you can get out to your guests on time, the more people you can serve. Equally, good service intrinsically links to a good brand reputation which increases the chance of repeat customers and more diners through your doors.
- Creates Order – Well organised kitchens allow your team to work at optimal efficiency. They provide a space that works in accordance with UK regulations and legislations and one where every process can be carried out smoothly.
- Reduces Accident Risk – Overcrowded kitchens, cramped walkways and limited surface areas significantly increase the chance of injury – especially in these hot and humid environments. A well-designed kitchen looks to eliminate this by providing a custom-designed space.
- Attracts the Best Talent – The very best chefs need an environment that works with their cooking style. If you aim to drive additional footfall through the door, the name of a reputable chef and a team of reliable assistants is gold. Well-designed kitchens will facilitate their needs making it more appealing to potential applicants and giving them a room to turn their visions into a reality.
Working with the right professionals, as we mentioned above, is the best way to ensure all areas are covered. But here are some key considerations you’ll want to take into account.
How To Calculate The Right Size
Calculating the necessary size for a new hotel kitchen is incredibly important. Some hotels will be restricted to available space within their existing buildings while others will have the capacity for expansion. You’ll need to consider factors such as how big will the kitchen need to be to satisfy the number of guests or additional diners you expect? You need a kitchen that can accommodate the number of seats you plan to have available whilst considering how frequently you plan to turn tables.
Ensuring Good Manoeuvrability
Kitchens are innately hazardous environments. There is a lot of heat, humidity and potential for trip hazards as standard. Your new commercial kitchen design needs to take this into account and ensure it accommodates for manoeuvrability. Every chef and employee needs to be able to work safely and ergonomically. Good kitchen design dictates that they should need to take the least number of steps to perform each of their tasks, whether it is food preparation, presentation or more. An ergonomic kitchen will work to reduce the amount of movement needed, cut down on time wasted and prevent injuries at the same time.
This can all be done by ensuring walkways are adequate, that there is enough storage, that appliances are appropriately positioned and that each dedicated workstation is equipped for the desired user.
What Equipment Will You Need?
There is a magnitude of professional kitchen equipment available on the market for commercial kitchens. The best type for you will meet your budget, practical needs and dependency on new technology. This should be where you invest the bulk of your money. After all, a hotel kitchen is only as good as the food it can produce. Investing in quality equipment will reduce the risk of repairs in the future – especially if you establish a good repair and maintenance schedule. You will need to research and consider:
- Cooking Equipment.
- Warewashing Equipment.
- Food Preparation Equipment.
- Refrigeration and Freezing Equipment.
- Storage Solutions.
Finding the best catering equipment for your needs can be daunting. We recommend considering the following aspects:
- Available Budget – Make sure you set a budget and stick to it. Commercial kitchen design can be expensive and you can end up spending a significant percentage of this on equipment.
- Plan Your Menu – One of the most comprehensive ways to choose equipment is to understand what types of foods and cooking methods you’re going to need. If you already have a chef and/or a menu, start here. If not, consider the type of cuisine you plan on offering and work from there.
- Measure Your Kitchen – A good understanding of the size you’re working with will help to indicate what types of equipment will be suitable.
Adequate ventilation for commercial kitchens is built into Building Regulations here in the UK. The HSE recommends mechanical extraction systems that are able to reduce internal heat and draw away steam, grease and fume particles. The right set-up will remove begrimed air and also help to create a more appealing working environment. You have two main options – buying off-the-shelf or bespoke. Off-the-shelf options will be more cost-effective but will be limited in their ability to adequately serve specific environments. Bespoke kitchen ventilation canopies are site-specific and meet the needs of your kitchen entirely. They can be built with odour control and silencers that reduce your impact on the environment too.
A well-designed commercial hotel kitchen can improve your business in a multitude of ways. At Aspen Services, we have over 100 combined years of experience in the kitchen industry and have grown our commercial kitchen design service to fit the needs of many different environments. If you would like more advice and information about designing the right hotel kitchen for your needs, please do get in contact here today.