Outlook: October - Food halls, budgeting for creativity, and Gaudi.
Each month a member of The McBride Company team shares their perspective on trends, what they find interesting and personal inspiration. For our October 2019 post, we are joined by Marisa, one of our highly talented Architectural Designers whose work includes conceptualization and design for clients such as Margaritaville, Great Wolf Lodge, and Nickelodeon.
What are you seeing a lot of this month?
I keep seeing more and more social media photo-ops that are built into the design or experience of a space. They are becoming a huge thing, a must-have component for so many of our clients. Even higher-end, modern restaurants are integrating these instragammable moments. There is a wonderful sushi and poke place near my home--excellent boba tea as well--with a very simple, but effective wall design that doubles as an Instagram photo-op.
And of course, we have built some of these ourselves--the Fins Up wall at Landshark Bar & Grill and the beer keg scooter.
Speaking of food, I am a supporter and patron of the new food hall movement which is a welcome evolution of the old food court model. The Packing House in Anaheim has healthy and tasty options as well as a unique design aesthetic that makes all the food outlets feel like part of a cohesive space.
I am really interested to see how this trend in food halls affects the industry--think fine dining, chef-driven and even, yes, the old food court. I think we will see chef-driven restaurants in smaller spaces with more interchangeability between chefs, cuisine, and ingredients. For food courts, I see more opportunities. The retail space is there and it reminds me of the food truck and pop-up movement of 5 and 10 years ago. We are starting to see chefs like Rick Bayless and big retailers like Harrods experimenting with these ideas.
What is a big, but unseen opportunity for clients and developers?
For me, I think it is balancing creativity and budget. Whether the budget is large or small, there is always an opportunity for creative design. We are a team that thinks a lot about budget and viability as well as customer experience and brand, but I believe you can find better solutions--and often more creative ones--when you let your design imagination take the lead.
Let’s keep potential in the conversation as long as possible.
What is interesting to you right now?
Off-roading and the whole overlanding experience. The concept of being able to fit life’s essentials in a vehicle and essentially go anywhere you want. I love to travel, the outdoors and my car and offroading combine all those experiences. Plus it is a fun challenge creating transitional spaces that can store easily in the back of a Jeep.
What store could you live in? (It’s doesn’t have to have all of the items to survive in it.)
Oh, easy, Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World. I went into one for the first time this year, I loved the over-the-top theming of the place. It is a nice bonus that they do have all the supplies I would need, plus a lot of tents.
What is the most inspiring place you have ever been to?
The Sagrada Familia in Spain. It is such an impressive building. It is just an example of someone not limiting their design to what buildings are capable of. Gaudi knew it was going to take years but did not cater to technology, or expectations or budgets.