Lighting plays two roles in interior design. Firstly, it provides a space with necessary illumination, and secondly, it brings a certain ambience to a space. In my lighting design, the emphasis has always been achieving a balance between the two. Lighting in restaurants should be quite different from that in private homes since the essence of restaurant lighting just lies in its difference from ordinary home lighting.

Lighting plays two roles in interior design

Before stepping into a restaurant, a customer would have a rough glimpse of the interior space first; as he walks in, cross different areas to find a dining table, takes his seat, make the order and casually chat with his partners, he would have a detailed observation of the space. Throughout the whole process, I strive for creating some dramatic and narrative effects, which are to be completed by careful lighting. Food is definitely a dominating component of a restaurant.

Appropriate use of lighting could make the dishes more tempting. In addition, steps should be highlighted by lighting to avoid injuries. Such functional lighting should never be neglected. Different areas in a restaurant, such as kitchen, lobby, bar, and VIP room, should be treated differently in terms of lighting. In kitchens, raw food materials are to be treated by cooks. Lighting should be helpful for them to determine the quality of the material. Therefore, brightness is always the key element.

However, we have open kitchen and bar in modern restaurants, where customers are quite close to such areas. The bright lighting should not be annoying for their dining experience. It is recommended to make the intense lighting concentrate on the hands of the cook or adopt indirect lighting. In restaurant lobbies where dining tables are densely laid, multi-source lighting would not be a good solution because too many lighting sources would make the dining tables conspicuous, while customers, even dining in lobbies, would not like his their tables to become a focus.

In order to create private dining experience, there should never be too many scattering lighting sources. On the contrary, I would particularly set focal lighting in particular areas to create certain characteristics for a space. Customers would easily find them when they glance at the surroundings unconsciously. When I want customers to feel “cool”, I would use narrow halogen lighting to produce a cold and rigid atmosphere. When I want them to feel “tender”, I prefer indirect lighting and the amount of lighting source would be determined according to the impression of the space.

Lighting Design in Commercial Spaces Powder rooms are where beautiful ladies find themselves charming in mirrors. Therefore, soft lighting helpful for an overall pleasant effect is recommended. In my view, a good lighting design should combine aesthetic value and functional practicality. For commercial interiors, firstly, lighting should help distinguish different areas; secondly, if the lighting design could further convey a spirit or tell a story, it would become one of the most dramatic elements in commercial interior design.