Trends reshaping dining out

Today, entertainment venues need to also be food and beverage destinations to succeed. Following are some great insights about operating a successful restaurant from an interview that Amir Nahai, AccorHotels' CEO of Group Food & Beverage and Lifestyle Brands, gave Skift Research.

What defines a good restaurant?

“Good restaurants or bars are places where guests choose to return repeatedly. This usually happens when they've had excellent food and service and when the atmosphere feels special. If you don't get those things right, it just comes off as trendy... It's great when someone comes in for the first time, but the important part is to get them to return over and over again.”

Cyclical trends vs. secular trends

“When I started at AccorHotels, I noticed that many people in our industry - general managers and food and beverage directors, for example - would obsess about the very latest fads. As a result, there was an overemphasis on cyclical trends, which was frustrating, given that these change all the time by definition. Conversely, people would not take the time to step back and look at the more profound changes taking place in our industry. I think it's a mistake to base restaurant concepts and offerings on cyclical trends. Instead, we should look at the secular trends that profoundly impact what a dining experience should be and how such experiences might evolve in the future.”

What are some of the secular trends restaurateurs should be paying attention to?

  • Interested: People are “hungrier” and more passionate than ever to explore all things food related.
  • Social: People are highly connected. If you eat something delicious and didn't post it on Instagram, did you really eat it?
  • Informed: Menus and reviews for every hotel and restaurant are literally at our fingertips, creating a more informed consumer.
  • No compromise: Everything has to be awesome, no matter what the place or price point.
  • Healthful: Guests have a more holistic view of health and demand greater transparency.
  • Hurried: Guests want it all, but they want it in less time.
  • Less is more: Simplicity is the new luxury.
  • Convenience: There are more options than ever for eating in your pajamas. Delivery services are reshaping the landscape.