planning food services spaces in a museum environment
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Planning Food Services Spaces in a Museum Environment . Benefits of Food Service. Is an expected amenity Can increase length of stay Can positively impact gift shop sales and membership Employee/volunteer convenience and morale Events can introduce individuals to the facility

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benefits of food service
Benefits of Food Service
  • Is an expected amenity
  • Can increase length of stay
  • Can positively impact gift shop sales and membership
  • Employee/volunteer convenience and morale
  • Events can introduce individuals to the facility
  • Can generate significant earned income
visitor food service
Visitor Food Service
  • May be a café, restaurant, or kiosk, or a combination thereof
  • Serves museum visitor, employees, and potentially outside patrons
external third party catering
External (Third Party Catering)
  • Food and beverage supplied to groups of diners in conjunction with an event
  • Frequently occurs when the facility is closed to the public
  • Is generally the economic driver of the food service equation
planning visitor food service
Planning Visitor Food Service
  • Level of service (kiosk, café, restaurant) is frequently dictated by annual attendance
  • A museum with attendance of less than 50,000 may get by with a kiosk or small coffee bar
  • A museum with attendance of 1.5 million will likely have several outlets with different price points
factors that impact demand
Factors that Impact Demand
  • Length of Stay
  • Presence of Children
  • School Groups
  • Good Wayfinding Signage
  • Competitive Establishments
  • Ease of Re-entry
  • Member and Employee Discounts
production methods
Production Methods
  • Commissary Support
  • Full Cooking or Production Kitchen
  • Catering Pantry – different from a Café Production Kitchen
  • Production may be different for visitor food service and catered events
factors influencing production choice
Factors Influencing Production Choice
  • Space Availability – if space is limited a commissary support approach might be best
  • Menu Concept – a menu with grilled or fried items will require a full production kitchen
  • Operating Hours – an operation serving dinner or seeking to be a destination will likely need a full production kitchen onsite
  • Catering Community – is commissary support approach supportable
caf size seating capacity
Café Size (Seating Capacity)
  • Visitation is frequently seasonal, weekend oriented, or exhibit driven
  • Size to average (non blockbuster) peak day
  • Determine average number of visitors arriving from 10 am to 1 pm
  • Consider outside visitors and museum employees
caf size seating capacity10
Café Size (Seating Capacity)
  • If peak attendance is 3,000 visitors with 50% arriving between 10 am and 1 pm assume 15% - 30% of the 1,500 visitors will dine for lunch in the facility
  • This translates to 225 – 450 diners which requires seating capacity of 75 -150 (three turns for a café)
  • Assume 12 – 15 square feet per person for seating depending on local fire code
space requirements kiosk
Space Requirements - Kiosk
  • Limited to kiosk space and some storage
  • Average kiosk 10 – 12 feet long and requires 6 feet of depth
  • 60 – 100 square feet with electrical access is generally sufficient
  • Dry and refrigerated storage and hand washing sink are required nearby
  • No food is prepared on site
space requirements small cafe
Space Requirements – Small Cafe
  • Small café with front serving counter and back service counter could measure 20 feet long with 10 foot depth = 200 square feet
  • Assumes primarily ambient temperature items with limited re heating
  • Additional storage of 60 -100 square feet needed
space requirements larger cafe
Space Requirements – Larger Cafe
  • Full service scatter servery (multiple stations) allocate 16 square feet per person front and back of house
  • 6 square feet servery, 5 back of house, 5 storage
  • Café seating 200 would require 5,600 square feet total (3,200 BOH/Servery, 2,400 seating)
support spaces to include
Support Spaces to Include
  • Managers Office
  • Cash Room
  • Secure Liquor Storage
  • Lockers and Changing Rooms
other considerations
Other Considerations
  • Will café or restaurant be located in a free zone?
  • An outside entrance to a free zone café or restaurant can double sales
  • Identify space for school children with bag lunches – do not want them sitting in cafe
additional destination requirements
Additional Destination Requirements
  • A separate dedicated ground floor entrance with street presence (signage)
  • The ability to be open for lunch and dinner and operate independently of museum hours
  • Activity generators in the near vicinity
  • Operator needs full control over the environment (hours, pricing, menu, décor)
sample destination space requirement
Sample Destination Space Requirement
  • Restaurant seating 100 open for lunch and dinner
  • Seating 1,800 square feet
  • Back of House/Kitchen 1,100 square feet
  • Hostess/Bar/Entry 400 square feet
  • Restrooms 200 square feet
  • Office Lockers 200 square feet
  • Total 3,700 square feet
external catering
External Catering
  • Museum generates income from venue fee and percentage of catering food and beverage
  • Includes corporate, social (weddings, bar mitzvahs) and not for profit
  • Each type of event has different space needs
planning considerations
Planning Considerations
  • If event space is dedicated a slightly off the path location that allows early set up is ideal
  • Consider type of events and plan accordingly
  • Social events typically require a separate pre function space
  • Weddings need a small bridal suite with adjacent restroom
  • Conferences need breakout space
space requirements
Space Requirements
  • Cocktail receptions generally require 7 -8 square feet per person depending on fire code
  • Seated dinners generally require 15 square feet per person depending on fire code
  • Sight lines are important for a seated dinner
  • A 3,000 square foot lobby with no permanent exhibitions could accommodate about 400 people for a cocktail reception or 200 for a seated dinner
sizing event spaces
Sizing Event Spaces
  • Research capacities of other cultural institution event spaces
  • Find the hole in the market and size accordingly if possible
  • Sizing to the Museum Gala may not be realistic
support requirements
Support Requirements
  • Most caterers will produce off site
  • Catering pantry requirements are 15-20% of net front of house
  • A 6,000 square foot event space requires a 900 - 1,200 square foot catering pantry
  • Space cannot be laden with equipment
  • Support for each event space should be identified along with transport routes
other considerations26
Other Considerations
  • Identify the serving path and confirm it does not conflict with guest path
  • A busy catering pantry needs two doors (in and out)
  • Ideally restrooms are located in sufficient quantity on the same floor as the event
  • Will the museum purchase tables and chairs? If so allocate 12% of net front of house space
other considerations27
Other Considerations
  • A dedicated event space can significantly increase demand and earned income potential
  • If earned income is important be sure there are appropriate spaces for simultaneous internal and external events (inventory)
  • If the caterer is exclusive and does significant business add a meeting/tasting/conference room
final thoughts for success
Final Thoughts for Success
  • Prepare a feasibility study/business plan before beginning schematic design so the range of possible outcomes is known during planning
  • Gain consensus among stakeholders regarding concept early on
  • Develop institutional policies that support food service goals