2020 Restaurant Design Trends

This year, we’re embracing crazy color combos, bold pattern play, and references to decades like the ’70s and ’80s.

By GR Chair

Row of Leaf Chairs in restaurant.

Now trending: design that's fun! For 2020, we're all about taking risks and having a bit more fun with design. Think crazy color combos, bold pattern play, and references to decades like the '70s and '80s.  Below are the top 5 restaurant design trends you'll see in 2020.

1. Tone-on-tone Interiors
2. Maximalism
3. Cozy and Comfortable Spaces
4. '80s Influences
5. Wellness

1. Tone-on-Tone Interiors

Last year, some of our favorite monochromatic spaces opted for less dramatic color choices in favor of warm beige tones and light woods, like this bakery in Vancouver designed by Ste Marie, or this cookie shop in the West Village designed by The New Design Project, while other restaurant interiors weren't afraid of bold colors.

As a counterpoint to maximalism, a tonal look combines carefully curated layers of varying hues, textures, and materials to create a space that feels both contemporary and bold. Add natural materials like stone and wood to enhance the tactile experience to create a space that's effortlessly relaxed.

2. Maximalism Design

After years of anemic white walls and rustic barn wood, maximalism happily ushers in a sense of grandeur and excess. A carefully curated mash of unapologetically bold patterns, saturated colors, and eccentric finishes all have a place here. Beyond mixing patterns and textures. Beyond mixing patterns and textures, you'll see more antique elements mixed with modern furniture to create the perfect layered look.

Andy Lounge Chairs without arms.

3. Comfortable Seating

This trend has been gaining momentum over the past few years (as noted in our 2019 trend forecast) and we've already seen this trend take over the office world with the rise of "resimercial" spaces, but in 2020, expect the world of restaurant design to go full-steam ahead with the comfort trend.

While the industrial aesthetic dominated the 2010s, in this new decade you can expect to see more upholstery in the form of lounge areas, upholstered booths, and fully upholstered chairs. From a fast casual to a five-course meal, you'll see more interiors that are designed to be as easy on the eyes as they are on the rear no matter the duration of dinner. Think generously cushioned seats, pillow soft backs, and dreamy upholstery details.

4. '80s Influences

Everyone loves to hate on the '80s, but the era known for big hair and even bigger sleeves undoubtedly left a lasting impression on the world of interior design. From floor-to-ceiling florals to Memphis-inspired patterns, the decade that gave us The Breakfast Club and MTV is back in a big way. You'll see furniture and architecture that has more geometric shapes, over-sized proportions, and bolder color schemes, like our Frankie table collection.

Dining space with natural wood Full Hurdle chairs.

5. Wellness Restaurant Trend

The "wellness" trend doesn't just imply a room full of plants (although that does help). Wellness-focused design means creating spaces that promote a better, healthier lifestyle (mentally and physically). These places often become an oasis of sorts in urban areas, acting as an escape from the hustle of city life, and a convenient opportunity to unplug. This trend is so popular that even specialty apparel company, Lululemon jumped in the game, creating a one-of-a-kind cafe experience in their newest flagship store in Chicago.