top of page

Welcome to the S+O Design Associates Blog: Unveiling the Art of Exceptional Design

Step into a world of boundless creativity, where interior design meets innovation and imagination knows no limits. Welcome to the S+O Design Associates Blog, your gateway to a captivating universe where every line, curve, and colour breathes life into extraordinary spaces. Here, we invite you to embark on an immersive journey of inspiration, knowledge, and the art of exceptional Interior Design.

At S+O Design Associates, we believe that interior design is more than just aesthetics; it's an exquisite dance of form and function, intertwining to elevate everyday experiences. Our blog is a celebration of this philosophy—a place where design enthusiasts, industry professionals, and curious minds converge to explore the dynamic landscape of design in all its dimensions.

As experts in interior design, architectural design, and hospitality projects, our passion for crafting captivating spaces knows no bounds. From the captivating interiors of luxurious hotels to the cozy corners of intimate residences, each project is a testament to the transformative power of design.

Here on our interior design blog, we unveil a treasure trove of interior design insights, trends, and innovative techniques that redefine what's possible. With every article, we aim to inspire, educate, and spark curiosity, offering a glimpse into the magic that unfolds when creativity meets technology, and dreams become reality.

Expect to immerse yourself in thought-provoking discussions on the latest interior design trends, sustainable practices, and the evolving role of technology in shaping modern spaces. From exploring the nuances of residential design to delving into the art of bar and hospitality spaces, our blog traverses a diverse array of design realms.

More than just a platform for industry professionals, our blog is a welcoming space for design enthusiasts and homeowners alike. Whether you're seeking inspiration for your next home project, contemplating the design of your dream bar, or simply curious about the fascinating world of interior design, we have something special in store for you.

We invite you to join us on this captivating journey, where we peel back the curtain on the secrets of exceptional interior design, share the stories behind our projects, and explore the design philosophies that shape our world. Together, let's discover the artistry, passion, and boundless possibilities that reside within the realm of interior design.

Are you ready to unlock the door to the world of exceptional interior design? Step inside, and let the adventure begin.

The design of spaces has a significant impact on how people feel, behave, and perform within them. With this in mind, it is not surprising that there is a growing interest in creating workplaces that emulate the warm and welcoming atmosphere of a hospitality venue. This crossover between hospitality and workplace design has led to an increasing number of interior designers, commercial designers, and restaurant designers working on office design projects. One such firm at the forefront of this trend is S+O Design Associates.

Hospitality design is a discipline that focuses on creating comfortable and aesthetically pleasing environments for guests. Similarly, commercial design seeks to create spaces that enhance the user experience and support business goals. By applying the principles of hospitality and commercial design to office spaces, designers can create work environments that are not only functional but also inspiring and enjoyable to be in.

One of the key elements of hospitality design that can be applied to office design is the use of warm, inviting materials and textures. For example, soft lighting, plush seating, and natural materials such as wood and stone can make a space feel more inviting and comfortable. Similarly, restaurant designers often use lighting to create an intimate and cosy atmosphere, which can also be applied to the workplace.

In addition to materials and textures, colour can also play a significant role in creating a welcoming and stimulating environment. Bright colours can promote energy and creativity, while softer colours can promote relaxation and focus. Commercial designers often use colour psychology to create spaces that evoke specific emotions and behaviours. When applied to the workplace, this can help employees feel more engaged, motivated, and productive.

Another key element of hospitality design is the use of social spaces, such as lounges and cafes. These areas are designed to encourage social interaction and relaxation, and can be adapted to the workplace to create collaborative and comfortable workspaces. For example, a company might create a communal kitchen or break room, complete with comfortable seating and inviting décor. This can encourage employees to take breaks, interact with one another, and build a sense of community within the workplace.

S+O Design Associates is an interior design firm that has successfully applied these principles to create inspiring work environments. Their portfolio includes a range of commercial, hospitality, and workplace design projects, including offices for tech companies and co-working spaces. By leveraging their expertise in hospitality and commercial design, S+O Design Associates creates workplaces that are not only functional, but also beautiful and inspiring.

In conclusion, the crossover between hospitality and workplace design is a growing trend that is transforming the way we think about office spaces. By applying the principles of hospitality and commercial design, interior designers, restaurant designers, and commercial designers can create workspaces that are not only functional but also aesthetically pleasing and inspiring. S+O Design Associates is just one example of a firm that is leading the way in this field, and it will be interesting to see how this trend continues to evolve in the future.

Updated: Aug 3, 2023

Lidar scanning is an exciting technology that has the potential to revolutionize the way interior designers approach their work. In this blog post, we will explore what lidar scanning is, how it works, and why it's relevant to restaurant and hospitality design. Lidar scanning is a technology that uses laser beams to measure distances and create detailed 3D models of objects and spaces. It stands for "Light Detection and Ranging" and works by emitting a laser beam that bounces off of surfaces and returns to the device, which then calculates the distance and creates a point cloud, or a collection of data points that represent the physical shape and dimensions of the space.

So, how can lidar scanning be used in restaurant and hospitality design? First and foremost, it can greatly improve accuracy and efficiency in the design process. Traditionally, designers would rely on measurements and sketches to create floor plans and other design elements. However, these methods can be time-consuming and prone to error. Lidar scanning can quickly and accurately capture the dimensions of a space, allowing designers to create more precise floor plans, furniture layouts, and other design elements.

Another benefit of lidar scanning is that it can capture details that may be difficult to measure manually, such as the height of ceilings or the shape of unique architectural features. This can help designers create more informed design decisions, and ensure that their designs are both functional and aesthetically pleasing.

In addition, lidar scanning can be used to create immersive visualizations and virtual reality experiences. By importing the point cloud data into design software, designers can create 3D models that allow clients to visualize their space in a more realistic and interactive way. This can be especially useful for hospitality design, where the atmosphere and ambiance of a space can greatly impact the guest experience.

Lastly, lidar scanning can also be used for post-construction documentation and analysis. By scanning a completed space, designers can create accurate "as-built" documentation that can be used for future renovations or upgrades. Additionally, the data collected during scanning can be analysed to identify areas for improvement or optimization. In conclusion, lidar scanning is a powerful tool that can greatly benefit interior designers in the restaurant and hospitality industry. By improving accuracy, efficiency, and visualization capabilities, lidar scanning can help designers create more informed and successful designs.

If you are an interior designer specializing in restaurant design, consider incorporating lidar scanning into your workflow to take your designs to the next level.

Updated: Feb 28, 2023

Restaurant Design: Tips and Insights from an Interior Designer

As an interior design company specializing in restaurant design, we know how important it is to create a unique and memorable ambiance that resonates with customers. Whether you're designing a small bistro or a large-scale fine dining establishment, restaurant design plays a crucial role in the success of your business.

In this article, we'll address some common questions that restaurant owners may have about the design process. We'll cover everything from the basics of restaurant design to the cost of hiring a designer and the key elements to consider when designing a restaurant. We'll also discuss the different types of restaurants and the role that architects may play in the design process.

Getting Started with Restaurant Design

When designing a restaurant, it's important to start with a clear vision of what you want to achieve. You should consider the style and feel of the restaurant, the target audience, and the budget. Some of the initial steps include:

  • Research: Look for inspiration from other restaurants, design blogs, or social media platforms such as Pinterest and Instagram. Gather photos and ideas that capture the look and feel that you're going for.

  • Planning: Create a floor plan, select materials, and choose a color scheme that aligns with your concept. These choices will impact everything from the furniture you select to the lighting and artwork.

  • Menu design: Consider how the menu design will fit into the overall aesthetic of the restaurant. You may choose to incorporate menu design into the decor itself by displaying menu items on chalkboards or wall-mounted displays.

  • Design bars: Bars are a key element in many restaurants, and should be designed in a way that complements the rest of the space. You may want to use similar materials or colours to tie the bar area into the overall design.

Cost of Restaurant Design

One of the most common questions we receive from restaurant owners is how much it will cost to design their space. The cost of restaurant design can vary widely depending on the size and scope of the project, as well as the design firm you choose to work with. Some costs to consider include:

  • Hiring a designer: Depending on the scope of the project, you may need to hire an interior designer, a restaurant designer, or both. These professionals will help you bring your vision to life, but will add to the overall cost of the project.

  • Materials: The materials you choose for your restaurant will also impact the overall cost. High-end finishes such as marble or custom lighting will be more expensive than simpler materials.

  • Labour: The cost of labour will depend on the scope of the project, the size of the space, and the number of workers required to complete the project.

Designing a Small Restaurant

Designing a small restaurant can be challenging, but there are several strategies you can use to maximize the space. Some tips include:

  • Layout: Optimize the space by choosing a layout that promotes flow and functionality. Consider incorporating a bar area or creating an open kitchen to maximize the space.

  • Furniture: Choose furniture that is both comfortable and functional. Consider using booths to maximize seating and provide privacy.

  • Lighting: Use lighting to create the illusion of space. Use natural light when possible and incorporate lighting fixtures that enhance the ambiance of the space.

The Concept of Restaurant Design

A cohesive and well-executed concept is essential to the success of any restaurant. A strong concept helps to differentiate your restaurant from others and creates a unique experience for customers. Some tips for developing a concept include:

  • Consider your target audience: Your concept should appeal to your target audience and align with their preferences.

  • Be authentic: The concept should be authentic and align with the vision and values of the restaurant owner.

Consider the competition: Look at what other restaurants are doing in the area and strive to differentiate your concept from theirs.

What Restaurant Designers Do

Restaurant designers are specialized interior designers who have experience working specifically with restaurants and other hospitality spaces. They work with restaurant owners to create a unique and functional space that aligns with the owner's vision and goals. Some of the services that restaurant designers provide include:

  • Concept development: Restaurant designers work with the owner to develop a concept that reflects the owner's vision and appeals to the target audience.

  • Space planning: Restaurant designers develop a detailed floor plan that optimizes the use of space and promotes functionality.

  • Material selection: Restaurant designers help choose materials such as furniture, lighting, and finishes that align with the concept and budget.

  • Construction oversight: Restaurant designers oversee the construction process to ensure that the design is executed correctly and on budget.

Is Interior Design a Stressful Job?

Like any job, interior design can be stressful at times, but it can also be rewarding. Designers must manage multiple projects at once, work with clients, and ensure that projects are completed on time and on budget. However, for those who are passionate about design, the rewards can be significant.

5 Key Areas to Consider When Designing a Restaurant

When designing a restaurant, it's important to consider the following key areas:

  1. Ambiance: The overall atmosphere and aesthetic of the restaurant.

  2. Functionality: The layout and flow of the space.

  3. Comfort: The comfort and functionality of the furniture and seating.

  4. Lighting: The lighting should create ambiance and highlight specific areas of the space.

  5. Sound: The sound should be carefully considered to promote a pleasant dining experience.

4 Basic Types of Restaurants

There are four basic types of restaurants:

  1. Fine Dining: High-end restaurants that typically offer a formal atmosphere, expensive menus, and an extensive wine list.

  2. Casual Dining: Restaurants that offer a casual atmosphere and menu at a lower price point.

  3. Fast-Casual: Restaurants that offer fast service and a limited menu, but with higher quality ingredients than fast food restaurants.

  4. Fast Food: Restaurants that offer quick, inexpensive food and service.

Is it Cheaper to Build or Buy a Restaurant?

Whether it's cheaper to build or buy a restaurant will depend on a variety of factors, including the location, size, and condition of the building. Buying an existing restaurant can be less expensive upfront, but may require significant renovations to align with your concept. Building a restaurant from scratch can be more expensive, but allows for more creative control and can potentially lead to higher profits in the long run.


Restaurant design plays a crucial role in the success of a restaurant. From developing a concept to selecting materials and managing the construction process, restaurant designers and interior designers help create a space that aligns with the owner's vision and appeals to the target audience.

When designing a restaurant, it's important to consider key areas such as ambiance, functionality, comfort, lighting, and sound. There are also four basic types of restaurants to consider when developing a concept.

While architects can play a role in restaurant design, they are not always necessary. Restaurant designers and interior designers can often handle the design process, especially for smaller projects.

Interior design is a competitive field, and while it can be stressful at times, it can also be rewarding. Some of the highest paid interior design jobs include creative directors, design directors, and senior interior designers.

In conclusion, restaurant design is a complex and rewarding field that requires a combination of creative and technical skills. Whether you're designing a small cafe or a high-end restaurant, the key is to develop a concept that aligns with your vision and appeals to your target audience. Working with a restaurant designer or interior designer can help ensure that your space is functional, visually appealing, and aligned with your budget and goals.

S+O Design Associates INTERIOR DESIGN  Blog
Check out our portfolio to learn more about our work.

bottom of page