Active glass used in a show kitchen

On a recent project, we had the opportunity…..

Planning for Commercial Kitchen Design Success

You have a vision for the design of the kitchen or bar. It’s going to be functional of course; efficient and good to work in. Everything in its place, all the equipment the right size and capacity to deliver the service exactly how you have planned.

Why is it then that all too often the kitchen, the engine room of the facility can be left to inexperienced or unqualified or even suppliers to deliver the vision?

It should come as no surprise that you do not achieve the vision if you don’t take the same care with the back of house that you lavish on the front of house that the customer sees; where there has been experienced professionals advising on everything from space planning, furniture and lighting to finishes and colour.

Ask yourself the following questions about the project that you are embarking on:

Is your vision or project so unimportant that you would risk not getting the best advice available?

Are you really saving money by accepting free advice or design services: the old adage the “you get what you pay for” is as true today as when you first heard it.

Are you valuing the service by the cost or the quality?

Professional Service is available, and it doesn’t have to cost a lot when compared with the cost to you of getting it wrong.

Tim Smallwood has been advising clients in Australia, Asia and the Middle East on the design and equipping of kitchens, bars and laundries for the past 35 years. Projects have ranged from Corporate and Government to single operators and franchises. Over that time experienced and independent advice on the design of their foodservices include:

  • Large hospitals in Bahrain, Singapore, Hong Kong and Melbourne; small hospitals in country Australia.
  • Café’s in Dubai and Abu Dhabi; restaurants in Melbourne.
  • Hotels in Oman and Perth; Newcastle and Geelong.
  • Canteens in Canberra and cafeterias in Shanghai.
  • Military bases, ships and trains.
  • Stadiums, convention centres, sports venues and entertainment venues in Australia and Asia.


  1. Foodservice Planning and Design Advisory Services
  2. Operations & Design Brief Development
  3. Sustainable Kitchens


Foodservice Planning and Design Advisory Services

  • Operating systems planning.
  • Workflow planning


Our overheated industries did not only produce masses of useless goods but also giant ecologic problems, not to mention the effects on our following generations. John Thackara stated in his remarkable book ‘In the Bubble’ that if we have designed us in our problems we could as well design us out of the problems.

Research shows that our society can reduce its consumption drastically without reducing the standard of living just by thinking a little bit more. To find ideas to do less but get more it takes creativity and the capability to break rules – characteristic attitudes of designers. We can design higher consumption – and we can design lower consumption.

The Brundtland Commission of the United Nations defined: “Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”

“Marketing as such is ethically blind”
- Peter Ulrich, Institut für Wirtschaftsethik Hochschule St. Gallen

So why do we continue listening to the blind when we have to look into the future?

Good design looks good, but good looking does not make good design.