Whitbread is to roll out revamped interiors and an updated identity for its Beefeater brand, in a bid to bring continuity to its family-oriented positioning and simplify its offering for consumers.
A total of 20 restaurants will be refurbished nationwide by the end of February 2004, following trials earlier this year at six pilot restaurants. The first site opened on Friday in Crawley, followed this Friday by a restaurant in Chigwell.
Interiors work, including a design manual, is by Street Eite Associates, based on concepts created by the group with Beefeater and Interbrand. Internal graphics, including menus and signage, are by Linney Design, with external signage by Artis.
Interbrand undertook strategic repositioning work and revamped Beefeater’s visual identity for the trial sites. According to a Beefeater spokeswoman, it has also developed an ‘open grill concept’ for the brand.
Interbrand strategic director Graham Hales says, ‘We helped Beefeater clarify its brand. It was trying to appeal too widely and had outgrown itself. We’ve simplified the offering and dusted off its slightly anonymous identity.’
‘Research showed that Beefeater is firmly a “steak and chips” brand, so we didn’t want to distance the interiors too far from that market,’ says Street Eite partner Gary Eite. ‘They are smoother but not ultra modern and comfortably mid-market,’ he adds.
‘Pub and restaurant areas within each site will remain detached, but closer in look and feel. We’ve introduced pub-style features such as fireplaces, and updated the servery area to make it look more professional. It’s traditional with a twist,’ Eite explains.
Certain features are designed to reflect Beefeater’s strengthened focus on fresh grilled food, such as a metal balustrade with flame design and amber glass, Eite adds.