Months before we opened the doors to either of our cafés; before we found our baristas, signed agreements with suppliers, curated our exceptionally cool playlists; before the cement mixer was turned on, we had to set in stone the design of our new space.
We love the design process. Although super challenging, when you see everything finally come together just as you imagined it months before, it is as humbling as it is rewarding. It would be remiss not to mention the efforts of Joe from Arc Construction who keeps his head when we are losing ours, and reassures us when we’re in doubt: “That is an architectural feature, Stephen!"
But design isn’t just a visual thing. It’s not just fancy plants and funky artwork. We need to consider workflow, so our baristas aren’t falling over each other when it gets busy behind the bar. The idea of a coffee shop as a third space - a neutral space between home and work - is not a new one either. But most importantly, we need to make people feel welcome.
We’re lucky to have many loyal customers who have started their coffee journey with us. We’d like to think that’s because we make great coffee, but the truth is that only 50% of a customer’s emotional connection is with the product. The rest comes down to a variety of other factors. That could be their relationships with the staff, the music, even the lighting. In fact, when one customer was telling us how he hadn’t been into coffee until he started coming to us, he wasn’t shy about mentioning that “It doesn’t feel like I’m in a hospital waiting room here”. Well, thank you sir! We’ll take your word on that one.