Top Nosh Prestige, PR and more people: these are all things you can expect if you open a fine dining restaurant at your attraction. A good selling point definitely, but are they worth the outlay? Kath Hudson, contributing editor
t may come as no surprise that art and museum lovers are willing to pay high prices for a fine dining meal, but now even theme park visitors are showing an appetite for white tablecloths at the end of the day. In many ways, high-end restaurants are a natural fit with visitor attractions, which offer a day out or a holiday treat. When people are relaxed and in holiday mode, they are often inclined to spend more money, be more adventurous and seal the memories with a delicious meal. Plus, many attractions have stunning locations, either man-made or natural, which are a perfect complement to a top restaurant. While the traditional fare of pizzas might be more profitable than an upscale restaurant, as consumers seek higher quality culinary experiences and with the food offering improving across
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the industry, a burger and fries might not cut the mustard for much longer. The high upfront investment costs, coupled with narrow operational margins, can make this appear a daunting option, so it is important to either bring in an external operator, enter into a partnership, or engage a highly knowledgeable and experienced team. Finally, high end doesn’t mean stuffy. Even if people are paying US$100 (£65, e91) a head, it might not be possible to impose a dress code, especially if they’ve been riding coasters all day.
n About the author: Kath Hudson is a contributing editor of Attractions Management and other Leisure Media magazines. Email: seventhwavedesign.com
THE MODERN The Museum of Modern Art, USA
ver the past 10 years, MoMA has found that having a fancy restaurant has secured the institution column inches in publications around the world, which has led to more customers for both the www.attractionshandbook.com