Asian cuisine is easily one of my favorite’s. It’s full of rich flavors and delicious smells. About two weeks ago I stumbled upon a branding project for the Taikin Restaurant, an Asian cuisine restaurant in Florida, the USA. Through its food, service and visual identity design this restaurant manages to create a true experience for its visitors. Experience design is going to be of great importance in 2018, so when I saw this project I knew I had to share it. This design is extremely well rounded and therefore a valuable example for anyone looking at experience design for their hospitality brand.
I was fortunate enough to get in touch with Oscar Bastidas, the designer of Taikin Restaurant. He is a graphic designer from Venezuela, now living in Florida and currently working freelance. He developed the complete branding for the restaurant, from the creative concept to the naming, logo design, menus, stationary and so on.
“Taikin means “fortune” in Japanese; a word that is linked to the Tanuki, which is a Japanese mythological character that represents good fortune among other aspects. I took this character as the main part of the “graphic story” that is told in the restaurant, a story full of illustrations also linked with another “YOKAI” animals as secondary characters.”
“The graphic and creative concept of the restaurant was made to be enjoyed and experienced throughout the process. The story behind Taikin begins to be explained in the menu of the restaurant, information that continues to spread in the chopsticks sleeves, take out bags, and even in the shirts of the staff, to finally enjoy the complete graphic story when entering the bathrooms, completely covered in graphics that explain the meaning of Tanuki and the mythological stories of this character.”
That’s where the strength of this branding project is at. The complete, 360 experience. Visitors are drawn into the restaurant’s story during their dinner via all kinds of small hints. They get sucked into the authenticity of the brand, its origin. This stimulates them to talk about the restaurant to their friends and family and increases the chance of them becoming returning visitors.
Solid concepts win
Oscar: “All the branding design I do has, in some way, my personal signature. I try to create brands that I’ve never seen before at all. I look for this “differentiating factor” that will make the brand unique, both in personality and look. Right now, people can buy preset logos for $20 everywhere, with the same fonts and style that are “trendy” at the moment, but in the end all the brands start looking kind of similar to each other, without soul. When you design a unique brand with a solid concept behind it, you will see the difference in people’s perception and finally on the market.”
Let’s take that last piece of advice into our hearts. Be ready to maybe spend a little bit more on your logo by hiring a good graphic designer. You will enjoy the benefits later: a brand with a strong visual identity will last you years, as others fade into the clutter of “hipster”, “retro” and “vintage”. Be you. It will work, I promise.
Find out more about Oscar (the designer) here:
Did you find this helpful or interesting? Then please leave a comment! Also, if you know any other restaurant which I should check out because of its visual identity, please let me know.
> I post an inspirational example of great restaurant branding every 2 weeks. If you want to stay updated, make sure to become part of the Tremento Tribe.