Restaurant lighting: how to combine savings with functionality

By: Secom
1 de July, 2021
Reading time: 13 min

Restaurant lighting is one of the keys to creating a cosy environment and a satisfying experience. Restaurants are of fundamental importance to the social, economic and touristic life of any area. Given this importance, it is highly advisable to light restaurants in the best way possible, choosing aesthetically pleasing luminaires and lamps, and always looking for the best functionality and energy efficiency.

This article addresses...


Goals of a restaurant lighting project

A restaurant with correct lighting always combines design with atmosphere and this makes restaurant lighting an artform, since it contributes considerably towards making a deeply satisfying experience for the customer. For this reason, the lighting project must be taken into consideration from the initial restaurant design phases.

Understanding the style of the premises and experience sought

Every premises has its own style, for which all of its decorative and functional elements must be in harmony. Luminaires are no exception. Therefore, the following guidelines must be taken into consideration.

  • Focus the brightness on the table areas.
  • Choose each luminaire according to its location.
  • Evaluate colour temperature according to the sensations you wish to generate.
  • Pay special attention to the decorative and/or meaningful elements of the premises.

Lighting for different parts of the restaurant: customer and staff areas

Ambient lighting is the main source of light in a catering establishment. However, there is also secondary lighting on each table, staff areas etcetera.

In both cases, lighting is employed to emphasise specific areas, from the interior to the exterior facades. The luminaires chosen should give the establishment a special, decorative touch and different feel.


Energy saving

Thanks to the use of LED luminaires, energy saving is easier than ever. This technology is continuously growing and is ever more present in restaurants and other types of establishments. It is the most efficient, sustainable, versatile, adaptable, hard-wearing solution and it is very easy to use. For these reasons LED lighting in restaurants is put to use with excellent results. Thanks to the innovations in this technology, it can create cosy surroundings with lighting systems that are both long-lasting and efficient.

Creating atmosphere

Using this LED technology can create atmospheres that cause specific moods for the clients, improve their visual comfort and generate all kinds of sensations and experiences, from romantic to relaxed, from dynamic liveliness to any other kind of emotion.

It’s easy to obtain soft lighting with ceiling luminaires, wall fixtures or even table lights, for instance. Soft or intimate lighting must be combined with additional atmospheric lighting that facilitates the tasks of the restaurant workers.

How to light a restaurant

When lighting a restaurant it is important to take the following points into consideration.



The type of light for each area: light tonality and type of luminaire

In restaurants seeking a calm, relaxed atmosphere, the light should be soft in the table area. In fast food restaurants, and others that have a steady flow of customers, more intense lights are best. For instance, for a lively atmosphere it is advisable to use lighting of 4000k while, for a calm or relaxed atmosphere, luminaires that are limited to 3000k are more adequate.

Furthermore, strong white lights should be installed in the kitchen areas while, in the corridors, slightly less powerful lights should be used. At the bar, specifically focussed lights are most recommendable. The use of LED luminaires allows for energy savings of up to 90% in comparison with older systems.

Smart lighting systems for energy saving

To achieve high levels of energy saving, this type of establishment can employ smart lighting and home automation systems with timers and sensors that turn off or reduce the flow of light from luminaires when there is no activity nearby.

Placement of luminaires

Factors like the placement of luminaires are essential to lighting design. The placements should bear in mind kitchen, administration and service areas. These areas are completely different to guest areas.

Barra restaurante

The restaurant exterior

The restaurant’s exterior design must be harmonised with that of the interior. It is important to focus light on the name, while spotlights can be used to highlight any architectural or aesthetic areas features that emphasise the type of establishment it is.

Specialised SECOM products

At SECOM Illumination there are products that perfectly meet the criteria required to create quality illumination for a restaurant or bar. As a manufacturer, SECOM can paint the light fixture according to any RAL standard, ensuring it integrates well into the design of the premises. Below is a selection of our products that use LED technology.

  • Aliket Basic: continuous line lighting system for commercial spaces
  • Allur: interior hanging luminaire with a modern and attractive design that can provide indirect light. It contains the latest generation of LED lights.
  • Lartub: created for indoor wall hanging or suspension.
  • Twin: a suspended lighting system.
  • Boxter: an interior spotlight.
  • Loop Supra: an embedded luminaire with great performance and benefits.
  • Minicom: embedded luminaire for commercial spaces.

SECOM’s notable projects

SECOM is an industry leader when it comes to lighting projects for restaurants. Here are some examples:


  • Loja Abades Restaurant. A fine example of warm, elegant lighting achieved alongside aesthetic and energy saving requisites for a prestigious restaurant.
  • Calle Madre de Dios Restaurant (15, Murcia). Another example of a quality project, using high performance LED systems to create a unique space.
  • Restaurante Grao, Gandía. Energy saving, an aesthetically excellent lighting package and a cosy yet elegant atmosphere were facets that were brought together to make this SECOM project a success.

Restaurant lighting is not just an essential part of improving customer experience, it can also provide the real commercial success desired by restaurants in order to increase their revenue.


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