Category Archives: Interior Design


Does anyone remember when McDonald’s used to look like this?











Or better yet, this?










McDonald’s is currently undergoing another brand transformation which is costing them $1 billion, and it looks like this:

Sleek, shiny, linear, simple, and modern. As you can see, the symbolic red mansard roof has been flipped over and stuck to the side of the building as a simple red block. It draws a lot of attention and semiotically helps people recognize the establishment.

Although this transformation is new and hip (especially the interiors, which help to completely forget that someone is eating high calorie and tricks them into thinking that they are eating high end), the cladding on the facade looks a little cheap in real life. Also, previous designs of  McDonald’s developments have included numerous efforts to alter the base design into a design that fits its surroundings. How will this new transformation fit in with its surroundings now? The materials and shapes are foreign to most places and spaces, and will probably end up standing out because of its cartoon-like look.

In conclusion, this transformation will bring the company better business, especially since it comes along with interior workspace improvements to refine speed and quality of service. It will also semiotically alter the the appearance of the restaurant in many ways that represent speed, quality and hospitality. It is a very beautiful restaurant for what it is serving, however it may be pushing the boundaries of modern architecture down a lonely path.


“Cafe Plenty – Feeding the appetite and satisfying the soul”.

I came across this cafe when I was commuting by Greyhound between cities with a stop-over in Toronto. I had a few hours to spend, and so I took a look around for a spot to drink some coffee and read. I knew this cafe was new because I know Dundas street between Dundas square and Kensington Market like the palm of my hand. I figured I had to check it out! And to my surprise, it was absolutely beautiful. When I walked in I was instantly greeted, which I really appreciate because I know a lot about good customer service. Then I instantly noticed the strong sense of place. You know the interior designer did a good job when you feel like you are walking in to a whole new atmosphere (and it’s hard to shake off the grimey atmosphere of the area). The cafes palette consists of a lot of white wood and tile with wooden (beige/light brown) and metal (silver) details. The interior design style has a strong upscale/classy aura with a raw/industrial twist, which reminds me of a lot of the bars and cafes in Vancouver such as Stackhouse BurgerBar. The frontage is very narrow and is over 90% glazed, which, as I have previously described with the Princess Cafe, is very inviting and provides a strong connection between the outdoor public realm and the indoor space.

During the 2 hours that I sat in this cafe, I noticed many people stopping to take a look, most of which decided to come inside. The cafe opened in December, so it is relatively new and a lot of people are still passing by and noticing it for the first time. I thought it was nice to see a lot of passers-by immediately convinced to come in after noticing it.

The cafe offers a variety of beautifully crafted lunch-style food. Everything looked delicious!

The cafe is located within a 2 minute walking distance from the St. Patrick subway station, and on the way to OCAD, Chinatown, the AGO, and Kensington Market, which puts it in a prime location that is easy to access and stumble upon, and that is frequented by a high volume of traffic. There are no cafes to compare this one to in the area, therefore I am certain that it will maintain a successful business. It is a diamond in the rough, and it is truly something to talk about.

%d bloggers like this: