When it comes to the future of shopping malls, food is the new fashion.
Spurred on by the impacts of the pandemic, the next generation of food options will drive demand and create a new reason for customers to visit. But this will also require shopping malls to make some changes for this new food revolution:
- Design Modification through increased outdoor seating (within the lease line or additional kerbside seating from council). Restaurants will need to reconfigure to accommodate social-distancing rules in their dining rooms and expand patio space to both keep people safe and allow them to get out and socialise.
- Incorporating dark-kitchen locations in shopping centres. Also known as ghost kitchens or cloud kitchens – dark kitchens are highly efficient production units without a storefront that are optimised for delivery.
- Developing rooftop or open-air dining and drinking spaces and adopting placemaking principles. This is essential for attracting customers, but also for attracting high-end restaurant brands that can draw people in.
- Utilising pop-up food stalls and incubator initiatives for seasonal food and beverage concepts.
- Facilitating delivery platforms -in-house, food collective or third-party.
- Developing gourmet groceries to complement the restaurant or cafe cuisine.
- Facilitating pick-up points – food, alcohol and grocery delivered contactless to vehicles.
- Installing food lockers, hot, cold and ambient restaurant food lockers offering pick-up flexibility
- DDD – Drone Dining Deliveries. Drones have the potential to provide a solution to the logistical issues of the food delivery industry and are the leading candidates when it comes to driverless delivery solutions.
- Going greener. Shopping malls need to adapt to the trend towards supporting local products and companies, reducing food waste, eliminating single use plastics, utilising compostable packaging, plus new technology and non-gas-generated heating and cooking equipment.