Founded in 2001, Gourmet Burger Kitchen – or GBK for short – is a restaurant chain that is all about the burger.
From the classic beef burger through to the appropriately named The Mighty, GBK has been serving up belly busting burgers to satisfied customers for over a decade.
In 2011, keen to keep the brand at the forefront of the market, GBK implemented a scheme to refresh its existing sites through a programme of refurbishments. Three design practices were appointed to rework GBK sites across the UK, with design led architectural practice Moreno Masey being one such company.
Commenting on his involvement with GBK’s grand refurbishment scheme, Moreno Masey Company Director, Rodrigo Moreno Masey, said:
“Moreno Masey is one of three design practices who have been brought on board the GBK estate to roll out a series of refurbishments, in order to bring their existing sites up to date. As a number of existing GBK sites still carry the company’s ‘classic’ design we are heavily involved in a rebranding exercise which will see the restaurants refreshed for today’s market.
“The sites will maintain the DNA of a GBK restaurant, so customers will still get the same experience that they have come to expect from the brand however each site will be specific to its location. We are not trying to design a restaurant that is unrecognisable, as this would be detrimental to the brand; instead we want to enhance key aspects – such as the food – whilst creating something that is a little more edgy. The aim of this scheme is to update each site but maintain a comfortable dining experience for all GBK’s customers.”
The first fit-out that Moreno Masey conducted was GBK Northcote Road, which was undertaken in just four weeks, beginning in August 2011.
Discussing the site, Rodrigo said:
“Northcote Road was GBK’s very first site. The restaurant is much smaller than most of their other restaurants, with just 22 covers, but it is a very busy site. So GBK approached us and asked us the question, ‘what would you do to change the site?’
“So after some consideration we changed the shop front by introducing new sash windows, we then developed a new seating bar and looked at other ways to improve the available space. We thought about everything, even down to where to place the condiments.
“For us the site acted as a bit of a test for our ideas – and it worked.”
Following on from the successful refurbishment of GBK Northcote Road, Moreno Masey started work on GBK Oxford Road and GBK Greenwich.
On the Oxford Road site Moreno Masey divided the restaurant into a number of open spaces and then introduced a few quirky elements such as reclaimed bus seats and jeep headlights, to give the site a unique twist. Meanwhile the Greenwich site benefited from some new decorations as well as new furniture and the introduction of a fireplace.”
“The Greenwich site is a Listed building, with a lot of interesting history. One key aspect of this refurbishment was that we had to find a way to link the ground floor with the first floor, so that the upstairs was not just a secondary space. We introduced a fireplace and new furniture and this area now draws people upstairs to what is a very comfy space.”
The next site to benefit from the refurbishment was GBK Brighton, whilst most recently Moreno Massey has completed work on Nottinghill.
“In keeping with its location, GBK Brighton is a little bit tongue in cheek and features a silver and blue sequined fascia which looks great when it shimmers in the sun. Meanwhile GBK Nottinghill is situated along Portobello Road so is a very trendy site, with cut glass lamps and vintage-styled furniture.”
With work now complete on the first five sites, Moreno Masey is looking to the next two sites which are set to benefit from a makeover – GBK Covent Garden and GBK St Paul’s.
“Our involvement with GBK is very important to us and it is very flattering to be given such a high level of trust with our design work.
“We are a young practice, who is looking to push the design envelope in a bold new way and this is something which fits in perfectly with what GBK plan for this refurbishment scheme. We look forward to continuing this great relationship as the scheme continues.”
For more information on GBK please visit www.gbk.co.uk.
WPL Interiors Ltd
WPL Interiors Ltd is a fit-out contractor specialising on refurbishment projects and new build schemes within the restaurant industry. The company has been in operation for three years, however, company director Kevin Nicks has more than 15 years experience working in the trade.
To date, WPL Interiors Ltd has completed work on many high profile projects, including, Chilli Pickle and My Hotel in Brighton and a restaurant for acclaimed celebrity chef Brian Turner, amongst others. Most recently WPL Interiors Ltd has provided fit-out services to GBK on its site in Brighton and the Catering Van.
WPL Interiors Ltd Company Director, Kevin Nicks, said:
“GBK are a fun, energetic client that is not afraid to push the boundaries, and they are great company to work with.”
“I have a vast experience of working within the restaurant industry. I know exactly where everything needs to be and how to go about it and working on restaurant fit-outs is what I enjoy getting involved in.
“At WPL Interiors Ltd team work is the key to our success. We have a fantastic team, they are a great bunch to work with and they support each other to get the job done.”