Designing for Sex
Why do people frequent bars and nightclubs. Psychology 101 will teach you that human beings are social animals and that we have “needs” One of those is reproduction and consequently 90% of us are all driven by the need to reproduce.( that why we have over 6 billion people on the planet) Yes it’s also called socialising and contact but at the end of the day we need somewhere to meet people to have those relationships with.( before anyone gets on their high horse about this remember the context and what we as designers are trying to achieve) Bars and nightclubs in particular capitalise on this. They are a place to meet and have fun with the opposite sex often for the young in the hope of meeting someone to have a relationship with either immediate or eventually. Yes I know that this is a very general statement and there are probably lots of arguments that can be had from this however it doesn’t deter from the fact that this is what nightclubs are for at their most basic level, Entertainment and fun with the strong possibility of meeting someone that is attracted to you and vice versa. People are attracted to each other and the job of the nightclub is to facilitate this and the enjoyment of those people. This is usually for opposite sexes however there is an element in society that prefer the same sex and you may be commissioned to design for that market too. Be open minded your job is to design for the market ( this occurs not only in Hospitality but all commercial sectors) This isn’t to be confused with restaurants or local family bars and restaurants but more where adults go to meet and socialise.
Designing for sex?
It’s an interesting heading and the patrons will ultimately deny that is the reason they are going to the club but if we design the club to cater for the human elements then it will surely be successful. The idea is that boys will follow where the girls go. You will notice many clubs or nightspots with promotions on that favour getting the girls in the door. Girls are not generally big consumers but the boys are and that will be who the nightclub owners are after. They want their money. So let’s get down to what I mean about designing for sex.
There are a few areas of nightclub design that you are able to use the sexual element and I’m not just talking about facilitating meeting people but also catering to the specific desires and needs of the different sexes.
Male and Female
Men and women are very different aren’t they? They like different things for recreation, they have different requirements when it comes to personal hygiene and visual stimulation varies incredibly. So let’s explore very generally what they prefer differently and this does vary to the age group. For arguments sake with nightclubs and the general age group that frequent them let’s stick to those between 20 and 45. Women prefer nice surroundings. The elements that make for a good night out include those surroundings and the atmosphere and experience that they enjoy are paramount to them returning to those surrounding’s. Men don’t care. If the room was a factory full of “ hotties” they would be just as happy (maybe happier) than in a high class bar in the Hilton. Yes men are from Mars and women from Venus and we as designers of nightclubs and bars need to cater for this. Consequently and the conclusion that I’m driving this article to is if you cater for the women then the men will come. The more design input and especially decorative element and theme in nightclubs the more it will be discussed , appreciated, admired, and even admonished if controversial to the critique. It will become part of the reason they are there. It’s as nice if not nicer than home and makes the patron feel “special” . When we design an opulent nightclub interior we add value to the nightclub experience ( and the price of the beverage).