The Metropolitan

Project: The MET Rebrand and Signage Development

Date: 2016

THE OVERVIEW

I was approached by a creative agency in Louisville to create a rebrand for one of their clients The Metroplitan. The Metropolitan, a restaurant located in the ski town of Beaver Creek, Colorado, was suffering from an identity crisis and looking to refresh their brand.

 

At that time, their customers were unsure how to define and interact with the restaurant as they were offering both breakfast and fine dining. With the outlook of a brand refresh their hopes were to position the brand on being a destination for wine, cocktails and tapas.  

 

In addition to the identity crisis, the restaurant was located on the second level of Beaver Creek Village and posed an additional challenge as they were going to need signage that could capture the awareness of the foot traffic on the square.

THE VISION

The new Metropolitan will be a refined and relaxing location where fine wine, craft cocktails and small plates will come to define the social lounge culture of Beaver Creek. It will take advantage of current trends in the dining and drinking experience, in a sophisticated ‘mountain modern’ setting.

THE STRATEGY

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Redefine the brand

Develop a more appropriate tagline that clearly defines the new approach and explains the offering to the public what the restaurant experience will be.

Refresh the Logo Mark

The existing logo mark is dated and doesn't exemplify the casual sophistication direction of the company. The goal will be to refine the logo mark to communicate a more modern elegance while still being approachable. 

Signage

The existing signage does little to communicate the experience, or establish the location. Will need to develop a new signage design that reflects the new branding, positions the restaurant with the new tag and clearly identifies the location.  Will also need a door front signage to enhance the visibility of the location.

Image of older signage above the door in the Beaver Creek Village Square

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Image of older environmental signage in the Beaver Creek Village Square

To begin, I set out to find design inspiration centered around the ideas of sophistication and luxury. I found that there were great ideas in the liquor industry amongst the wine department. Below are several examples of sophisticated, refined, and luxurious designs.

Once I had some inspiration, I sketched out several different ideas and focused my exploration on the initial “M”. Ideas ranged from metropolitan buildings to modern twists on culinary themes. For example, using circles as representations of the small plates and wine glass rims.

The client chose to proceed with a circular badge logo whose shape could be associated to a wine barrel or dinner plate. We went through several rounds of font options and color combinations to find the right fit and tone that best portrayed the characteristics of the brand.

 

The final identity mark paired a charcoal gray with a muted gold alongside sans serif fonts to represent the modern sophistication and rustic industrial feel of the restaurant. Once that was established, the design was adapted to a rectangular format for signage above the door, and custom environmental signage hung in the village square.

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Rectangular identity mark for outdoor signage

Circular identity mark

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Outdoor signage

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Signage hung in Beaver Creek Villiage Square