Recently, the Korean cafe market is constantly growing, and cafes now have more purposes beyond the traditional one. Such individual-style cafes tend to get together along the same streets, so-called ‘cafe streets’. Each cafe street has characteristics as a single cultural space, while providing consumers with a diversity of choices and various experiential elements. Especially, sight accounts for over 80% when people get impressed in new environments, so visual elements must be the primary ones used to evaluate cafe streets. Thus, this study aims to analyze the present states of cafe streets and visual preferences in cafe users, and suggest a desirable direction of cafe street environments.
This study investigated visual preferences of cafe users from 4 typical cafes in Seoul. Through space analysis, this study analyzed correlations between preference and space. As for research methods, visual preference evaluation elements were extracted first, and based on a preference survey with adjective vocabulary, this study analyzed the environments of cafe streets through observation and photography shooting.
Conclusions are as follows.
In aesthetic preference for cafe exteriors, such elements as ‘formal’, ‘sophisticated’, ‘mature’ and ‘ordinary’ were high. It was also found that ‘bright’ was high in texture, ‘modern and exotic’ in historicity, and ‘open’ in openness. In preference for surrounding environments, such elements as ‘regular’, ‘tranquil’, ‘simple’, and ‘dynamic’ were high. Therefore, when cafe streets are designed with exotic and modern interiors, rather than traditional elements, based on environmental plans with simple and neat elements, rather than unique and fancy elements, they are expected to get more preferred by consumers. Especially when people have experience of being visually stimulated by aesthetic designs, visual elements may work as main preference elements. Therefore, this study came to conclusion that visual environmental factors play very important roles in cafe streets.