Restaurant & Bar Design Awards Q&A

Speaking to Restaurant & Bar Design Awards, creative agency 20.20’s Creative Director Jon Lee talks about their work, how they put people at the heart of what they do and their award winning work for Dial Square at Emirates Stadium.

Jon Lee, Creative Director at 20.20
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Q. For those who don’t know, who are 20.20?

We are an experience agency that believe in brands that resonate with people. A deep understanding of human behaviour helps us set the pace and ambition for businesses across the globe. Our aim is to change the way people play, buy and work for the better, by creating authentic brands and real experiences for the digital age.

Q. Where can we see your work?

All over the globe, in the past few years we have created the master planning for the new Scotiabank Arena in Toronto and created the new Scotiabank Club for Maple Leafs Sport Entertainment. We were heavily involved in bringing The Turf Club to life as well as other spaces at Churchill Downs Arena. On5 at Ascot has been probably their most successful hospitality space over the years and we have worked in the UK with Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City to a name a few brand and experience projects. The new Odeon Leicester Square is also a great new project we are very proud of.

ODEON - Leicester Square
ODEON - Leicester Square
Scotiabank Club, Toronto ©Ben Rahn/A-Frame Inc
Dial Square – Emirates Stadium. Restaurant & Bar Design Awards UK Winner 2019 ©Guy Archard
The Avenell – Emirates Stadium
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Q. Why do you think Dial Square at Arsenal caught the judges’ eyes?

I think because it’s completely unique and authentic to the history of the club. There is nothing like it. We put the fan first and start from there. We will always put an idea behind a space that really helps challenge the thinking. Behind all that, we have a great client in Arsenal and a great project team that really understand the challenges and ambitions of the club to keep pushing and to put the fan first. It is a very big and beautiful space and when you walk in there, people stop and go wow, it’s very unexpected in a stadium.

Q. What’s really important to you in your work?

The first answer is obviously the planet, the materials we are using now are all sourced ethically and we are doing more development thinking on how we can use sustainable materials in all our projects. The way we behave as designers is critical to this.

Secondly, it has to be about creating commercial spaces, that people fall in love with. The study of people and behaviours is very important and key to our thinking and the success of what we create. With The Avenell we did new things to immerse the fans into the overall experience. It has its own soundtrack, its lighting is timed to kick-off, it’s what we are calling a real social experience. Yes, a space needs to impress and look beautiful but, it’s also got to work, operate and fit with behaviours. We are always learning new techniques and processes to help us think about how we create and implement real experiences.

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