Panera Bread Unveils New Restaurant Design Catered to Changing Post-Pandemic Consumer Needs

by Julia Sanders

St. Louis — Panera Bread has unveiled a new restaurant design featuring increased drive-thru and pick-up access, technological offerings including contactless meal pick-up and an updated dine-in experience in response to COVID-19.

The company is the latest chain to announce a refreshed design adapted to the changing needs of consumers during the pandemic. The first next-generation Panera Bread is set to open in the St. Louis suburb of Ballwin this November and will include:

• An open kitchen with ovens in full view of restaurant guests;
• dual drive-thru and dedicated rapid pick-up lanes in order to enhance the dine-out process;
• the addition of contactless dine-in and delivery options with mobile notifications to guests when their meals are prepared;
• updated ordering kiosks and automated loyalty identification;
• a fully-digitized menu;
• the introduction of an updated Panera Bread logo;
• and an enhanced interior design with increased wayfinding to exterior seating at the cafe.

“We’re doubling down on what has always made Panera unique — creating human connection through caring associates and a warm, inviting environment filled with the smell of freshly-baked bread — while continuing to be a leader in digital access for the off-premise world,” says Eduardo Luz, chief brand and concept officer at the St. Louis-based company.

Panera worked with design agency BrandOpus to develop the company’s updated brand identity and logo, and ChangeUp to design the next-generation Panera restaurant concept. Further plans for a rollout of the new concept have not been announced.

As of April 27, there were 2,118 Panera Bread locations operating across 48 states and in Ontario, Canada.

—Katie Sloan

You may also like