Bad Lighting drives customers out of Restaurants

11th September, 2014

Pension Dolina Restaurant


Believe it or not, bad lighting can effectively ruin a restaurant’s business.


According to a survey by npower, 88% of brits said lighting in venues such as pubs or restaurants would affect how much they enjoy a date or romantic meal, and 71% said lighting is an important consideration when picking a venue for a date, rating above other factors as price (66%) and music (53%).


In fact good lighting increases the chance of customers returning to a venue again and with a whopping 87% stating they would pick a venue they have been to before for a date, establishments who get their lighting wrong may lose some customers forever.


Nearly a third of survey participants have walked out of a business such as a restaurant or bar because of bad lighting, where it was either too bright or not bright enough.


At 299 lighting, we calculate the correct lighting levels for various industries with our in-house design team, to ensure our projects are successful and our clients are happy with our service. Lighting even has to match the different foods served at different restaurants, for example light bar food goes with soft lighting while sushi looks better in a brighter light.


To make sure that the lighting on your project is correct, get in touch with us to see how we can help specify the right products for you. Call us on 0117 942 2512 to find out more or fill in our enquiry form on our contact page.


Click on a link below to see some our experience with bar and restaurant projects



The meaning of BREEAM & SKA

4th September, 2014



There are many terms and abbreviations that may be confusing when working on projects with other companies. As a Lighting design and supply company, we want our customers to feel in the know. If you’ve heard of BREEAM and SKA then you may need some clarification on what it means, please read on.


What is BREEAM?


BREEAM is the assessment method used for sustainable building design, construction and operation and is the most widely recognised evaluations on building performance. BREEAM is intended to encourage designers, clients and others to;


  • Think about low carbon and low impact design
  • Minimise energy demands created by a building before considering energy efficiency and low carbon technologies


Aspects that are essential to BREEAM criteria include energy and water use, the internal environment, pollution, transport, materials, waste, ecology and management processes.


Having a certified BREEAM building can give you the following benefits;


  • market recognition for low environmental impact buildings,
  • confidence that tried and tested environmental practices are incorporated in the building,
  • inspiration to find innovative solutions that minimise the environmental impact,
  • a benchmark that is higher than regulation,
  • a system to help reduce running costs and improve working and living environments,
  • A standard that demonstrates progress towards corporate and organisational environmental objectives.


What is SKA?


SKA rating is a certification intended for existing building fit-outs and are supported by RICS as well as many other organisations in the property industry. Rating varies depending on the ‘good practice’ measures covering energy and CO2 emissions, waste, water, materials, pollution, wellbeing and transport. With lighting, it is important that both light quality and energy efficiency meet the criteria along with the suitable controls. With a wide range of high efficiency fittings available from 299 Lighting, requirements are easy to meet and we can assist with the relevant benchmarks.


299 Lighting have supplied high efficiency light fittings in the past for BREEAM certified buildings such as the Chancellor’s building at Bath University. Get in touch with us on 0117 942 2512 to find out how we can help you achieve a BREEAM certified building with our in-house design team.


Bristol is the European Green Capital for 2015

14th August, 2014

Bristol Green Image




Bristol is the European Green capital for 2015, an award to promote and reward efforts by cities that improve the environment. This excites us at 299 Lighting, based in the heart of Bristol, we believe that our energy efficient lighting products can contribute to make the city greener, happier and better for everybody. Organisations of all shapes and sizes are keen to show their green credentials in preparation for next year. With Cabot Circus being the first retail-LED urban regeneration scheme it achieved an excellent environmental rating under the BREEAM scheme.

The use of high efficiency lamps is an important aspect to making offices, shops, restaurants and residential areas greener for when Bristol takes the Green Capital crown next year. Get in touch with 299 lighting to see how we can help with your project.

Lack of LED Lighting in Retail

11th August, 2014


Durasafe-New Showroom 7


According to building research body BRE, LED products still only account for a tiny proportion of lighting in retail. They estimate the LED products make up less than five percent of lighting in the sector. We look into why this is the case, as the use of LED can bring many benefits to the retail industry.


Studies show that the retail industry are one of the biggest energy consumers and that 43 percent of electricity consumed was for lighting. With the less efficient T8 lamps still being the most commonly used lighting technology in retail, it is imperative that LEDs are used to their advantage.


The use of LED lamps can not only save money on electricity consumption, but can also improve sales through the brand image and providing new opportunities for accent lighting. It is thought that some retailers who are still not convinced by LED have not been shown the right products.


Get in touch with 299 lighting to gain some more information on LED products to create the right design for your project.


Products recommended for Retail…


Why Acoustic Luminaires?

25th July, 2014



If you didn’t receive this week’s newsletter, you will be delighted to know 299 Lighting are now supplying a sound absorbing luminaire range. These exciting new products from our German manufacturer Lightnet, are a solution to a high level of noise in open offices and public spaces. The new acoustic range is a result of work with Akustik plus GmbH, a specialist in acoustics, offering the best available materials and experience in the industry. There are a wide range of material finishes for the sound absorbing luminaires, from contemporary white to a dark walnut finish.


Why the need for Acoustic Luminaires?

Although acoustics is often given a low priority over other project goals, it is still important to give a satisfactory noise level in workplaces or public spaces. Noise can come from outside traffic, machinery such as photocopiers or telephones and voices within the workspace. For example, a public space such as a library, minimal noise is of great importance and sound absorbing luminaires can help achieve this.


How do they work?

If sound is not absorbed, it will continue to bounce around off of walls until drained of energy. In a room with hard walls, this bouncing can go on for quite some time. To put simply, the porous material in the luminaire traps and converts the sound to a very small amount of heat. This reduces the echoes reflecting in a room, making it a quieter environment.


How Acoustic Luminair works


Click here to take a look at one in our range of sound absorbing luminaires now available. If you would like more information, give us a call today on 0117 942 2512.

LED Growth Vs Incandescent

29th April, 2014


Do we truly understand why our governments are pushing out incandescent bulbs and driving us to buy the more expensive replacement LED versions? Are we getting value for money or are we falling for another marketing scam?


To begin with, why are incandescent bulbs been or being phased out, the US department of energy have published figures from the phase out and promote the fact that the country will be saving up to $6 billion by 2015 from the removal of 100v and 60v incandescent bulbs. This a huge saving to the home owner as well as an environmental positive in a world filled with green conscious people. This push forward replicates our governments want for the world to become more environmentally conscious.


The Figures are being published to show the massive saving the ban could create for the household, but the argument is what should buy now your £1 60W incandescent bulb are not available. LED is being pushed to be the future for light


ing but can the consumer understand the massive jump in price? There are now scary reports that some LED alternatives are not what the packaging says and some are just plain dangerous. Even the Daily Mail is picking up on the fears of the consumer saying through their independent testers that one in four of the LED bulbs don’t replicate the figures shown on the box for lifespan. Lux Magazine is also backing that some of the bulbs are not


This is painting a bad name for LED bulbs but most importantly shows that buying cheap means buying twice. If you scroll through the world of YouTube you will find multiple videos of people showing how dangerous some China imported LED lamps are, some lacking basic electrical knowledge and live wires are being attached directly to the front plate. Just plain dangerous.all what they seem, one expert even jokes that he has seen bulbs with both 30,000 hours and 50,000 hours lifespan on the same box.


Ok, yes the LED market is a bit scary right now but I do truly believe that LED is the correct direction for the UK to move into. Yes, right now people are trying to jump on the band waggon, produce faster and sell even quicker. But, the correct lighting companies have produced a reputation for excellence through decades of experience, and now are using the experience to design and produce the future for lighting with LED. This is what I believe can be the pivot point of the ban, by knowing what you are buying.




The most important message is to know what you are buying and only buy from trusted manufactures.

Future of Lighting? – Philips’ OneSpace

1st April, 2014


Philips has now been named in the top 50 of most innovative companies for 2014 by Fast Company, but they have now released the concept of ‘OneSpace’ which could allow them to climb the ladder even faster. In 1964 Issac Asimov for the New York Times wrote about predicting the future with his ideas about what will be shown by the 2014 World’s Fair. The amazing thing about the article is that there is a glare of truth about what he said in specific reference to the reveal of Philips’ new product.


‘One thought that occurs to me is that men will continue to withdraw from nature in order to create an environment that will suit them better’ – the ‘OneSpace’ does exactly that. The light that is created during a perfectly delicate overcast day is exactly what the ‘OneSpace’ proposes to replicate in the indoor environment. The made-to-measure panel system is designed to create a uniform, glare free light which will cast no shadows.


The ceiling which is most commonly left out by architects as an important design element of a building can now be enlightened to make it a feature of any project. The product is being suggested to be used in areas which are formidably known for poor lighting. Phillips now claim they can ‘deliver glare-free LED light that eliminates shadows completely so you can view objects in their true light’ for areas such as car showrooms, retail stores or airports.


The seamless panel’s sizing starts from 2.4m2 and is available up to 3m by 10m. The ‘OneSpace’ is manufactured using LED lights with a diffused cloth in order to create the authentic looking natural light. It will be supplied with a colour temperature of 4000k, but Phillips say that the panel can be adjusted between 3000-5000K to achieve the perfect look for a room. The light also scores 80+ in CRI, reiterating the idea of the natural looking light the panel is producing.


Is the future of lighting being create by Philips or just another concept which will be lost in the past?


Philips_OneSpace_2 Close up of OneSpace

Lighting In a Retail Showroom – Durasafe, Singapore

6th March, 2014


A view of the frontage of Durasafe


Durasafe is a fantastic safety wears retail company based in Singapore; they brought to us a very interesting project. It was set up directly with the client in late 2013; this was an exciting time for 299 as it would be our first export to an Asian country. The initial stages of the project were to look through the CAD drawings and decipher which fixtures would work best and meet the client’s requirement.


For our lighting designer, this left him a large scope for creativity, the brief set by the client was to use architectural lighting to enhance the aesthetics and create a contemporary looking showroom. The fixtures would need to create an environment that the Durasafe customers would feel accentuated the feeling of safety but also help in the selling process.


The two suspended fixtures chosen for the project were the Sark profile system and Clyde profile. The style of the Clyde meant it was an ideal feature pendant to be placed in the waiting room; the client expressed strong appreciation towards the quality of this product. The Sark profile is a direct/in-direct feature which as you can see is used above the workstations in the showroom, the high ceiling have been illuminated by the in-direct light and create a real feeling of space within the Durasafe showroom. Both these fitting were delivered in a custom RAL colour matching the clients specification.


As you can see from the images the project has been a huge success. Here at 299 we are very excited to see further project to being created out of Singapore and hope we can work with a client like Durasafe again.


To find further information on the product used follow the links below:



The use of the Sark fitting in the Durasafe showroom


Helping you to understand more about lighting – CRI

25th February, 2014


In the last post we had a brief look into the definition of colour temperature and how it is best used in varying locations. Today’s post will be looking into colour rendering index or CRI.


I feel the best way to describe the CRI rating of a lamp, is its ability to light objects as realistic to daylight as possible. Listed below are the three defining features of good CRI;


-       Produces a great variety of colours

-       Creates contrasting shades of colour

-       The objects look naturally lit


The CRI of a lamp does not always coincide with an object looking the same as how it looks in daylight. To create this you have to balance both the CRI and the correct colour temperature. For example if we look at a light source such as a candle, it has a CRI of 100 meaning it will create the differences in the chromaticity’s of 8 CIE standard colour samples (or in simple terms the eight distinctive colours in the light spectrum). Even though a candle flame has the ability to show the differences, its colour temperature is very low (1700ºK). This means it struggles to show the blue colours in objects giving a less realistic light. A colour temperature that is going to match natural daylight best is between 5000ºK-6000ºK with a CRI of over 95.


Even though CRI is usually measured between 1-100 there are some instances where the CRI comes out as a negative figure, for example low-pressure Sodium lighting. If we are looking at lamps that are more likely to be used around the house, a typical residential LED fitting or bulb usually has a CRI of 80+. When testing for the CRI, the lamps are split into various groups called Correlated colour Temperatures (CCT) to be tested at different temperatures. The groups are split into three groups depended on the temperature range up to 2700ºK, 2700ºK – 6000ºk and over 6000ºK. If this is under 2700ºK a Blackbody radiator is used in place of natural daylight as the control.


I hope this post has increased you knowledge a bit more in lighting terminology, more helpful posts to follow…


Energy efficient LED office lighting

12th February, 2014





Gaur is a high quality LED downlighter that includes a Philips Fortimo DLMi module. At 2000 lumens it has an efficacy of 74lm/W and at 1100 lumens produces 79lm/W. Supplied complete with a driver, and is available in both 3000K and 4000K. Gaur is supplied with a white die-cast aluminium bezel and a faceted reflector to provide a smooth concentrated beam. This LED downlighter can be used pretty much anywhere when it comes to office lighting, from circulation areas to meeting rooms and reception areas etc.

Another great feature of this product is it’s wide variety of accessories that are available, for example a choice of diffusers as well as IP rated and anti tamper bezels.  3-hour emergency version optional.






The Glaven is a recessed 600 x 600mm modular LED fitting. Its matt white body is made from sheet steel and has an aluminium heatsink for passive cooling. The lumen output is 3000lm, 36W consumption and has an efficacy of 83lm/W. This fitting is non dimmable as standard and has optional DALI dimming on request. The Glaven is an ideal alternative to the fluorescent  fittings usually used in meeting rooms, reception areas and corridors as it is energy efficient and has up to 50,000hrs lifetime. Available in 3000K and 4000K colour temperatures and 3hr emergency version.


Talla LED


If you are working on a high end office project and are looking for a contemporary light fitting that combines efficiency and style, then this is the product for you. Talla is a soft architectural LED fitting that can be surface mounted or suspended and is available in 3000K and 4000K colour temperatures. It has an efficacy of up to 120lm/W, an extruded aluminium body and opal diffuser that emits a soft light. Supplied complete with driver however DALI dimming is available on request and 3hr emergency when required. Talla LED is a perfect feature light for large cafeterias, stairwells and reception areas.




The Dufas is a slim-line linear LED profile fitting with an opal diffuser. It has a low power consumption of 70W and an overall efficacy of 63.6lm/W. Dufas is available in 3000K and 4000K and comes with a integrated driver as standard, however DALI dimming can be supplied on request as well as a 3hr emergency pack.


This architectural fitting is perfect for offices with high ceilings and exposed surfaces as it can be suspended as well as surface mounted. With a lifetime of 50,000hrs and Philips control gear it’s an ideal product for a high end office fit out market.