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Kabab Gets a Facelift

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Kabab, an inexpensive fast-food Lebanese restaurant, put an emphasis on design to update its image; one look at the "before" and "after" photos and you'll see how far they've come.

While working with this new chain (which now has five franchises), designer Aboudi Hassoune created an efficient, bright and contemporary space that is a radical change from the depressing and kitschy places often found in this type of establishment.

Aboudi Hassoune is completing his last semester in design at the University of Montréal. He worked on this project last year, when he already had a foot in the industry and came across the owners of this restaurant. They also entrusted him with the design of a new sign and logo.

He used Lebanese cuisine for his inspiration, although it may not be immediately obvious in the decor. Of course, the brochette and grilled meat figure in the logo but they also set the tone for the colours and textures that he chose: a glistening countertop and steel rail, baked ceramic tiles, neutral shades and dark wood are all reflections of the colours of the meals.

The space is well divided: one side is reserved for the service counter, while the other is used for the dining area, framed in by a series of partitions that provide intimacy without obstructing the flow of traffic. 

From the outside, these panels installed at an angle draw the attention to a bright orange porcelain wall that adds visual depth to the space. Without going overboard in luxury, Kabab proves that good fast food can come with a nice décor. All it needed was the intelligence and talent of a designer, even a young one.

5171 Côte-des-Neiges

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