Better acoustics with Heraklith®

Heraklith® helps restaurants to win back customers with better acoustics

As restaurants begin to open again after months of being closed due to COVID-19 restrictions, many are turning to better acoustics to win back their customers.

According to 13,000 diners voting in the annual Zagat survey of restaurant trends in the United States, noise is the biggest annoyance when eating out. In the UK, the Action on Hearing Loss Charity says that 80% of visitors to restaurants, cafes and bars had left early due to excessive noise.

One of the main culprits has been the shift from plush opulence to fashionable minimalism. The trend for minimalist exposed interiors featuring large areas of brick, concrete and marble, and open kitchens, has resulted in less use of sound-absorbing soft furnishings, table linen and carpets.

The increased noise levels are often made even worse by what’s known as the Lombard Effect, which occurs when people unconsciously increase the loudness levels of their voices to be understood.

In some countries the problem has become so bad that restaurant reviewers have started carrying decibel monitors with them, and location apps have been launched to help people find the quietest restaurant in their neighbourhood.

Governments, concerned that shouting increases the risk of spreading infections from air droplets, are also appealing to reduce sound levels.

Eating out is something to be enjoyed, not something to be endured. The main reason people go out to eat is to enjoy the company and conversation of friends and family. But, if you can’t hear what’s being said, that takes away a lot of the pleasure.

Maro Puljizević Knauf Insulation’s Acoustics Project Manager at the company’s Core Research and Development Department

Heraklith’s wood wool panels are now proving a favourite solution to reduce noise levels very effectively. Many restaurants, cafes and bars, are retrofitting ceilings and walls with Heraklith panels as they blend in perfectly with modern styles, uncluttered calm, and a soft environment. They are also used extensively as integral features in the design of new restaurants, as well as to help insulate noise to neighbouring properties.

Typical of those used are Heraklith® Tektalan A2 panels which combine wood wool with a rock mineral wool insulation. This best-in-class Heraklith panel has outstanding fire-resistance, and thermal and acoustic performance.

Fast delivery times and the ease of installation are also making Heraklith panels a popular choice.

For more examples, of how our wood wool panels are used to create better acoustics please see our full collection of references and case studies. If you would like to know more, please contact us.