Gong Xi Fa Cai!
Landor staff

In the spirit of the season, Landor hopes you will embrace the Year of the Sheep and share the warm feelings by giving someone a hug.

Category: Digital & social media

Foodies united: Desserts

February 05, 2015
Part three of a series on trends in food and eateries.
Shekha Wilson
based in Landor Dubai

I recently shared the second of a three-part series about some of the treats we are seeing in today’s world of food. You can go back and try the starters or mains—or continue reading for dessert. 

Dining in made easy

Contrary to what one might expect, many restaurants are making it easier for us to stay in. By providing the DIY tools needed to make a dish, the complete ingredients perfectly portioned and packaged, or an idiot-proof recipe for success, restaurants and food shops are helping us hone our cooking skills and confidence in the kitchen.

Cook -a -box

Order a ready-to-cook dinner-in-a-box from Dubai’s Cook-a-Box. 


Browse through Toronto-based Fresh’s cookbooks for healthy inspiration.

Jones The Grocer

Grab all you need to make a gourmet feast at Melbourne’s Jones the Grocer.

Something for everyone

Gone are the days when your vegetarian friend was the only exception at the table. Today it’s not uncommon to meet people with myriad dietary requirements, from pescatarian to flexitarian, locavore, and more, so restaurants and food shops with inclusive menus and customizable options are leading the pack. 


Savour a delicious, locally-produced meal at Ubud’s trendy Locavore.

Aux Vivres

Enjoy a fresh and innovative vegan feast at Montreal’s Aux Vivres.

Coco Yogo

Dubai’s Coco Yogo sells a range of delicious, dairy-free coconut-based products. 

Conscious consumption

No matter where you are in the world, food brings people together. So why not spark a conversation, stir a debate, or communicate an idea—while everyone’s at the table? Passionate restaurateurs are finding ways to generate awareness about food and other topics by featuring ideas and information as the centerpiece of the meal. 

Slow Food Cafe

Try a meal that's aware of its origins at Amsterdam’s Go Slow Café, a project by Droog. (Photo credit: Raphael Brion)

Conflict Kitchen

Participate in a debate over Palestinian falafel at Pittsburgh’s Conflict Kitchen.


Amsterdam’s Instock reduces waste by serving meals made from supermarket leftovers. (Photo credit: Ruben de Ruijter)

Alone together 

Keen to make some new friends, discuss a topic of interest, or try a restaurant you haven’t been to before? Why not get out of your comfort zone and book a seat for one at a sharing table—you may find that being alone together is not lonely at all. 


Airbnb now books travelers a seat at locals’ dinner tables in San Francisco.

Eat With

Eat With invites you to dine in people’s homes all around the world, such as New York-based chef Shuchi. 


Extend your network while trying a new venue through Restronaut, Dubai’s social dining platform.

New formats for old favourites 

There’s nothing like the unexpected, quirky, or novel to get people talking. Our needs are also changing—we’re more time-pressured, looking for convenience at every occasion. Innovators are seizing the opportunity to create fun, yet practical ways to enjoy the foods we love.


Devour gelato, sorbetto, or yogurt on a stick from New York's Popbar, made fresh daily in its Poplab.

Farmers Fridge

Grab a jar of salad at the push of a button from Chicago’s Farmer’s Fridge vending machines.


Amsterdam’s CHCO offers pure indulgence in the form of the “Hotchocspoon” Deluxe.

The world of food is evolving every day, and these are really just a taste of the innovative, interesting, and exciting things we are seeing around the world. There’s so much more to discover—and with this in mind, I hope these three courses have left you hungry for more!


All images used courtesy of their respective authors. Permission being requested.  


Category: Customer experience

Foodies united: Mains

January 27, 2015
Part two of a three-part series on trends in food
Shekha Wilson
based in Landor Dubai

I recently shared the first of a three-part series on some of the interesting and exciting treats that we see in today’s world of food. Click here to sample part one—the starters menu—or continue reading for the main course. 

Fast and good

The equation has changed: fast food no longer equals bad food. Today, people expect fast and good, and more and more restaurants are coming to the party with nutritious ideas and options that don’t take hours to prepare. All around the world “fast slow food” is becoming the order of the day.  


Devour a good-for-you hot breakfast in less than five minutes at New York’s Essen.

6B.Wild Food Cafe

Join the raw food movement at London’s Wild Food Café.


Create your own salad from the bottom up at Richy’s in Dubai.

Tableside theatre

The food world is by no means immune to the effects of the attention economy. Restaurants are upping the spice level by turning eating into an immersive, entertaining, beyond-taste experience. Avoid awkward silences by taking your next date out for dinner with a bit of theatre on the side!

Madame Zingara

Savour a show at Madame Zingara’s Theatre of Dreams in South Africa.

Music Hall

Enjoy a night of musical acts, dancing, drinks, and snacks at Beirut’s Music Hall.


Request a passionately-delivered tequila lesson on your next visit to Dubai’s Maya.

Going nowhere

The advent of food trucks and pop-ups means that dining experiences are becoming more interesting and less formal, more dynamic and less expected, more seasonal and less complex. Look out for the latest meal on wheels or rotating snack bar and catch it while you can! 

Burger De Ville

Grab a simple yet scrumptious burger and fries on-the-go at Berlin’s Burger de Ville.

Rice Paper Scissors

San Fransisco’s Rice Paper Scissors offers a rotating menu of Vietnamese favourites.


Stay on the look out for Salt, Dubai’s pioneering food truck concept.

Liquid lovin’

Vegetables are no longer confined to salads, soups, and sides—today they’re frequently served raw and chilled in a glass. Whether you’re up for a hard-core juice fast or just a supplementary juice feast, you’re quite likely find a juice bar near you. 

Detox Delight

Globally spread Detox Delight offers a range of pressed-to-perfection juices.

Juice Press

Sip a fresh, organic, never processed veggie juice at New York’s Juice Press.


If you're in Norway or the United Arab Emirates, try one of Essentially’s cleanse programs for a healthy glow.

Something to talk about

Wondering where to go tonight? See what your friends think on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram. Through mouth-watering images and delicious words, people are switched on to what their friends are posting, and successful food joints are giving them something to talk about.


Experience having a drink through a drip while on a wheelchair at Singapore's Clinic.

Nocti Vegas

Discover the power of your senses at Berlin’s first dark restaurant Nocti Vagus.

Dinner In The SkyAdd Dinner in the sky to your bucket list, wherever you are in the world.

Let’s pause for a minute, grab a drink if you need to—but what ever you do, save room for dessert!


Images used courtesy of their respective authors. Permission being requested. 

Category: Customer experience

Foodies united: Starters

January 23, 2015
Part one of a series on trends in eateries
Shekha Wilson
based in Landor Dubai

The world of food is always fun and exciting, with new ideas and experiences emerging every day. Let’s sample a few treats that take gastronomy beyond our plates and enrich our lives by providing a five-course feast for our senses.

Let’s start with well, starters.

Work and play

Need to have a quick meeting, fancy finishing the book you’re reading, or want to get your bike fixed while grabbing a bite to eat? Restaurants are getting creative in setting up productive, eclectic, mixed-use spaces, complete with plug points, bottomless coffee, and free Wi-Fi.

1A.-Look -Mum -No -Hands

Get your bike repaired while you eat at Look Mum No Hands! in London.

1B-St -Oberholtz 

Finish that assignment at Berlin’s trendy coworking spot St Oberholz.

1C.The -Magazine -Shop

Browse while sipping on your spiced chai at the Magazine Shop in Dubai.

Celebrate culture

Culture is being served not only on plates, but also in experiences, décor, and design details that reflect the roots, customs, and little-known secrets of places and people from around the world in vibrant, fun and unexpected ways.


2A.Horn -Please 

Enjoy a playful, Indian street food experience at Melbourne’s Horn Please canteen.


Sample food and music from Cairo to Cape Town at South Africa’s Moyo food chain.


Keen to try traditional Levantine mana’eesh with a twist? Head to Zaroob in Dubai.

Sharing is caring

You’ve heard about it in many tongues—tapas, mezze, chaat, and more—but the meaning is largely the same. Snack-sized portions and sharing platters bring us together, and enable us to try a wider variety (or smaller portion) of tasty treats to suit our appetite.


3A.Superba -Snack -Bar

Sample an assortment of salads and sides at Los Angeles’ Superba Snack Bar.

 3B-Jamies Italian

Enjoy the ultimate sharing plank at international chain Jamie’s Italian.


Share the globally-inspired breads, spreads, and nibbles at Dubai’s Fume.

Get real or go home

Authentic, down-to-earth experiences mean that people can come as they are and instantly feel at home. Food is served raw, real, and a little messy; open kitchens invite transparency and participation. Say hello to your friendly neighbourhood eatery. 

4A.Vovo -Telo

Savour the sweet smell of freshly baked bread at Johannesburg’s Vovo Telo.

4B.Room -Service

Get comfortable on the blue sofa at Amsterdam’s Room Service by Droog.

4C-Tom Serg

Pop in to Dubai’s Tom & Serg for a cold, fresh OJ served in a jar.

Rise of the artisan beverage

From rustic microbreweries to responsible coffee roasteries to gourmet tearooms, original and interesting liquid concepts are on the rise. Whether it be an in-house experience or a product off the shelf, artisanal beverages offer variety, heritage, and a sense of refinement. 


Choose from over 100 varieties of beer on tap at Boston’s Meadhall. 

5B.Truth -Coffee 

Drink a single origin blend with a purpose at Cape Town’s Truth Coffee.

5C.Leopolds -of -London

Sip a perfectly brewed cup of tea at Leopold’s of London in the UK and beyond.

Let’s take a break—but save space for mains!


Images used courtesy of their respective authors. Permission being requested.


Category: Customer experience
Originality, exuberance, and sensuousness now rule the luxury segment.
Alexandra Rollandeau
based in Landor Paris

In October, Monaco hosted the 27th Luxe Pack exhibition. We from Landor headed to the airport at 5 am, just to be sure we wouldn’t miss a thing. Obviously, the Luxe Pack is all about luxury, but even at Luxe Pack not everything is luxurious. Instead of the very chic helicopter we all hoped for, we reached Monaco thanks to a free shuttle bus.

However, after an enjoyable sunny walk through Nice and Monaco, we strolled in front of the Grimaldi Forum and could, at last, start our journey in the land of luxury packaging. This gigantic mall-like building held packaging, fragrances, spirits, bags, ribbons, and papers of all kinds from 400 exhibitors.

I blinked

When you entered this design treasure trove, what struck you first was the profusion of colors and textures. Lots of packaging had vivid colors, even that of brands traditionally thought of as more discreet. For the renewal of its emblematic Vétiver fragrance, Carven offered an astounding shade of neon green; Chloé livened up its candles with red and orange; and Fendi, not known for being subtle but not also not for being innovative, showcased a gleaming redAcquarossa. All of these examples were lacquered, as if the bottle had been dipped into its own colored varnish.

Carven -Vetiver -web

Did this come from the ongoing color block trend that we’ve witnessed in, or have breakthroughs in technology made it easier for brands to deliver high-quality results? In either case, Hermès, Tiffany, and Veuve Clicquot were among the very first to bet on garish colors as signatures. While before this was owned by brands with lower standards, these brands recklessly entered the very private club of color-daring luxury brands. 

Another change was the overwhelming presence of gradients in cosmetics. Gradients are difficult to obtain, especially on glass and metal. That is why before only a few, well established brands such as Stella McCartney and Lancôme brought them to the shelves. But today, gradients have drifted down to niche products, mainly because innovations in technologies are reinventing the cues for modern luxury, encouraging brands to get rid of the usual minimalist black, white, and gold and take on new horizons.

I touched

The numerous examples of highly textured packaging tended to prove that minimalism is over, and that originality, exuberance, and sensuousness now rule the segment. Lots of packaging also played with unexpected textures, as pioneered by Burberry London a few years ago. We found a Moët bottle with its own armor and chainmail, and even hairy/grassy bottles from Selective Line. These textures really made you actually want to seize the product, touch it, and play with it. That was the whole point: To differentiate from the competition of course, but also to be remembered by offering a unique experience.

Les -Parisiens -web

Another big trend in this exhibition was the introduction of natural materials in package design. Some of this stemmed form ecological concerns—every paper manufacturer would first present its range of recycled material. Italian firm Favini makes paper out of food wastes such as olives, cherries, and lavender. Cosmetics brands opted for wood—from carved mascara bottles, to Armand Basi’s Wild Forest fragrance that shows perfume through a tiny glass window, to Guerlain’s Les Parisiens series. Wood’s natural origins make it more emotionally resonant than metal or glass, again showing that brands are betting on more emotional messaging.

I wondered

This year’s packaging also revealed a growing trend for cut and reveal in luxury. Catwalks were all about provocative cuts and see-through materials this year, starting with Valentino. The cut and reveal trend combines unexpected textures, lures the consumers’ attention, and leaves them full of curiosity and desire to actually interact with the packaging. Where sensuousness is all about touching and feeling, cut and reveal relies on sight to ignite desire and leave memories. 

Champagne brands mastered the cut out: Moët brought its leopard pattern to life by playing with negative space, while Perrier-Jouët uncovered only a small part of its product with its Belle Époque pack. Fragrances followed suit, and Atelier Flou’s bottles, inspired by Arabic patterns, were designed to mask more than protect, showing the product as a treasure.

Beyond cut outs that are part of the design itself, brands now also print on the inside of the packaging (Black Bowler Hat Gin or Tigre Blanc for spirits or the limited edition of Yves Saint Laurent’s L'homme libre for fragrances).

Fragrance brands even customized the spray canister like Balenciaga did for Rosabotanica, or highlighted it and placed it at the center of the design. Lancôme imagined a purple rose for its fragrance Trésor Midnight Rose. Details are, more than ever, the object of special attention, and every piece of the packaging—even the most technical parts—now give life to inspiring interpretations.

Rosabotanica -web

Package design today needs to be purposeful. Agile thinking is required to achieve elegance without slipping into opulence. Cartier’s new design for its mythical fragrance La Panthère is the perfect example.

 Cartier -Panthere -web

Cartier offers a suspended sculpture of its iconic panther head, solely engraving the brands’ name on the bottleneck. No printing whatsoever. No tags, either. Only the essential, yes, but sublimed. This packaging is a proof that traditional cues are over; that brands now have to think of packaging design as an art, as an expression.


All images copyright of their respective authors. Permission being requested.


Category: Packaging design
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