During the 1990’s, the themed restaurant and clubs era swept the world, with every retail developer looking at themed restaurants as a way to increase consumer appeal of retail facilities in destination locations.
Themed restaurants included celebrity-backed concepts such as Fashion Cafe (with models Campbell, MacPherson, and Schiffer), Planet Hollywood (Schwarzenegger, Stallone, and Willis), and the Official All-Star Sports Cafe (Agassi, Seles, and Gretzky), among many others.
Pure brand-based concepts included ESPN Cafe, Billboard Live!, Disney Stores, NASCAR Cafe, and dozens of others.
Still other themed concepts were based on intriguing concepts and/or environments such as Jekyll & Hyde Club, Drink!, Discovery Zone FunCenters, Dave & Buster’s, and Block Party.
Most of the venues created during the themed restaurant era enjoyed some consumer success but ultimately failed as consumers moved to the next concept.
This chronology includes only some of the more notable entries in this product category from major players, and is not a representative list of all theme restaurant openings during the time period shown. There were many more attempted concepts in the themed restaurants and clubs era. As this was all happening, there were also the themed “monobrand” retail stores that also swept the world. Check out our complete history of first units in the location-based entertainment industry on this website.