Design firm reimagines Tropical Hut with a new, modern look

Image: Urban Matrix Builders
Image: Urban Matrix Builders

With the Tropical Hut nostalgia wave still running high, the once-forgotten and obscure fast food chain is getting a new lease on life as its age-old stores welcome a surge of new customers.

While the chain is seeing more customers flock to its branches now than any other time in recent years, a redesign doesn’t seem to be high on its priority list — most Tropical Hut diners would say that stepping into one of their outlets is like walking back in time. Hence, a design and construction firm has taken it upon themselves to reimagine what the fast food restaurant would look like with a contemporary update to its aesthetic.

Urban Matrix Builders writes, “We made a conceptual modern Filipino design for our childhood favorite Tropical Hut! Through integration of Tropical Hut’s original branding and playful approach with wooden elements, we made Tropical Hut cozier and more inviting.”

Images courtesy of Urban Matrix Builders

Based on Urban Matrix’s visuals, the Tropical Hut redesign makes the chain looks more like a modern and upscale fast-casual burger joint, with a heavy emphasis on wooden elements against its green hue.

Users online liked the redesign and agreed that the chain’s look was overdue.

“Make this happen,” one user said.

“A sleeker and cleaner design for Tropical Hut. I dig this,” another wrote.

Meanwhile, some felt the brand’s retro vibe was part of its charm.

“The wooden panels gives me (McDonald’s) vibes,” one wrote. “Maybe it would be better to make it look like a ‘60s diner.”

“I still wish there’s a hint of period-design pieces there! Actually, I would find the existing chairs still comfier than the designed one. My only concern is that the design lost its nostalgia and became too modern,” another commenter wrote, pointing out that the Escolta branch in Manila, which was used as the basis for the conceptual redesign, is located in a Beaux-Arts prewar building. “It may be a great design inspiration.”

READ: The best things to order from Tropical Hut in 2022

Love Tropical Hut? Here are 11 other nostalgic establishments that are still serving tasty old-school eats

After going viral, Tropical Hut is selling out across Manila — and is now hiring new staff to keep up with the demand

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