McDonald's: Soon-to-Be Chi-Chi Destination

Burger joint goes yuppie with 'linger zones'
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted May 19, 2010 1:49 PM CDT
McDonald's: Soon-to-Be Chi-Chi Destination
A sign outside a McDonald's advertises Cappuccino, Friday, Jan. 22, 2010, in Chicago.   (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)

You know those giant golden arches thrust into the sky on a pole in front of your local McDonald's? Kiss 'em goodbye. They're just one of the casualties of an upcoming total redesign of the McDonald's franchise, Salon reports. Gone, too, will be the red, double-sloped roofs, and the cafeteria-like interior. In their place will be brick or stone exteriors, and interiors full of “linger zones” featuring armchairs, TVs, WiFi, and more.

The goal is to reinvent McDonald's until it looks like a “fast casual” joint—think Five Guys or Chipotle. The design also promises to be customizable for different locales. The idea is to counteract some of the anti-McDonald's backlash—and get around building codes in high-class neighborhoods. “You're never going to convince people that McDonald's isn't a mass restaurant,” says one food consultant, but you can "create a warmer feeling." BusinessWeek has pictures of the new look here. (More McDonald's makeover stories.)

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