Tips for Remodeling Your Restaurant

Tips for Remodeling Your Restaurant

If it's time for you to update your restaurant, you might be frustrated about where to start. There are several steps to a remodeling project, and you want to have a good sense of what you want to accomplish so that you can minimize the time that you will need to have your doors closed to the public. To help you plan, here are a few tips on remodeling your restaurant. 

Create Your Budget 

For any remodeling project, you need to have a clear idea of how much you are willing and able to spend, as well as a strong idea of how much each project within your remodel will cost. To get an idea, go out and collect bids for the various projects that you will need contractors to do. You will also want to find the best deals on materials and decorations that you plan to add to the dining area. Also, define if the front of the house is the only area that you need to remodel. Is the kitchen lacking anything that is truly slowing down your cooks and waitstaff? If you have a bar, is the space and design adequate for your bartenders and your patrons? 

Define the Projects and Create a Floor plan 

If your restaurant has grown, you might find it necessary to rearrange your floor plan to maximize seating. Similarly, if more patrons are preferring to sit at the bar, you might find it beneficial to expand the seating around the bar. If you plan on making significant changes to your floor plan, you'll have extra work to do. Whenever you change the floor plan, you need to account for traffic flow for your guests and waitstaff, and you also need to double-check codes to ensure that you are in compliance with ADA regulations. 

Talk With Contractors to Set a Timeline 

If you're doing minimal remodeling, you might be able to do it all without actually shutting down the restaurant. But if you're anticipating that you will need to shut down the restaurant for a few days or a week, setting up your contractors in a timely fashion will help you keep on your timeline. Which contractors need to be in first? Can some be working on their portions of the remodel simultaneously? If you won't have to shut down the store, are your contractors available to come in when the store is closed or at least at slower times of the day? 

Choose Your Colors and Design 

Whenever you are doing a remodel, you will want to update the materials of your furniture. Just like any other business, interior decorations in restaurants go in and out of style. If your dining area has decor from the 90s, it's time to choose updated upholstery and furniture. Take some time to browse through photographs of other restaurants to make it easier to find a style that will work well for your restaurant's concept. Among the items that you should be looking at are window treatments, chairs and barstools, booths, flooring, and lighting. 

Selecting Furniture 

If your dining room furniture is looking old, breaking, or simply doesn't suit the needs of your restaurant and patrons, it's time to purchase new furniture. It's an investment that is well worth the cost. Guests notice details, and they'll be more likely to become regulars if you present attractive and comfortable seating. Vinyl upholstery is popular for bar stools and booth benches because it is easy to clean. If you want to add fabric to your design, consider having it put on the backrest because this area is less prone to being spilled on. You'll also want to decide on the preferences for the frames of chairs and tables. Both metal and wood are popular options for the frames of tables and chairs. You should select materials for your tables that are durable and attractive, but the exact materials that you choose will depend on where you are placing them. Most often, for outdoor dining spaces, metal is used for both the tables and chairs because wood is not suitable for outdoors. 

Choosing Flooring 

Carpet can become dirty, so many flooring choices are either a hard material, such as vinyl, laminate, or concrete, or they use a combination of hard surfaces and carpet. The vinyl or laminate flooring is generally run along the heavily trafficked areas, and the carpet is installed underneath seating areas. 

Choosing Lighting 

The lighting that you choose will actually set the stage for the entire mood of your restaurant. Do you want to create the feeling of an intimate setting or a bright and entertaining place where your patrons feel comfortable kicking back and laughing loudly? The lighting that you choose will set the ambiance. There are many kinds of fixtures that you can choose. Wall sconces can be used to highlight a piece of art on the wall and pendant lights can be installed over individual tables to ensure that each table has adequate but intimate lighting. If you want an atmosphere where the attention is drawn around the entirety of the room, consider plenty of overhead lighting. 

There are so many details to plan for when you are remodeling your restaurant, and planning ahead by talking to the right people will make you feel much more comfortable when it's time to bring in the contractors. Also, break your large remodeling project into smaller ones for a less stressful experience.