It’s warming up outside, and that means it’s time to start thinking about your outdoor café space. Not every restaurant has the luxury of operating in suitable weather throughout the year, so when the sun shines, you have to make the most out of it, including getting your outdoor café space summer-ready.
Clean and clear the outdoor area
The first step is to make sure your outdoor area is clean and clear. Before setting up tables and chairs, you want to make sure that the outdoor space is nice and presentable. This means sweeping the floors, wiping down surfaces, and removing cobwebs or debris. You may also want to consider power washing the area to really get rid of any dirt and grime build-up. If you have furniture, make sure it’s in good condition and free of any dirt or stains.
Create a seating area and add furniture
Another important aspect of an outdoor café space is creating a comfortable seating area for customers. However, your outdoor café seating space is not complete without furniture. But before you start shopping for tables and chairs, you need to consider the size of your space and the number of customers you’re expecting. You also want to make sure that your cafe furniture is durable and can withstand weather conditions. Once you’ve taken all of these factors into consideration, you can start shopping for the perfect furniture for your outdoor café space.
In addition to making sure your outdoor café space is physically clean, you also want to make sure it looks inviting. One way to do this is by adding some greenery. Potted plants or flowers can brighten up any space, and they can also help create a more relaxed atmosphere for your customers. You can also use hanging baskets or create a small herb garden to add some life to your outdoor café space.
If you have space, living walls are popular and inexpensive at the moment.
Think about lighting
Great is key for an outdoor café space, especially if you plan to operate your outdoor space into the evening. You want to make sure that your customers will be able to see when they’re sitting outside, and you also want to create a certain ambiance. String lights are a popular and relatively inexpensive option for outdoor café spaces. But if you want something a little more permanent, you can consider installing solar-powered lights or LED lights. You can also use lanterns to create a more relaxed atmosphere.
Consider adding some heaters
You may want to think about some heaters to your outdoor café space. This way, your customers will be able to enjoy their time outside even when the temperature starts to drop. There are a few different types of heaters that you can choose from, so make sure you pick what is right for your business. If you decide to go in the gas heater direction, you need to ensure it’s properly vented and that you have all the necessary safety equipment on hand.
Add proper shading
If your outdoor café space is in direct sunlight and you’re planning on operating your outdoor café space during the day, you need to make sure you have some form of shading. Umbrellas are a popular and relatively inexpensive option for shading. But if you want something a little more permanent, you can consider installing awnings or pergolas. These will provide more coverage and help create a more inviting atmosphere for your customers. Shading will not only make your space more comfortable for customers, but it will also help keep food and drinks cooler.
Speak to your drinks suppliers, they often have stock to give away promotionally.
Install a water fountain or pond
A water feature is a great way to add a touch of relaxation to your outdoor café space. The water feature can be a fountain, a pond, or even a small waterfall. The sound of the water will help create a more calming atmosphere for your customers. It’s also a great way to add some visual interest to your space. If you decide to go with a pond, you need to ensure it’s properly installed and maintained.
Consider the pet policy
Many people want to bring their pets with them when they go out to eat. But not everyone is comfortable with animals in restaurant spaces. If you’re considering allowing pets in your outdoor café space, you need to make sure you have a clear pet policy. This policy should include things like where pets are allowed to sit and what type of food and water bowls you’ll provide.
Don’t forget the inside!
While you’re focused on getting your outdoor café space ready for summer, don’t forget about the inside of your restaurant! You want to make sure that your indoor space is just as welcoming and inviting as your outdoor space. A great way to do this is to keep the door between the indoor and outdoor spaces open so that customers can move freely between the two areas.
Now that you know how to get your outdoor café space summer-ready, it’s time to start planning for it. With a little bit of effort, you can turn your outdoor café space into the perfect summer hangout spot for your customers. So what are you waiting for? Get started today!
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