Nowadays, all manner of commercial settings are available for potential customers to frequent, ranging from pubs and bars to cafes, coffee shops, hotels and restaurants. The offering within all of these venues is somewhat different, however, creating a memorable experience (for all the right reasons) depends on a variety of factors, including food, ambiance, décor and comfortable contract restaurant furniture.
We’ve mentioned it time and time again in previous blogs and downloads, but that won’t deter from us reiterating the following point – It’s important to make sure your furniture is of contract/commercial quality and can withstand the test of time in what is bound to be a somewhat busy environment. Furniture is an investment and therefore you should avoid buying non-commercial items. The price of contract restaurant furniture reflects its ability to handle wear and tear for years with little maintenance and no need for replacement.
We’ve all experienced the annoying wobbly chair or table leg and there’s nothing more frustrating when you’re dining than having your table moving to and fro. I actually had an experience just recently whereby the table was so poor that a whole glass of apple juice tipped over my two year old daughter. It was extremely frustrating and thank goodness it wasn’t a hot drink. It was one of the most uncomfortable dining experiences I’ve ever been in as I had to spend the entire meal making sure things didn’t tip or fall, which when you have young children makes for a very stressful time!
Type of furniture
There’s a huge amount of furniture on offer from side chairs, armchairs, tub chairs, sofas and bar stools to dining tables and poseur tables to name but a few. Decide on the need and then choose your furniture. For example, chairs with arms can be somewhat more comfortable than those without, however they take up more space and so it’s important they feature in the correct environment.
It’s vital to have a decent back support to ensure the posture of your diners isn’t compensated and customers are able to relax comfortably. Also think about the fabric on your seating – Is the chair upholstered or is it plain wood, aluminium or plastic? Will your diners be able to sit through a three course meal comfortably? If it’s upholstered, is it easy to clean without interrupting a customer’s comfort?
Are your table and chairs of complementing heights or is your chair too low and your table too high, resulting in a very awkward eating pose and a very unpleasant experience for your diners? Make sure that there is plenty of room for your customers to sit comfortably with adequate room above their legs, so they aren’t squashed in nor having too far to reach for their meal!
The type of setting you’ve opted to visit and the overall size of the venue, will obviously have an impact on design and layout. If for example you’re a fine dining establishment, your layout will be somewhat different to that of a fast food setting. For example, tables will be placed closer in the latter – If diners were as cramped in a formal setting, then this would negatively affect their overall dining experience and as a result, they would feel uncomfortable and less likely to frequent your venue again.
Round tables encourage conversation, whereas square and rectangular tables are more ‘space efficient’. Lots of venues have two-seater tables which prevents leaving two empty seats at a four-person table and are perfect for sliding together to cater for larger parties.
It’s important to utilise the space you have by purchasing the correct contract restaurant furniture to provide the most memorable experience and for all the right reasons. Layout really does form part of the diner’s experience and so shouldn’t be taken for granted.
As you can see from the above, there’ a lot to think about in terms of creating a comfortable environment for your diners and if you get this right, you will ensure repeated custom and an increased stay from existing customers (within reason) so hopefully they will spend more money with you on more courses and more drinks!