The furniture in your restaurant isn't just functional, but it helps to set the tone of the area and can contribute to your café's overall look and feeling; the pieces you choose can make the space seem fun and informal or modern and chic. While you want to choose café chairs and furniture that look good and will be durable, you also want your space to be comfortable. Note a few important tips for choosing café pieces so you are happy with them for years to come.
1. Find an aesthetic goal and stick to it
An aesthetic goal means the overall look you want to create for your restaurant. You want to have this look, theme, or tone in mind before you ever start shopping for furniture pieces, so everything will look coordinated and complementary. If you aren't thinking of the overall look of your restaurant or café, you may wind up with booths that look modern and chic but tables and chairs that have a country, homey feeling. If necessary, work with a designer that specializes in restaurants to come up with an aesthetic goal, or have pictures on hand of what you want your restaurant to look like once it's outfitted and furnished, and then always stick to pieces that will fit that theme.
2. Know the durability of materials
If you want chairs for an outdoor café, you'll need things that stand up to weather; aluminum is very lightweight and doesn't rust, so it can be a good choice. Steel is heavier and not as prone to dents and dings as aluminum, but is also prone to rust and corrosion. Wood chairs will usually need consistent sealing or other coatings to protect them from moisture. For indoor furniture, consider the thickness of vinyl or a laminate coating versus a softer, fake leather. The fake leather may feel good, but it may not hold up so well against potential rips and tears and may not be so easy to clean with a simple wipe down.
3. Remember to accommodate traffic and privacy
You want as many seats as you can fit into your restaurant in order to maximize the space with a large number of customers, but if your wait staff is always bumping into tables or patrons are subjected to conversations of persons sitting too close, they may not enjoy eating at your café and may go elsewhere. Be sure you choose the number and size of pieces that will allow space for foot traffic and for some privacy or distance between patrons.
Keep these tips in mind as you check out cafe chairs and other furniture, and you'll be able to find the best pieces for your restaurant.