Summer is Coming: How to Improve Your Restaurant’s Patio Space

Posted on: May 2, 2018 by RMS Hospitality

With warmer temperatures comes busier seasons for restaurants all across the country. The snow is melting and the opportunity to get outside is finally here, especially for those looking to enjoy dinner and drinks at their favorite restaurant’s patio.

Food-centric websites are already posting suggestions on where to take in a great meal or cocktail during the summertime, reminding restaurants that a great patio experience will drive business through the warmer season. Preparing for summer restaurant-goers with things like a new menu and looking into hospitality insurance programs is important, but so is figuring out ways to improve your outdoor space. Here are a few suggestions.

Cook Outside

If there’s enough space, setting up a patio cooking station will keep patrons coming back for a full-service outdoor dining experience. Restaurants can incorporate everything from grills, fryers, and outdoor pizza ovens as well as buffet stations for Sunday brunch.

Additionally, this creates transparency for diners. A big trend for restaurants as of late is to have an open kitchen where people can see their food being prepared. Continue this theme outside to enhance the overall ambiance of the patio and dining experience.

Craft Cocktail Bar

In recent years there has been a big push to enhance the everyday bar with a more scientific approach to shaking up cocktails. But short of turning a bar into a science lab, restaurants can take the spirit of this with a handcrafted cocktail menu outside.

Restaurants can install a stationary bar that can also serve food or just set up temporary bars for special events or happy hour. Plus, offering the option to get a drink outside during warm summer nights is an attractive opportunity.

Have the Right Furniture

While it’s exciting to think of all the customers coming in for a great meal outside, it’s just as important to think about providing the right seating options. Having adequate furniture, not just in quantity, but quality, is essential to any patio.

Outdoor patios at restaurants need to have durable chairs and tables, made from weatherproof and easy-to-clean materials. While it may seem economical to use the same furniture from inside, that kind of furniture (usually made from wood) won’t stand up to the test of Mother Nature.

Braving the Elements

There’s only so much that can be done to protect diners from things like bugs, heat, and summer rains. But there still needs to be some steps taken to provide as much comfort as possible for patio patrons. Make sure the patio is equipped with everything from umbrellas to tents to awnings, all meant to provide shade and allow a little respite from the heat. Big-name retail stores offer these materials solely meant for restaurant patios.

For keeping the bugs away, restaurants need to do better than hang sticky fly strips and bug lights. Consider installing screens around the patio and try not to decorate with fresh plants and flowers, as these attract bugs of all sorts.


About RMS Hospitality Group

At RMS Hospitality Group, our expertly crafted policies are written specifically for the hospitality industry. We offer custom tailored solutions to meet any venue’s specific needs. For more information, contact our knowledgeable experts today at (516) 742-8585.

Posted in: blog Hospitality Insurance

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