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How restaurants can improve their outdoor seating area

Many people in South Africa prefer to sit outside when eating at a restaurant. This is perhaps because of the fresh air, soothing sounds of nature, relaxed atmosphere or warmth from the sun. Moms and dads prefer to keep an eye on their kids on the jungle gym, and dog owners like to stay outside with their dogs at dog-friendly restaurants. If you’re a restaurant owner with an under-utilised or poor outdoor seating area, let’s delve into some ways to improve things so that customers (along with their kids and dogs) come flocking in.   

5 ways restaurants can improve their outdoor seating area

1. Add cover

This one is a no-brainer. It’s fundamental to offer customers cover from the sun and rain without, of course, stifling the feeling of being outdoors. With this in mind,  adjustable louvre awnings are a great option because you can let the air flow in when the weather is right and close it when there is perhaps a chance of rain. Alternatively, fixed elegant awnings are ideal for outdoor areas that are not ideally suited for adjustable louvre awnings and where water and light control is important. These fixed Chromadek IBR awnings offer an option with opaque polycarbonate IBR sheets, which allow diffused light to filter into a covered outdoor seating area without forming hotspots.

2. Add comfort

Nobody will want to sit outside if there are uncomfortable chairs and awkward tables to eat at. Invest in chairs that are comfy for your patrons. After all, don’t you want them to linger longer? If it’s hot then keep things cool with fans. If it’s cold then keep things warm with heaters or offer blankets. Make it a home away from home for people. You can even have books or games available for people to read and play. 

3. Add atmosphere

Restaurants often neglect their outdoor seating area when it comes to creating a welcoming atmosphere. Make sure the chairs aren’t stacked up in a corner and the tables aren’t dusty. There should be flowers, condiments, crockery and cutlery on the tables, as this communicates that the table is available. Make sure the restaurant music can also be heard outside (or have live music) and that friendly waiters and waitresses are visible and available to assist. Don’t forget to light the candles or lanterns at night.

4. Add a jungle gym

Outdoor seating areas are highly sought after by families, especially those with small children who need space to play. Investing in a jungle gym near your outdoor seating area will certainly be a win for everyone.

5. Add water bowls

If you’re aiming to be a family-friendly restaurant then you’ll need to include the dogs as well. There are plenty of South Africans who love taking their dogs with them to a restaurant, especially after a walk. Why not welcome them with a bowl of water and a doggie biscuit menu just for them?

If you’d like to get started on improving your outdoor seating area, we’ve got you covered. Give the King Brands All Seasons team a call

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