What to Consider Before Buying Restaurant Furniture?

Posted October 24, 2020 by in Career
rustic restaurant furniture

Out of all the things that you are going to need to do in order to set up your restaurant, the last thing you’d want to spend time on is your furniture. If this is what you’re thinking, then you might end up making a huge mistake.

Your restaurant furniture does so much more than look pretty. It’s a crucial part of your food business, one that needs thoughtful decision making. Once you begin researching on restaurant furniture, you will realize that a lot goes into deciding what kind of chairs and tables you’re going to use.

Today, we are going to take you through everything you need to know about picking the right furniture for your restaurant. We are going to focus on restaurant chairs and tables since these are the most important pieces of furniture that you will own. 

Now, there are a lot of factors that must be considered when choosing restaurant furniture. The most important being:

  • Durability
  • Comfort
  • Size
  • Aesthetics

All of these factors come together to determine how well will your furniture go with your food business.


Durability is really important since your furniture is going to be on the frontline. It will be subjected to a lot of wear and tear as it will be used by pretty much anyone who sets foot in your establishment. You need to make sure that you pick furniture that will last for a long time. Furniture that is well-built will retain its original look for longer and will also require less maintenance.

The worst thing your furniture could do is creak or wobble when someone uses it. Since your customers will interact with your furniture the most, there’s a pretty good chance that they will make a lot of assumptions about your business based on the state that your tables and chairs are in.

Restaurant furniture needs to be able to take a beating. It also needs to be able to survive against the elements. Outdoor seating areas require furniture that can withstand the environment. Having leather seats outdoors probably isn’t a good idea since sunlight can end up damaging them.

There are standards for making commercial chairs that can be used for restaurant furniture. These standards ensure that tables and chairs have a longer lifespan and are tolerant of more stress. 


Your furniture should provide customers with a place where they can remain comfortable while enjoying your food. However, your furniture shouldn’t let your customers get too comfortable either. In the restaurant business, there’s a thin line between comfort and customers spending more time in your seating than you want them to. Every restaurant has an ideal customer turnover time. This measures how long your customers should spend in your restaurant before leaving.

The customer turnover time varies for different kinds of restaurants. Some want their customers to stay for longer while others prefer if customers leave quicker. It all depends on your business model.

The comfort level that you want your furniture to offer will depend on your preferred customer turnover time. If you’re running a fast-food setup, you probably don’t want customers to spend more than 45-60 minutes in your seating. 

Most restaurants aim for a customer turnover time of around an hour. And in order to achieve this, they often have chairs with wooden seats. Saddle shaped wooden seats are comfortable enough to make your customers feel relaxed while they are having food. But they aren’t comfortable enough to encourage them to sit for long periods of time.

If you’re aiming for a longer turnover time, then you can consider going for seats with cushioning instead.


Unless you’re trying something different, you should stick to standard sizing for your restaurant’s furniture. Size rules for standard restaurant furniture require dining tables to have a height of 30”. And in order to remain proportional to your tables, your chair seat height should be 18”. The minimum width of a chair should be 16” and there should be 10-12” of legroom between the chair and table. 

You can stick to these standard sizes or use them as a reference for your seating style. Some restaurants prefer high-top seating. High-top seating is designed to provide customers with a workspace where they can have food while being productive.

High-top seating tends to have dining tables that are 42” high and a seat height of 24”. This style of seating is intentionally uncomfortable so people don’t sit around for too long.


When you’re running a restaurant, you need to focus on the ambiance as much as on the quality of what you’re serving. A good ambiance will attract more customers and encourage them to come again.

Your furniture plays a pretty important role in determining your overall ambiance. This is why you need to be thoughtful about your furniture’s aesthetics.

Ideally, you want to go for furniture that complements every other element in your restaurant. Your color scheme, fixtures, brand colors, and your décor should be taken into consideration when choosing a style for your furniture. In order to get the right ambiance, you want a holistic effect to exist between all of these elements.

Picking furniture for your restaurant can be harder than it seems. But it is worth the effort that goes into it. This is because your furniture plays a major role in determining the overall look and feel of your business. It helps customers form an opinion about your business, and it can even be used to determine what kind of crowd will visit your business.

When done right, your furniture can help improve your restaurant’s performance. It can optimize your customer turnover time and help give character to your interior. When done poorly, your furniture can make your interior feel awkward and cold. In the food business, you need to provide customers an atmosphere that makes them want to come back. Customer retention is the key to your success in this industry.