Restaurant owners have a lot of options at their disposal when it comes to seating. It can be hard to separate the wheat from the chaff to find seating options for customers that will be both comfortable and stylish. Read on to find some tips on how to choose the right restaurant bar stools.
Start by Measuring Height
Bar stools come in three heights: counter, bar, and extra tall. Before investigating options, restaurant owners should measure the height of their counters or tables from the floor to ensure they choose stools that will accommodate the existing furniture and fixtures.
The old axiom, measure twice, cut once applies here, except there will be no cutting involved. Just make sure to measure everything twice to avoid winding up with improperly sized stools. Reputable vendors typically have return policies in place, but it’s a huge hassle for everyone involved to return dozens of bar stools.
Choose the Right Seating Size
Bigger bar stools can be better in terms of comfort and ability to accommodate larger patrons, but they also take up more space. Most seats measure 15, 17, or 21 in width. Most modern business owners prefer slightly larger seats even if it means they will take up more space. Larger seats make it more comfortable for diners of all sizes to sit and enjoy a meal or a drink with friends, and comfort makes a big difference when it comes to customer satisfaction.
It’s better to have too many stools than too few, but most restaurant owners are working on budgets, so they don’t have the luxury of buying an entire backup set. To determine the number of stools required, follow the industry standard for spacing and allow between 26 and 30 inches of space between the stools centers. This leaves plenty of room for patrons to eat, drink, and be merry.
Figuring out quantities for tables is easier. Determine how many people the table will need to seat, then purchase enough stools to accommodate all the diners. Just make sure to buy a few extras to have on hand in case a stool breaks.
Choose the Right Material
Most bar stools come with either metal frames or wood frames. Wood offers a more traditional look, while metal is a better fit for contemporary establishments. This is a good place to start when narrowing down options since most restaurant owners already have a well-established interior design.
Look for Comfortable Features
It’s always best to buy bar stools with plenty of padding. Restaurant owners who plan to use their stools for diners as well as drinkers may want to look into other comfortable features like well-padded backrests, arms, and high-quality upholstery like leather or modern microfiber.
Swivel or Lift
Want adjustable-height bar stools? There are two main options: swivel seats or gas lifts. Both can help to accommodate patrons of different heights and sizes, so these features are worth the extra money.
The Bottom Line
The right bar stools will improve the restaurant’s aesthetics and create a comfortable experience for diners and drinkers. Take the time to evaluate all options, and don’t prioritize cost over essential features. There are plenty of high-quality stools out there to fit almost any budget.