Home-based restaurants are quite the trend these days. Chefs launch their business right in the comfort of their home and target community members they already know quite well.

It’s an advantageous arrangement for them especially during the early stages of the business when they go with a “by reservation” only system. They get to control costs, as well as properly evaluate how much work operations entail.

It is worth pointing out, however, that setting up a restaurant at home comes with its own unique challenges. First of all, it is imperative to clearly differentiate personal space and the workspace. You want to make sure that your family and customers know where certain spaces start and end.

Additionally, you must prepare the space you will use for the restaurant well, so it can fully perform its purpose. And speaking of preparing a room in your house (which is most likely the living room or parlor) to convert into a restaurant, here are six tips that will certainly help:

1. Before planning anything, clear out the room.

Do not just declutter the room, empty it out completely. This will provide with a better idea of what you will be working with such as the amount of space you actually have and the layout that will best fit it.

Also, doing this will help you determine which items you have taken out are functional to the room and should make their way back, and those you really need to find a new place for or throw out already.

2. Think about the general theme of your restaurant.

Do you want the design to still “be one” with the rest of the house? Or, do you want it to have its own personality to appeal better to your target market? Knowing what theme you want for your place of business will greatly aid in conceptualizing the right design to reflect it.

3. Establish your budget.

Do you want your restaurant to look elegant, sophisticated, and exclusive despite its considerably smaller space? Depending on the ambiance you desire to create, prepare to spend a significant amount of money for the renovation and installation of new fixtures to make the space look undeniably restaurant-like.

When you have a clear budget for the room transformation, you will have a better idea of what to go big on and where you can save a bit to make the budget do so much more for your business.

4. Decide if you need to expand or implement an innovative design.

Sometimes, the room size can present a lot of issues concerning function. You may have to expand or pull in the expertise of F&B consultants and interior fit-out professionals.

The expansion will ensure you achieve the amount of space required by your operations. Meanwhile, an innovative design with interior fit-outs will make whatever size of space you have work to serve the purpose you have in mind. Interior fit-out experts can provide you with a variety of space solutions to make sure your home-based restaurant meets all of your aesthetic and functional requirements.

5. Think carefully about the number of people who will be using the room.

Always match people with the space. Comfort and convenience are absolute musts for restaurants, no matter the size.

For a home-based restaurant, veterans in the business provide this rule of thumb: “As much as possible, the number of employees and customers should be less or the same as the number of family members you originally have at home.”

6. Do not forget storage.

This will become an issue as the business becomes successful with operations. You will accumulate more items such as plates, utensils, cookware, and decor. Have more shelves and containers built for storage. Consider turning to a local storage facility as well if you want to make the restaurant as spacious and stylish as you can. You also can store seasonal items at this separate location.

Transforming a room or section in your house into a restaurant is a practical and smart route to take. However, be thoughtful about this endeavor to prevent the venture from compromising home dynamics, while ensuring that it will be an effective launching mechanism for your restaurant business.


Shane Curran
CEO at Interact Group LLC

Interact Group is a design-led interior fit-out company that aims to set new standards in the UAE interiors market. Driven by their dedication to total customer experience, the company’s mission is to bring truly specialized teams to complex design and fit out challenges, utilizing their unmatched ability to deliver spaces efficiently and above expectation.