Outdoor Restaurant Seating for Social Distancing and Reopening After COVID-19

As parts of the country cautiously reopen after widespread closures due to the coronavirus pandemic, some restaurants are being allowed to resume business with limited outdoor seating under specific state ordinances. This means that restaurants without previous outdoor seating areas are now scrambling to set up new high-quality, attractive, and durable structures for outdoor restaurant seating to keep people at a safe social distance while enjoying dining out once more. Businesses are transforming parking lots, sidewalks, small side streets, and patios into social distancing safe havens.

If your state is beginning to allow for the reopening of restaurants and you want to add an outdoor seating area to your restaurant, cafe, bar, or tavern, here’s what to look for. 

Covered Outdoor Seating Designed for Durability

Because of its location, outdoor restaurant or cafe seating needs to be durable and weather-resistant. Consider the climate in your area and plan appropriately. You’ll need to make sure covered structures are secured to the ground and won’t fly away with a strong wind, or come tumbling down after a rough bout of rain. 

Fabric buildings from WeatherPort Shelter Systems™ are outfitted with flame-resistant tensioned membranes and are designed to meet local building codes for wind and snow, protecting guests and keeping them safe.

Creating Comfortable Outdoor Dining Areas During COVID-19

Whether the temperatures are still catching up with the season where your restaurant is located or the sun is already shining too strongly, keeping your guests comfortable while sitting outdoors is paramount. 

WeatherPort’s covered seating structures can be heated or cooled with HVAC systems as well as insulated, maintaining a constant interior temperature and keeping guests comfortable no matter the temperature outside. You can also choose to equip your structure with a large ceiling fan, misting systems, or side curtains that open so that guests can enjoy the fresh air, views, and outdoor atmosphere during the summer.

Quickly Reopen Your Restaurant With Easy to Set Up Fabric Structures

Every day your restaurant remains closed is a loss of revenue. Rather than spend weeks constructing an elaborate outdoor covered seating area and miss capitalizing on the potential business opportunity, invest in a fabric structure that can be set up quickly to get your restaurant back on the map as soon as possible. In addition to its efficient setup, covered outdoor seating from WeatherPort is both easy to disassemble and store for when you no longer require additional outdoor seating or leave up year-round for continued and long-term use (additional outdoor seating after the coronavirus crisis).

[Related: Increase Dining Appeal and Capacity with an Outdoor Restaurant Canopy]

Covered Outdoor Seating Areas Designed to Meet Your Restaurant Needs

Your restaurant’s visual appeal is important to your brand and marketing. Setting up an old, drab-looking tent in the front of your shop won’t look very welcoming to customers, and will do a poor job at representing your company. WeatherPort’s tensioned fabric structures meet the needs of all kinds of restaurants, bars, and cafes because of their many customizable elements. 

Design an outdoor structure that fits with the style and theme of your restaurant or main dining area. Personalize the size, color, and design, and choose what window or curtain elements you’ll need. Add stylish outdoor furniture and accessories such as heat lamps, potted plants, or string lights and make this outdoor seating structure your own and a cozy, unique dining experience for your customers to safely return to.

Let customers know and quickly identify their favorite eatery and help promote your restaurant by adding logos to your covered outdoor seating area! All WeatherPort fabric structures can be custom-designed to include near-magazine quality printed logos and graphics.

Meets Requirements

Above all, you need to ensure that your outdoor fabric structure meets the requirements for socially distanced restaurant seating. We recommend researching your state, city, or county’s specific guidelines for restaurants reopening after COVID-19 and the rules for outdoor restaurant seating to avoid delays, fines, or potential shutdowns. Certain areas require their seating to be at half capacity, with tables seating guests at a minimum of six feet away from each other. Whatever the requirements, your adherence to them directly affects your success at getting through the reopening stages of the coronavirus pandemic, getting back to feeding your community, gainfully employing restaurant staff, and making a profit.

Interested in finding out more about WeatherPort’s outdoor restaurant shelters? Our durable, fully customizable tensioned fabric structures have helped restaurant owners enhance their businesses for the past 50 years. Contact us today to find out how a WeatherPort fabric structure can help your business through this pandemic and beyond.

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