Designing An Al Fresco Dining Area In A Restaurant

October 23rd, 2017 | by Norbert C
Designing An Al Fresco Dining Area In A Restaurant

When designing a new restaurant, most of the focus and attention is usually dedicated to the kitchen, dining room and bar, but we shouldn’t forget the outdoors as well. That’s what the customers see first and first impressions are usually the most important ones. It’s a challenge to create space that is unique and alluring, but at the same time, functional and practical. The outdoor area is the extension of the indoors and it needs to be equally beautiful and charming and reflect the owner’s personal style and taste.

Here are several designing tips on how to achieve this goal successfully.

Restaurant signage

Your restaurant’s designed sign and logo are some of the first things that will set you apart from your competition so make sure it’s done well. Clearly, a DIY project, such as a spray-painted name on a piece of plywood won’t work here as it won’t show that you are a serious and professional business. It’s probably best to invest more in getting a respectable sign, so hiring a professional is the best way to go.

The same goes for all the other signs outside your restaurant, such as the open/close sign, no smoking, parking and others. Outdoor menu boards or glass encased menus at the entrance are an excellent way to attract more guests but they also need to be smartly designed and well-lit. An additional sandwich board on the sidewalk with artsy chalk handwriting is a great way to get round-the-clock advertising for your menu specials and offers of the day, and it costs next to nothing.

Designing An Al Fresco Dining Area In A Restaurant


This is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to add charm and magic-like feel to any outdoor space. The way you illuminate your space can create a specific mood and contribute to the guests’ overall experience. If well positioned, it can enhance certain features of the restaurant by drawing attention to them, as well as create a wow factor as soon as diners enter the door.

String lights and lanterns on trellises and pergolas will create just enough light that will blend into the background and cast a pleasant glow on the tables, whereas a variety of table candles will shimmer and make meals more romantic. If your restaurant has a more extensive backyard space, Tiki torch anchors can easily and discretely outline the sideways and paths leading to all sections.

Colour and design

The first thing that makes an impact in outdoor areas, especially under daylight, is the choice of colour and design. There’s a wide range of colours to choose from that can help you incorporate them into any design you have in mind and achieve the visual effect you desire. Go for freshness and vibrancy and start with two main colours by including them into the existing scheme. For example, nude colours go well with pale pinks and bright greens and yellows in a shabby chic design. This is the part where you can release your creative spirit and be bold with your choices.

Designing An Al Fresco Dining Area In A Restaurant

Extra features

There are many ways to beautify your outdoor space and one of the most effective ones is music. Built-in speakers are a perfect backdrop for romantic dinners, water features add the calming effect and fire pits an element of warmth and cosiness.

In hot climates, having misters and proper shading is more than welcome. In order to maximise the comfort of your guests, you should look into what this Sydney-based supplier of cantilever umbrellas has to offer, and you will find the shade solutions that are durable, stylish and offer optimal protection.

When all these elements are combined with comfortable and attractive outdoor furniture, you’ll be able to create an ambiance you desire in your restaurant, and your guests won’t be able to resist its appeal.