Designing a bar ‘Part 2’: The budget
The great thing about the ‘B@1’ theme of ‘friendliness’ is that one does not require a huge, dazzling chandelier to complete the effect. Having said that, your customers are not going to pay to drink in a dingy little hole in the wall even if you have playboy bunnies serving the drinks (alright, maybe they would…) so it is vital to ensure that, if your theme is friendly service, the Design of the bar compliments this theme.
The success of ‘B@1’ lies with its service so any Design needs to facilitate good service. Therefore it is important that the ‘B@1’ Bar Staff are catered for when considering the Design: as a result, the bar area must be very user friendly so that drinks can be quickly concocted. This may require a bespoke bar which makes maximum use of the available space – yes, bespoke furniture is expensive but it will serve a very specific purpose, the purpose being in this case that the mint for a Mojito (for example) is easily reachable from all service ports which will keep the drinks arriving quickly and the Bar Staff happy.
As with Interior Design, if one is going to invest in bespoke items it may be necessary to cut back in other areas and, therefore, as a Designer I always need to know what the budget is. With regard to a bar/pub, the more money you invest the more likely it is that people will pay to drink there. Having said this, one must have a strong grasp upon projected profits as to spend a disproportionate amount on refurbishment may result in your running a bar that is full every night but that is actually losing money overall.
Someone said, or should have said, that ‘budget is the killer of dreams’. I would always consider a theme before considering the budget but one must always be ready to accept that one may have to adjust the theme if the budget has no chance of adequately covering it.