If you're in the process of opening a restaurant and you like the idea of offering seating on a patio, overhead awnings are a must. Awnings are valuable because they allow you to essentially expand the size of your restaurant, which can allow more people to visit you each day and improve your profitability. A local awning retailer can present you with a number of options to ensure that the awnings you choose suit the look of the building, tie in with your brand's color scheme, and even feature your restaurant's name. Here are some considerations to keep in mind when you're choosing awnings.
Consider Fixed Vs. Retractable
When you shop for commercial awnings, you'll often have the choice of those that are permanently fixed to your building and those that retract. Although fixed awnings can have some advantages, you likely want to focus on retractable awnings for your restaurant. Retractable awnings will make your outdoor seating better by providing shelter during inclement weather or even intense heat from the sun. However, on days that are more moderate, you can easily retract the awnings to allow your patrons to enjoy the sunlight as they eat.
Consider The Height
When you're thinking about the height at which to install your awnings, it's beneficial to get some insight from a sales professional at the awning retailer. You don't want the awnings installed so low that people dining outside on your patio feel a little claustrophobic. Additionally, you'll want to think about what tall fixtures you might use outside. For example, if you want to keep your patio open as long as possible, even when the weather gets cooler, you may have a series of infrared heaters placed around the patio. These tall objects need enough clearance so that their heat isn't too close to the awning fabric.
Consider Your Lighting
Your awnings can also help to augment the ambiance out on your restaurant's patio. One visually appealing feature to consider is the lighting you wish to use. One approach is to run strings of lights beneath the underside of the awnings. If you choose to do so, you'll need to buy awnings that are conducive to this feature. For example, if you want retractable awnings, you may wish those that fold up instead of roll up. In the folding variety, the lights may be able to be kept in place, whereas this might not be possible in the roll-up type.
Companies like Lehman Awning Company can help you find the right awnings for your needs.