How to open your lounge bar

* The calculations use the average data for the World

Residents of large cities are offered a huge variety of entertainment. A modern person can almost easily find a type of relaxation to his liking, most importantly, have the means to pay for his pastime. Restaurants, cafes and bars no longer surprise anyone today, a huge number of such institutions are in any city, they are made in various subjects and offer their customers a variety of services. There is an institution for every taste and any requirements, but some formats are just beginning to be popular among the population, and the niche remains free. This includes the so-called lounge bars, which differ from ordinary bars in that they have a calm and peaceful atmosphere, quiet music plays and dimmed lighting is set up.

In fact, the definition of a lounge-bar does not have any other characteristics that can be used to determine exactly which establishment belongs to lounge and which does not. There are only some trends and already established requirements of visitors, according to which you can determine which contingent will go to such a bar and who will be interested in it at all. In this regard, a novice entrepreneur has many opportunities to show his creative potential, to realize his ideas and ideas, creating a bar that he likes.

The Lounge is opposed to bars, cafes, restaurants and especially clubs, because it offers visitors relaxation and tranquility, to some extent even detachment from other visitors and from the world in general. People in big cities are gradually starting to get tired of noisy parties, looking for a place where you can relax from the rest (no matter how paradoxical this may sound). In this regard, the lounge-bar may not be a separate unit, but part of a restaurant or cafe, it is better even a club where you can enjoy silence.

But formally, a lounge-bar is a public institution, often a public catering, with the same list of services that can be found in any other restaurant or cafe. Lounge is a format, style, its own atmosphere, something new, but from a legal point of view and from the point of view of organizing a business, this is actually the same bar. The difference in the work of marketers and designers. This is an opportunity to sell people the long-known old service in a new package, and lounge is valued precisely for this package.

The word lounge can generally be attributed to anything from a bar to a billiard room. Now it’s a fashion, in a modern language, a new trend, lounge bars are usually designed for wealthy customers, and do not offer exquisite drinks and expensive dishes, they often organize VIP rooms, play live music, and many generally work in closed format the club.

An important point is the registration of a business entity. The most preferred form is a limited liability company, which is a legal entity. This is due to several factors, because of which, in fact, only LLC is suitable for organizing a bar by a novice entrepreneur. The first reason is related to the ability to use a simplified taxation system, transferring 6% (of income) or 15% (of operating profit) to the state. This form of deductions can be used by an individual who has been registered as an individual entrepreneur, but entrepreneurs do not have the right to engage in retail sale of alcoholic beverages; they simply won’t be given the appropriate license. In order to open your bar, it is likely that you need to specify several OKVED codes. The activities of a public catering establishment may fall under several definitions: (OKPD 2) 08/18/2019 Food services with full restaurant service, (OKPD 2) 08/18/2019 Other food services, (OKPD 2) 08/18/2019 Food services in self-service establishments, (OKPD 2) 56.30 Beverage service. It seems that the wording of each definition exhaustively shows the difference between them.

The resolved registration issue is only the beginning of bureaucratic red tape. The next stop will be the executive body of the constituent entities of the Russian Federation, in which work will be conducted. The authority to license retail sales of alcoholic beverages is often delegated to local governments. There are several types of licenses, and a license for retail sale of alcohol for consumption of products at the place of purchase is suitable for bars. It should be noted that a license can only be issued for products with an ethyl alcohol content of not more than 15%, which may not be suitable for the format of the establishment. In this regard, it is recommended to obtain a license to trade in any alcohol without restrictions on the content of ethyl alcohol in it. The following documents are submitted to the executive authority:

  1. Charter of the enterprise.

  2. Memorandum of association.

  3. The protocol or decision of the founders, the order on the appointment of the director, the order on the assumption of the post of director.

  4. Certificate of registration with the tax authority.

  5. Certificate of state registration of the enterprise.

  6. Certificate of entry in the Unified State Register of Legal Entities, extract from the register.

  7. Bank details.

  8. The lease agreement for the premises with the act of the transfer of property or a certificate of ownership from the owner of the premises.

  9. Copy of document on payment of license fee, receipt of state duty payment.

  10. Registration card for cash register equipment, passport version

  11. Certificate from the tax authority about the applicant’s lack of taxes and fees

  12. A document confirming the conformity of the object of trade with the declared type of activity, documents of specially authorized state bodies on the compliance of the premises (trade, storage, utility) with sanitary and epidemiological standards and requirements and standards of fire safety.

  13. Application for a license.

  14. Copies of certificates of conformity and (or) declarations of conformity of the main technological equipment.

But that is not all. Firstly, the institution in which the circulation of alcohol will take place should not be located on the territory of educational, medical, sports and similar institutions and not closer than 100 meters from them. Secondly, the area of ​​your institution should be at least 50 m2. In addition, a burglar alarm should be installed at the place, there should be a safe for storing money and documents, a sales outlet should be equipped with cash registers. Thirdly, the size of the authorized capital should not be less than three hundred thousand rubles. Fourth, the cost of the state fee for issuing a license is 40 thousand rubles for each year of use, and given that it is issued for a period of up to five years, the amount of the fee may increase to 200 thousand.

But catering establishments can engage in retail sale of alcohol at any time, unlike grocery stores, where after 23 hours it can’t be sold. It should also be borne in mind that each region may have its own local laws that, to one degree or another, modify the provisions of federal law. Moreover, Federal Law No. 171-FZ “On State Regulation of the Production and Turnover of Ethyl Alcohol, Alcohol and Alcohol-Containing Products” does not prohibit local governments from completely banning the sale of alcohol at retail. Therefore, the risk of adopting Prohibition remains. To simplify your task, you can contact specialized firms involved in obtaining licenses. This will result in additional costs, but can greatly reduce the time for issuing a license and eliminate errors and repeated calls to the licensing authority.

The choice of the location of your bar can significantly affect its further profit and the work of the institution. It is best located in the central areas of the city, in the traditional holiday districts of the majority of the population. It is necessary to accurately determine the target group, and since lounge bars are primarily interesting for people with serious incomes, it is best to find places near elite establishments or just in elite neighborhoods.

However, an entrepreneur can vary for other categories of consumers, and no one forbids organizing a lounge bar for people with limited financial capabilities. Moreover, no one excludes the fact that such an institution will bring more profit than oriented to a rich public.

In general, it is usually better to find a place for a lounge-bar close to noisy establishments, thus playing in contrast and offering consumers an alternative. In this case, most likely, you will not have to compete with other similar institutions, because in the lounge bar people will only relax before or after visiting more noisy places. Of course, a certain percentage of potential customers will constantly choose between a lounge bar and a club, for example, but for the most part people will perceive this as two different types of leisure activities. In some cases, it is advisable in general to become a continuation of an already working institution, opening your own quiet room where you can take a break from loud music and noisy pastime.

Thus, it turns out that the lounge bar can work in a completely different format, and an entrepreneur with limited finances can afford fruitful cooperation with an already working cafe or bar, opening a separate lounge with a soft atmosphere on their basis. Needless to say, such a way of organizing would be significantly cheaper than organizing a stand-alone bar.

Any choice should be something remarkable for the client, memorable and have some kind of atmosphere. In this regard, lounge bars are often decorated in any theme, but since these are usually quite large establishments, the territory of the bar can be divided into several zones that have a different interior. The general requirements for the lounge-bar can be called quiet soft music, dim light (but rarely twilight), as well as low and soft furniture: sofas and armchairs with coffee tables.

The lounge bar is divided into a common area, which can accommodate a large number of people and usually invited artists: musicians and dancers; And the private zone stands out, which is divided into separate rooms, not necessarily completely isolated from each other, but still fenced. In lounge bars, it is almost mandatory to provide a hookah room to your customers, or hookahs can be served in closed private rooms. The organization of the hookah smoking room is quite complicated, involves the installation of a ventilation and smoke exhaust system, the rooms in which you can smoke a hookah, in this case, really should be isolated from the rest of the room. Thus, in the common room, smoking hookah on tobacco is allowed, but there are hookahs prepared on mixtures that do not contain tobacco products.

Lounge bar to create a quiet and peaceful atmosphere should have the appropriate interior and certain surroundings. In this case, it is almost always advisable to turn to professional designers who can create a room project taking into account the convenience of location, the right combination of colors, shades, styles and all interior elements will not give the institution individuality, aesthetic appeal and comfort. For a lounge bar, this is especially important, because visitors to it do not least enjoy the aesthetic beauty of the interior. The cost of a design project depends on the size of the room, the larger it is, the less is 1 square meter in total. On average, a room of 100 square meters will require approximately 90 thousand rubles for the design. Of course, no one forces you to spend this money if the entrepreneur or his assistants have the opportunity to independently develop the design of the premises and successfully implement this project.

In addition to the interior, it is important to pay a lot of attention to the exterior, but the sign of the establishment is especially important here. It should be visible from the street, from the roadway, to attract the client and like him. You need to seriously take care of the parking zone, because in large cities the lack of parking can be a serious problem for a person who decides to visit the institution.

The following is the purchase of equipment and furniture. According to the license for the sale of alcohol, the establishment must have a cash register, and the bar requires a computer and peripheral equipment, work tools, kitchen equipment, equipped technical zones and bathrooms. Furniture for halls can be bought at a reasonable price, having spent both 50 thousand rubles and several million, that is, the range of prices here is too large to give any average figures. But usually the lounge-bar is a place with really expensive furniture that will appeal to people with great incomes. However, the main thing is to sit comfortably and comfortably, sometimes, especially in private rooms, very upholstered furniture is bought in which you can fall apart. The lounge bar, especially the one in which the hookah room works, is usually made in the style of the Arab countries or India, so visitors can even sit on the floor covered with soft pillows, carpets and blankets.

Visitors make many demands on the cuisine of the institution. The bar in the usual sense of the word is not required to offer customers a full menu, it should have a lot of different drinks, but only light snacks from food. However, in the case of a lounge bar, it is better to offer a menu, even if it suits more the definition of a cafe or restaurant. When choosing a kitchen, you probably need to conduct your marketing research to examine consumer preferences, fashion, competitors' offers and the predicted demand for a particular cuisine. However, in some cases, organizing your own cooking can only become unnecessary complexity when opening a bar, because it may not be popular among customers, because the provision of restaurant catering services requires coordination with many authorities and involves constant checks.

A small number of people will serve the bar, these are waiters, administrators, people responsible for the background music and picking it up, security guards, if necessary, cooks and their assistants, bartenders. In addition to this, you need to either hire or contract with artists who will perform on stage. Live jazz performances showed themselves well in lounge bars, because it is quiet and pleasant music for most people. Sometimes you can find other directions, up to ambient and even sounds of nature. But in any case, any lounge-bar should have its own peculiarity, something unique and distinguishing it from other institutions.

Opening your own bar today is a very difficult undertaking, because the competition in this area is great, there are too many difficulties, it is sometimes very difficult to attract a visitor because of his high requirements, and constant checks only exacerbate the matter. In the case of a lounge bar, the problem of competition is solved, there is an interesting feature of its own, and it is distinguished from the rest of the bars. For people who have long dreamed of opening their own bar, the lounge area is definitely worth considering.

Matthias Laudanum (c) - A portal to small business business plans and guides

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