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In a city as big as Toronto, finding premium restaurant space can be hard to come by. As a result of this limited Real Estate, there have been a large increase in restaurants opening their businesses out of smaller-scale commercial spaces. Consequently, many are showing an interest in building small restaurants.

Although smaller restaurants may seem a bit stressful to organize at first, this is easy to mitigate. With a little planning and creativity, you can make a huge impact on inspiring patrons to enjoy your intimate space.

With the art of efficiency and design, the following floor plan tips will work wonders in creating a small restaurant. Additionally, one with a BIG personality.


Generally speaking, the front entrance of a restaurant should be the last area of your design planning. When building small restaurants, there are other sections that need more attention than this one. As many restaurateurs make the mistake of running out of kitchen space in the design process, leaving this area for last will ensure that your priorities are covered first.

However, this does not mean that your entrance area is the least important! In fact, this is the first point of contact you will have to impress your guests. This area should clearly represent your restaurant’s concept and brand. So, your front entrance and waiting area should also be able to entice visitors with a memorable welcoming.


By rule of thumb, your dining area should take up approximately 60% of your floor plan.

This area of your restaurant should really focus on providing comfortable, inviting seating options. Moreover, it should not obstruct the flow of traffic for your staff and guests.

As mixed seating options can help make the most of your given space, adding a variety of trendy counter-top tables around the perimeter will provide plenty of seating accommodation. This will also free up a lot of center space for additional tables and/or booth options.


Developing the dining area is a crucial part of building small restaurants. However, while it is required to take up a good 60% of your floor plan, the remaining 30-40% should concentrate on the powerhouse of your business: your kitchen.

One great example of a kitchen floor plan design is called the Assembly Line Kitchen. As this layout enables raw food ingredients to run through a linear order of operations, smaller restaurant kitchens may find this design incredibly efficient for taking their menu items through an organized process of food preparation, cooking, plating, and finally – distribution to your hungry patrons.

A second kitchen design that works great for small restaurants is the Island Kitchen Design. By having your cooking equipment placed strategically in the center of your space, restaurants with fewer kitchen staff will have an easier time navigating between multiple responsibilities.

For additional tips on organizing a commercial kitchen, click here.


Two helpful things to consider when planning your restaurant’s restroom areas are a) the location of any existing plumbing, and b) the comfort levels of your guests.

Firstly, placing your restrooms near your kitchen area will save you a great deal of hassle and cost when it comes to setting up your plumbing and waterlines. Secondly, having a restroom that opens directly into your dining hall may make your visitors feel a bit uncomfortable. By giving your restrooms a spacious, separate and accessible entrance on your floor plan, you can ensure that your customers have a pleasant experience.

If you are looking for a construction companies in Calgary that can assist in bringing your dream to reality! Give us a call today. Moreover, if you want to take the next step in learning the costs of restaurant design, check out our other article Restaurant Interior Design Costs.