There are so many reasons why a large group of people may dine together. For this reason, group-friendly restaurants are some of the most popular businesses in modern society. Within the restaurant industry, there are many types of food service establishments. However, not all of them are able to accommodate large groups and unique occasions.
Plus, allowing consumers to reserve space for large parties is a sure way to raise the restaurant profit margin. Group dining secures a minimum number of sales ahead of time, making it cost-effective to offer. Throughout this blog, we’ll discuss what it means to offer catering and food service in group-friendly restaurants, and why they’re so important.
Then, we’ll explain how you can streamline restaurant operations by automating processes in group-friendly restaurants. So, let’s begin!
Group-Friendly Restaurants: Definition
Group-friendly restaurants refer to eateries that can accommodate large groups of people. Restaurants for large groups have bigger areas in the back, or completely private rooms. It’s also standard for group-friendly restaurants to have enough seating arrangements for everyone to dine comfortably. Whether it's a school function or private family dinner, the best restaurants for large groups can do it all.
Perks of Group-Friendly Restaurants In Modern Society
There are many reasons why consumers choose to dine in group-friendly restaurants. Maybe someone has a major life event that they want to celebrate over dinner with friends and family. Or, perhaps a local school is hosting a field trip, and a few classes need to stop for lunch while they're out. No matter the occasion, the following features are some of the best reasons why group dining restaurants are so successful.
See below for the details:
Private Dining Rooms
Group-friendly restaurants almost always have private dining rooms. On average, such spaces can seat up to twenty people. As the best options for formal and intimate dining options, there are many ways to customize the area.
For instance, if a guest of honor hosts a private dinner for a celebration, they can decorate the room accordingly. This scenario would most likely happen for events like engagement and graduation parties. Then, the staff won't have to change up the restaurant's decor.
Or, perhaps not all private dining reservations pertain to a specific celebration. In some cases, family reunions or school field trips might be taking place. When these bookings land in your schedule, it's just like operating during any other busy shift. The only difference is the restaurant seating arrangements.
Restaurants for big groups must be able to accommodate a high number of people at once. The easiest way to do so is by offering family style dining options. Self-serve stations and platters are just a couple of examples that fall into the family-style dining bucket.
The primary goal of family-style dining is to serve large parties enough food, without the hassle of making complex dishes. Think of it as the midway point between a fast food eatery and an upscale restaurant.
Whether you realize it or not, most casual dining eateries exist within the family-style dining category. With this in mind, most group dinner restaurants can convert into group-friendly restaurants. With the right space and menu types, the business owner can easily make it happen.
Specialty and Custom Menus
It'd be nearly impossible for group-friendly restaurants to exist without specialty and custom menus. If guests are choosing to host a private dining experience, there's a high chance that they want to serve a specific menu. Or, they might want to limit the menu options to keep costs within their budget.
Let's say a guest of honor is hosting a private, special event. The menu will include a few items from the appetizer list, one to three types of entree food, and one or two choices from the dessert menu. If they would like, there can also be a limit to drink options.
It's also advantageous for the restaurant to offer specialty and custom menus. If there is a private dining event happening, the wait staff is guaranteed to serve numerous people at once. By keeping the menu to a minimum, it simplifies their job. More importantly, the sous chef will experience much less stress, as they won't have to prepare over a dozen unique dishes.
When planning group reservations, the restaurant manager can also take the time to order enough inventory. If there's only a select number of menu items for the event, this will contribute to the list of ingredients to stock up on. In turn, limiting the menu and accepting restaurant reservations ahead of time will boost cost savings and efficiency.
Restaurant Group Friendly Seating
Sure, any restaurant can accommodate large groups if they can serve enough food. However, group-friendly restaurants must abide by many other concepts. One of the most important being proper seating arrangements.
Before offering group dining, ensure that the seating capacity is large enough to cater private, in-house events. Then, offer party planners a variety of seating options. Communal seating can look a number of different ways. Hopefully, your POS system will be able to mix and match tables to get a clear idea of how you can seat guests.
Automate Group-Friendly Restaurants
When running a group friendly restaurant, you want to make sure that operations are as seamless as possible. What this means is that using all-inclusive restaurant tech solutions will be your best bet. From integrated POS software, to a user-friendly reservation system, technology will be your friend.
For example, let's say a guest of honor books a group reservation online. If you're using the right POS Solutions, their information will land within your system instantly. Then, the restaurant staff will be able to plan accordingly. Even solutions like the kitchen display system can connect to the restaurant POS platform and reservation booking system.
Frequently Asked Questions About Group-Friendly Restaurants
Restaurants good for groups consist of many features and unique amenities. From shorter menus to spacious rooms, not all restaurants can offer group dining. However, the ones that can are able to accommodate private outings and special events. Need more information about group-friendly restaurants? Read on.
What Are Some Features of Group-Friendly Restaurants?
Some of the most popular features of group-friendly restaurants include:
- A large area in the back of the restaurant, or private dining rooms
- Large tables, adequate seating, and different seating options
- Flexible and custom menus for each course
- A staff who can handle large parties
- Ample parking spaces outside
How Far In Advance Should Customers Book Reservations at Group-Friendly Restaurants?
If guests have a date and time picked out, they need to book group dining reservations as early as possible. Space for large parties is scarce, so it's vital that you notify the restaurant at least three to six months ahead of time.
How Can Group-Friendly Restaurants Ensure Smooth Operations?
Group-friendly restaurants can streamline operations in a number of ways, which include the following tips:
- Properly train the staff to handle large parties
- Require that guests make reservations far in advance
- Limit the number of menu items for larger parties
- Sync all data to an all-inclusive POS platform
What Qualities Should Group-Friendly Restaurants Acquire?
Group-friendly restaurants should display the following traits and qualities:
- Discounts for larger parties and events
- Large spaces to accommodate bigger groups and private events
- Flexible menu options depending on the occasion
- The ability for customers to book online reservations
- Stellar customer service, from booking the event to hosting it
What Are Some Popular Cuisines for Group-Friendly Restaurants?
Group-friendly restaurants should offer a wide variety of food favorites. This way, everyone will be happy with their meal--even if there's a restrictive menu. Some of the most popular cuisines include:
Group-friendly restaurants are some of the most important business models in today’s society. For one, they allow close-knit groups of people to spend quality time together. No matter what the occasion is, the option for larger group dining is a convenient way to dine with an extensive number of people.
On the other hand, group-friendly restaurants are profitable ventures for the owner. Group reservations ensure that a specific amount of orders will be sold for a particular date. Plus, it exposes the restaurant to people who may be visiting it for the first time. So, if this isn’t something you offer at the moment, we encourage you to create the space to do so!