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Keys to a Successful Restaurant Fit Out | Unita Blog

A selection of Mexican food including tacos, corn chips, black bun burger and sweet potato fries at a restaurant table


For every 26 restaurants that open across Australia every year, 20 will close within their first few months of trading. That’s after the owners have already invested $100-500K on average on the venue’s design and interior fitout. Worse still, the average profit margin generated will only have been one per cent or less before they shut their doors for good.

So how do you avoid becoming one of these unhappy statistics and build a successful long-term venue? We breakdown our thoughts on what you need to know before investing in an expensive design and shop fitout.



Our number one rule? Don’t invest all your life savings on the construction, equipment or fitout of your new venue! Without question, a great design and fitout will contribute to the success and longevity of your restaurant. But if you don’t have money to burn then setting yourself a realistic budget – and sticking to it – is crucial. One of the best ways to help minimise your expenses is to engage a design and fitout team early in the planning stages. Your design and shopfitting team can help you determine if the site you’ve chosen is right for your concept, ensure the layout of your service and production area is efficient so you can produce great food and help you value engineer your project to deliver a quality build while staying within your budget.


Suki, Gasworks (Built by Unita)



By the time your shopfitting team handover the keys to your new restaurant, café or bar you’ve already invested months, if not years, of hard work and planning into creating your dream venue. Your new venture could be the result of a life-long passion for American Diners or a desire to re-create the taste of a summer holiday spent in Greece. Nevertheless, the success of any business comes down to ensuring you’re serving the needs of your customers first and foremost. Do your market research and make sure you understand how other local businesses operate so you get a clear picture of what works and what doesn’t. Make an effort to understand your customer’s demographics, habits and income as this will help you decide if your concept is viable. Look at what others in the area are doing and make sure your venue is unique and fills a gap in the market. Your chosen concept will determine not only what’s on your menu, but also your design and fitout, what sort of expenses you’ll incur and even your marketing strategy. In short – choose your concept wisely!


Betty’s Burgers, Melbourne CBD (Built by Unita)



It’s tempting to think you will be able to do a lot of the work setting-up your venue by yourself. However, unless you have a lot of previous DIY experience it’s important to know that rather than increasing your expenses professional service providers can actually help you save money and build a successful long-lasting brand. For example, experts in hospitality fitouts have years of experience delivering venues and know where you can save dollars without compromising on style or function. Their extensive knowledge of what’s required means they know what will work and what won’t, what’s practical and efficient and what costs you’ll need to factor in for materials, demolition, furniture, equipment, building contingencies and more. They’ll help you avoid making costly mistakes that could impact the long-term success of your business and ensure your fitout is welcoming and inviting without compromising on efficiency or service.


Criniti’s, Wollongong (Built by Unita)


Need help bringing your vision to life? Contact Unita today to get a free quote!

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