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As the hospitality industry prepares to reopen in the coming months, many restaurateurs are taking time to consider how they can make the most of their available space whilst providing a safe, socially distanced environment for patrons. We’ve put together this guide to the furniture types and layouts that can help you create a restaurant space that is not only safe but inviting.

Please note that whilst we are experts in all things furniture, you should always follow the latest government guidelines around providing a COVID-19 safe venue.

Create clear paths throughout the space

One of the key things to consider when it comes to layout and furniture is that you will need to provide adequate walkways throughout your restaurant. This needs to include routes for customers reaching their table and making trips to the bathroom, bar and outdoor areas.

You will also want to ensure employees can safely make their way around the restaurant to carry out their duties.

Take the dining experience outside

If you have outdoor space available on your premises, now is the time to make the most of it! Previous lockdowns, the rise of European style al fresco dining, and customers’ concerns over enclosed spaces have all contributed to a boom in outdoor dining and drinking.

Whether you’re lucky enough to have a garden-style outdoor area, or even a space in front of your restaurant, adding weatherproof outdoor seating options will increase your capacity and draw in customers during the warmer months.

Our article on street café furnishing grants can tell you more about pavement licences and any government support that may be available to businesses.

Choose skinnier furniture pieces

With the need to ensure all tables are well spaced it’s only natural that capacity will have to be reduced. You can however mitigate this by choosing ‘skinnier’ furniture options which allow you to fit more smaller dining spots throughout your restaurant.

Smaller square tables designed for 2-4 diners are ideal as they can be kept as they are for smaller parties or pushed together for larger household groups. You may also want to consider using vertical space by adding poseur tables and stools. These can also create the perfect front of house waiting area for patrons to enjoy a drink whilst their table is prepared. 

If you want to create a more traditional look, farmhouse chairs are a timeless option that slot neatly under dining tables and wear well over time, whilst still taking up minimal space.

Add private booths

Dining booths create private areas which are ideal for housing slightly larger households. When placed along walls or corners they make good use of space and are naturally suited to creating a separate, closed-off area.

American Diner Bench

Our American Diner Bench (above) adds a fun retro feel but is also easy to disinfect between groups thanks to its durable faux leather finish.

Social distancing furniture for your restaurant

Trent Furniture offers a wide range of tables and chairs for fast delivery, perfect for refurbishing or updating your restaurant ready to reopen. View our social distancing furniture here or call us on 0116 2989 920 today to talk to our furniture experts about placing an order.

It is well known that things such as food and entertainment at a banquet can make or break the evening, but so can the furniture. A table that’s too crowded or an uncomfortable chair could be remembered more than the delicious three-course meal or brilliant DJ. Therefore,  choosing the right furniture for your venue and number of guests is crucial.

With more than 60 years of experience, we know a thing or two about banquet furniture, from stacking chairs to folding tables. Whether it’s a wedding, conference or party, this beginner’s guide will help you find the perfect furniture for the perfect banquet.



Banquet tables might not look like much by themselves, but when dressed up with table cloths, flowers and decorations, they can be one of the focal points of a venue. Made from either plastic or plywood, we offer folding and stacking banquet tables in a range of sizes to suit almost any event.

Round banquet tables

Round tables are a highly popular choice for weddings and conferences. They are not only sturdy but also look great in both large and small venues, providing a sociable atmosphere to help conversation among guests flow easily. We supply round banqueting tables suitable for between three and twelve people, with foldable wishbone legs that simplify storage and movement.

Rectangular banquet tables

For more intimate events at smaller venues, rectangular tables are ideal for creating long banqueting tables with guests sat on either side. Our rectangular tables are available in light oak, dark oak or antique white, making them great for use both with and without table cloths for a more rustic style. These tables are also perfect for top tables at weddings, or buffet tables that can be cleared away during the event thanks to our foldable and stackable product selection.

Semi-circular banquet tables

Half-moon or semi-circle tables offer more versatility for your event as they can be used by themselves as presentation tables at awards nights or conferences for example, or can be placed next to another table to create additional seating. They could also be used to round off a row of rectangular seating, or as part of a buffet table for convenient access for all guests.



Depending on the type of event you are hosting, guests may spend the majority of their time sitting down. Therefore,  the chairs you choose need to offer both style and comfort. Our selection of banqueting chairs includes modern and traditional styles, all of which are stackable to offer increased efficiency for non-permanent applications.

Modern banquet chairs

Modern chairs featuring steel frames and straight edges are popular for events such as conferences, due to their versatility of design for a number of different settings. Our Harrow and Cambridge Steel Stacking Chairs are perfect for use around tables or as rows of seating, with armchair options also available to provide even more comfort.

Traditional banquet chairs

Traditional chairs such as our Buckingham and Chiavari Stacking Chairs are the ideal choice for weddings and other celebrations. Thanks to their simple, classic design, they are perfect as they are, with a choice of gold, silver or limewash frame, but may also be dressed up with chair covers and bows to match any décor and colour scheme.


If you are going to be reusing your banquet chairs, again and again, it’s important to choose a fabric and design that will go with all manner of colour schemes and venues. At Trent Furniture, we upholster all of our banquet chairs onsite in our UK factory, making each one to order. This means we can provide more than 70 fabric choices, from tartan to suede, blue to red.

We use the highest quality British fire-resistant upholstery foam on our banquet chairs to ensure all venue safety regulations are met. We even supply individual banquet seat pads designed to fit our Henley and Chiavari chairs so you can transform the look of your seating or give it a new lease of life by simply swapping out the pad.


A banquet of any kind is a celebration so you want to make sure everything is just right, starting with the furniture. If you would like to find out more about our range of banquet tables, chairs, and furniture storage trolleys, browse our site or get in touch to speak to our experts about your requirements.

Rustic furniture doesn't have to mean old-fashioned or inelegant. In fact, there are plenty of rustic options that work incredibly well as contemporary pub furniture.

That's because rustic pub furniture makes use of some classic characteristics such as simple lines, solid construction and durable materials.

By definition, rustic furniture should be sturdy and hard-wearing, all of which makes it an excellent addition to your pub furniture if you want tables and chairs that will last a long time with regular to heavy use.

Does rustic furniture mean old-fashioned?

Not necessarily. Rustic furniture can be bang on trend - our Hairpin Table is a timeless design, but its hairpin legs are perfectly in step with current fashions in interior design.

Hairpin Table

Instead of a single column, each leg features three rods arranged in an inverted triangular pyramid shape, which distributes weight for a deceptively sturdy structure.

Dusseldorf Hairpin Stools also feature hairpin legs, teamed with a golden tan suede upholstered seat for a look that is both retro and current.

This is just one example of a 21st century trend that takes its inspiration from the past - a design paradox that rustic furniture manages to bring together into timeless tables and chairs.

Is rustic furniture unattractive?

Not at all. 'Rustic' doesn't mean a lack of elegant design - quite the opposite in fact, as rustic furniture often has minimal construction and clean, straight lines.

Look no further than the Bauhaus-inspired Munich Retro Chair and Bavaria Chair for proof of this.

Bavaria retro chair   Munich retro chair

Their tubular steel frames make use of an iconic and timeless cantilever design, eliminating the need for back legs, while subtle plastic glides protect wood, tiled and stone floors.

The mid-2020s will mark the centenary of cantilever chairs. The shape and materials have hardly changed in the past 100 years, and they're still as popular as ever.

Does rustic mean bare wood?

Natural materials - including wood - are common in rustic furniture, and also in pub furniture, which is one reason why they make a perfect pairing.

But rustic doesn't have to mean hard wood seats. There are plenty of other options, from simple ergonomic wooden seats like our Dalton Chair, to upholstered armchairs.

For a glimpse at the variety offered by rustic pub furniture, take a look at the following options:

These are perfect for a classic or contemporary pub, or a retro feel. Our Autumn and Cappuccino upholstery fabrics are also available on Rimini and Abbruzzo dining chairs to complete your pub furniture with even more versatility.

Rustic pub furniture

The list goes on...

These examples are just a snapshot of our range of rustic pub furniture, which caters for every eventuality.

Whatever interior design trend you are following - whether it is current, retro, or a timeless combination of the two - rustic furniture can help you to achieve it.

If you would like to order any of our rustic pub furniture with custom upholstery, please contact our sales office on 0116 2989 835 and we can discuss the fabric options.



Discover the secrets of timeless furniture pieces, and why it is customers love them so much.

A good piece of pub, restaurant or hotel furniture will stand the test of time, with customers returning to sit in their favourite chair time after time.

Think of Martin's armchair in Frasier - which was the central plot point in entire episodes - or the Central Perk sofa in Friends, which was permanently reserved for the six stars of the show.

In 2019, the Friends sofa went on tour to mark the 25th anniversary of the show, proving how a much-loved piece of cafe furniture can win hearts and minds.

So how can you attract the affections of your own patrons using furniture? Here are five examples of cafe, hotel, restaurant and pub furniture that's sure to keep customers coming back for more.

1. The Chesterfield Sofa

Chesterfield Sofa

With its buttoned upholstery and deep, straight sides, the Chesterfield Sofa is among the most iconic furniture designs of all time.

It's available in a selection of sizes:

Use them together to cater for odd-sized groups or put a single Chesterfield Sofa in an alcove or waiting area for instant style and comfort.

2. The Tulip Table

Tulip Table

Eero Saarinen's 1956 collection of furniture, the Tulip Group (also known as the Pedestal Group), introduced an iconic, organic shape that spanned tables, chairs and stools.

All used a single central pedestal as their support, which flared out at the bottom into a wide, stable base - and it is this curved silhouette that defines the Tulip Table to this day.

It's also extremely practical. Tulip Tables don't have legs at their corners or edges, so diners can sit at any position around their circumference. Yet the broad base makes them highly stable.

Options like our Farmhouse Tulip Table in Dark Oak give you all these advantages, in an eco-friendly and timeless hardwood finish that coordinates well with other items.

3. The Shaker Coffee Table

Shaker Coffee Table

Shaker furniture was originally developed by a religious sect, the United Society of Believers in Christ's Second Appearing, who believed in minimal, well-made designs.

The Shaker Coffee Table is a perfect example, using straight lines and solid, sturdy construction, and is a reliable addition to restaurant and cafe furniture or low comfy seating areas in pubs.

For a consistent collection of pub or restaurant furniture, add ladder-back chairs, which are another hallmark of Shaker furniture design.

4. The Windsor Chair

Windsor Chair

The defining feature of a Windsor Chair is that the back consists of vertical slats or rods that are pushed into holes drilled in the seat. The legs may be attached from underneath in the same way.

It's a technique that may be used across a range of different designs, including:

  • Slatback Chairs
  • Fanback Chairs
  • Spindleback Chairs
  • Wheelback Chairs
  • Fiddleback Chairs

These are all generally made of hardwood, or of a modern composite material with a timber-like appearance.

Dark oak is an especially popular finish and will look great among other restaurant, pub and hotel furniture.

5. Console Table

Console Table

Strictly speaking, a Console Table should be fixed to a wall using brackets, but over the years that definition has become fuzzy around the edges.

Nowadays, it's not unusual to see sturdy, self-supporting Console Tables used as versatile additions to hotel, restaurant and pub furniture, even sometimes positioned freestanding away from walls.

A slim Console Table can be a useful item to place behind a sofa - which for obvious reasons is normally known as a Sofa Table - to give customers an extra shelf to place their coats and jackets, or to put their drinks down if there is no table nearby.

If you’re looking to purchase timeless furniture pieces for your venue, contact us today and our team will be happy to help.


When it comes to buying new restaurant furniture, don't forget to invest in the best front of house furniture to make the right first impression on your customers.

Talk about renovating a house and someone will eventually mention kerb appeal - making sure the property is warm and welcoming on first arrival.

Yet people often don't put the same focus on making front of house furniture welcoming for diners from the moment they walk through your door.

At Trent Furniture we believe that from your reception desk and waiting area, through to your bar furniture and dining furniture, is all part of the same positive experience for patrons.

On arrival

Give your guests a clear place to stand while they wait to be seated, especially if there's no maitre d there to serve them immediately.

This not only gives them confidence about whether to wait or try to find a table of their own, it also prevents 'lost' customers from wandering through your dining area.

Of course the COVID-19 outbreak has heightened the risks involved with errant customers, but it's good practice at any time to keep them in the right places on your premises.

You don't need a lot of room to do this. Small front of house furniture can do a lot with a small space, especially when combined with an easily visible 'Please wait to be seated' sign.

While waiting

If a table is not yet ready for a particular diner or group, they will need somewhere to wait, so some kind of seating area is essential.

Many restaurants are likely to have an area set out with bar furniture where diners can order pre-dinner drinks while their table is prepared. This can be a great way to generate drinks sales whilst keeping early guests happy as they wait to be seated.

Options for smaller restaurant spaces

With smaller restaurants, it can feel uncomfortable for seated guests to have waiting patrons stood near their tables, so providing even a small waiting area is a good move.

Poseur tables in a restaurant

Poseur tables

If you're working with limited floor space, you still have some fantastic options. Poseur tables are the tall tables you see in pubs and bars, and can be combined with elegant stools like our tall Napoli stool to give groups somewhere to perch for as long as required.

Adding comfort with sofas and armchairs

If you do have the floor space, consider adding sofas or armchairs to allow patrons to sit back and relax with a drink before their meal.

Chesterfield sofa

Our Chesterfield sofa

The Chesterfield sofa adds instant style to any seating area with its luxurious faux leather finish. We also have Chesterfield armchairs as well as two-seater and three-seater Chesterfield sofas, and our Berwick Buttoned Back Bench which is like a Chesterfield but without the arms at the ends.

This makes it more compact, for example to fit into an alcove or any space over 120cm wide and demonstrates how small front of house furniture can transform an unused corner into a comfy waiting area for guests on arrival.

Shop our full range of restaurant furniture



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