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June 11, 2020Now Trending

Outdoor bars are the ultimate way to enjoy the warm summer weather while having your clients safely social distance with a cold cocktail in hand. Adding an outdoor bar to your business or backyard is also a great way to make any party more open and fun, with guests enjoying their drinks and conversation out on the lawn or in your outdoor space instead of being packed inside. If you have an outdoor bar at your venue or are thinking of creating one, here are the must-have items you need:

1. Seating

Canopy tents for your bar

Having an outdoor bar is useless if you and your guests don’t have a space to sit and enjoy their drinks. Adding seating to your outdoor area near your bar not only gives you ample space to sit and enjoy the outdoors, but it also allows you to incorporate the theme and style of your indoor venue into the space.

For a natural, boho feeling, think outdoor wicker chairs with earth-tone cushions and decor. Wicker has a super cute look, holds up well in harsh weather conditions, and can easily be updated with cushions and throw pillows. It’s a timeless look that always tops the list of outdoor bar ideas.

If you’re trying to create a high-class, sophisticated outdoor bar area, choose seating more sleek and modern. Metal chairs with sleek, silver, black, or gold accents will pop in any area and make your outdoor bar feel chic.

2. Lighting

Backyard Lighting

You can’t make amazing drinks in the dark! All great patio bar ideas include making sure to incorporate lighting. Lighting in and around your outdoor bar enables your staff to see what they’re making, and your guests to see each other and your beautiful outdoor patio.

You can use similar ceiling lights to your inside space if you have a covered patio, or differentiate your outdoor space entirely. With dreamy string lights, standing lamps, solar path lights and more, the lighting possibilities for your outdoor space are endless.

3. Outdoor speakers

Outdoor bar speakers

Sitting outside and enjoying the natural sounds can be quite relaxing. Who doesn’t love listening to birds chirping, water running, and air rustling the trees? But your clients aren’t camping--they’re at your venue! You’ll need to turn up the excitement by having music. It’s an outdoor bar, after all!

A simple way to take your outdoor bar to the next level and provide an awesome experience for your guests is to add speakers to the space. Having music playing as you drink cocktails and enjoy the outdoors will make it that much better. You don’t have to splurge for this, either! You can spend a little more to have outdoor speakers installed if you’d like, but a simple portable speaker will do just fine.

4. Beverage/Wine Cooler

Outdoor bar cooler

A beverage/wine cooler is the easiest way to keep your wine chilled, depending on how much space you have available.

If you have no room for a formal cooling system for your drinks, make sure you have a way to keep ice on hand for when you’re enjoying your outdoor space. Having ice storage or even a portable ice bucket will ensure your drinks are cold when they’re served: an essential outside bar idea.

5. Outdoor Bar Center

Outdoor party

An outdoor bar center keeps everything you need within arms reach, usually including things like a sink and faucet, ice bin, condiment holders, a bottle opener, etc. It also adds a convenient little well for you to store your favorite mixers! Bartending is a breeze when you have an outdoor bar center, and your guests will be thrilled by how quickly and perfectly every drink is made.

6. Outdoor Kegerators

Kegerator for outdoor bar

99 bottles of beer on the wall, 99 bottles of beer - take one down, pass it around - 98 bottles of beer on the wall!

We all know that fun little tune, but what happens when you can’t have beer on the wall of your outdoor bar? Try out an outdoor kegerator! Kegerators are perfect for dispensing beer to your bar guests. You can always fill outdoor kegerators with other beverages as well, depending on your niche, that can be dispensed from a spout--just like tap beer.

7. Outdoor Refrigerator

Outdoor refrigerator for bar

Another one of the big backyard must-haves is an outdoor refrigerator. No one wants a warm drink on a hot day outside! Having a way to keep your liquor, beer, and mixers chilled is essential to having an amazing outdoor bar experience. With an outdoor refrigerator or mini-fridge, your guests will have easy access to cold drinks without having to dump a bunch of ice into a warm drink, only for the ice to melt and your drink to get watered down.

8. Outdoor Ice Maker

Ice maker

An ice maker is an outdoor bar essential - for more reasons than one! We all know there’s nothing better than a cold drink on a warm summer day, so don’t let your drink get hot from sitting in the sun; instead, get an outdoor ice maker! That way you can have fresh ice all day long and avoid the hassle of buying large, individual bags of ice that you’ll have to drag outside and dump into a cooler--which can end up melting in the sun anyways with all the opening and closing of the cooler lid throughout the day. Not only will having an ice maker keep your drinks chilled, but it can also be used to cool off your skin by wrapping some ice in a towel and putting it against your neck.

9. Outdoor tent

Bar tent set up

Speaking of staying cool, you should think about the options for shade you can provide for your outdoor bar. No matter how cold your drinks are, you and your guests will still be sweating buckets on a hot day with the sun baking everything. You’ll also be subject to weather conditions like surprise rain showers. That is unless you have a bar tent!

You might think more formal, one-off events are the only reason for an event tent, but they’re very versatile. In fact, buying a small tent for your venue could be an amazing way to take your outdoor bar to the next level. Whether it’s hot, cold, or pouring rain, you could still enjoy your outdoor bar when you have a bar tent.

Patio tents can come in any size, so whether you set up a small pop up or a large frame tent for a bigger area, you’ll be able to find the right tent for your space. A tent also makes it easier on you to keep things cool, clean, and away from poor weather. Your guests will be clamouring to come over and enjoy your amazing outdoor bar space.

Your outdoor bar deserves to be the coolest, safest, and most relaxing space in the business. We hope these outdoor bar ideas will help you make your bar an amazing outdoor area to enjoy. And if you need to upgrade your outdoor bar with comfortable high-quality tents, American Tent is always happy to help. Just contact us, and we will provide you with the bar tents that are best for your needs.

Tony Ehrbar's headshot

Tony Ehrbar

Owner & CEO

Tony's entrepreneurial spirit is woven into the fabric of American Tent (an Inc 5000 company), shaped by his experience running a successful event venue & tent rental service. His recognition as the Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 2019 is a testament to his impact & dedication to his community. As the Co-founder and CEO of Renegade Plastics, Tony is leading initiatives in the tent industry to integrate eco-friendly, recyclable materials. Contributing as a board member for the Advanced Textiles Association (ATA) & the Green Bay Area Public Schools Foundation and being featured by Entrepreneur, Oracle, & Modern Weddings, Tony plays a pivotal role in enhancing the growth and success of the textile industry.

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