A melting pot of people from different cultures with varied food preferences, Dubai offers one of the best venues in the Middle East to open a restaurant business. At present, the city already plays host to an exotic mix of restaurants that offer virtually every known cuisine from around the world, including many specializing in Dubai’s local favourite foods.
However, as is the case with every business, there are certain guidelines that need to be followed prior to opening a restaurant in Dubai. For starters, a UAE national or local sponsor typically needs to be taken onboard as a 51% partner to create a company. Such a company has the freedom to locate the business almost anywhere in the city. Those wishing to maintain 100% ownership of their business, can opt for a Free Zone license and entity however this may limit their real estate opportunities.
Choosing a location that optimizes suitability, convenience and costs is crucial. Setting up a restaurant in the city wouldn’t do you much good, if your customers cannot reach you. A tenancy contract must be concluded only after satisfying the availability of basic amenities like electricity and gas provisions, chilled water and exhaust provisions, accessibility, parking amenities, etc.
For any new business venture in the UAE, a visa permitting you and your employees to live in the UAE is essential to run your restaurant. Visas are available for almost all types of businesses. However, their number may vary depending on the criteria set, which includes the size of the establishment, nature of the business and category of the employee or investor.
Last, but not the least, hiring a competent hospitality consultant who can guide you through the setting up process is a critical step. One of the foremost experts in this field is Ribbon Consulting, a growing hospitality consultancy which has helped set up some popular restaurants in Dubai. With nearly 5 years of delivering customized hospitality solutions, Ribbon’s expertise can help you set up a successful restaurant business that will help you beat the competition.