Opening A Restaurant In Dubai? Here’s How Much It Will Cost You


Raise your hand if you’ve ever dreamed of opening a restaurant?

Have you ever thought about how much it costs? I’ll tell you now, friends… It ain’t cheap.

Dubai is unique in that we boast food from all over the world, from street food to fine dining, and there are foodie hubs and haunts cropping up throughout the city. If you’re interested in food, there’s no better place to be, and if you’re ever thought about opening your own spot, you’re not alone.

Now, Restaurant Secrets Inc, a team of expert Restaurant Consultants & Business Incubators
in the UAE looked at the cost of opening a restaurant, factoring in size, location, and type of venue. It’s in-depth, they give details on specific business models to offer a well-rounded view of the cost of opening a restaurant here.

Want to open a hole-in-the-wall, a full-service restaurant, or invest in a dark kitchen? Here are the costs


The full-service restaurant

If you want to run a restaurant and offer your guests the full experience of dining in, service, and delivery, the full-service option is the business model for you. The full-service restaurant guide requires the most resources and effort in operation, financial control, and location sourcing, according to the report.

Rents in Downtown to Jumeirah can cost between $70 and $275 per sq ft. and the average lease space is between 1,500 to up 5,000. The annual leases of these spaces could set you back anywhere between USD 70,000 to more than USD 1,000,000 and design averages between USD 150 to up to USD 600 per square foot.

The bigger your space, the higher your turnover, and other factors to see profitable returns include building a strong concept, great product and maintaining industry standards in operational control.

They total the average capital expenditure to $500,000 and above for restaurants delivering prime location, ‘Instagramable’ interiors, great product, and overall brand and marketing.

The dark kitchen

Not looking to spend %500,000? The cheaper alternatives for restauranteurs to-be are dark kitchens and hole-in-the-wall kitchen concepts.

Dark kitchens are hugely popular with some restaurants turning to the delivery-only concept to immediately reduces the price of rent, staff, service and decor costs.

Captial expenditure for a dark kitchen kicks off at about $100,000 annually.

The hole-in-the-wall

The max space for a hole-in-the-wall is about 1,000 sq ft, and some of the most famous concepts in the city begin in small spaces and scale thanks to loyal guests and word of mouth.

A small menu, reduced staff, and minimum interior design help reduce the cost for this concept, however, you should still aim for a prominent location, great product, online presence, as well as factoring in additional marketing budgets.

Surprisingly, expenditure for a hole-in-the-wall will set you back $250,000, according to the report.

When you see your dream of opening a coffee shop going down the toilet


Read next: Good News! Abu Dhabi Will Lift Travel Quarantine In July

This is great news for international travellers who have eyes on visiting the UAE capital as it looks like Abu Dhabi will open up for international travellers from July 1, by lifting quarantine restrictions for travellers from green list countries, according to reports from the Arabian Travel Market.

The Arabian Travel Market (ATM) is happening right now and HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai has welcomed everyone to the important international event.

In his tweet he added that Dubai welcomes the world as global tourism begins to recover, representing ‘the light at the end of the tunnel’. He shared the remarks on the opening day of the ATM, which coincided with the news that Abu Dhabi announced it would reopen to international visitors on July 1.


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