Ready, set, go!

A few things to consider when setting up your outdoor space – not to worry, it’s totally doable!

It is true that outdoor spaces are now functioning independently from whatever season it is, but it is also true that even weatherproof furniture can sometimes not be enough.

Perhaps you are trying to renovate your venue, or maybe the winter has been a little too harsh; in any case, you are surely thinking of a grand reopening! Of course, like everything, reopening needs planning – and there are a few things to consider while getting ready for warmer times!

To make sure all our readers are fully equipped for ‘operation renovation’, we have directed our questions to professionals around the UK – lucky for us, they had all the answers!

Digital Media Manager at The Pod Newport, Emma Young, breaks the ice: “We like to start planning our outdoor space at the beginning of the year. It is important we get our furniture, sun terrace and beer garden reconditioned (or replaced, if necessary) to ensure our guests experience only the highest standard in outdoor hospitality. No one wants to sit on splintered seats, shelter under broken umbrellas, or feel like the area has been neglected.”

The Pod Newport is a unique, gritty, New York-inspired gin and cocktail bar, bringing a touch of class both inside and out. Tasty street food, Sunday lunch and gin serves are available Wednesday to Sunday along with some of the best cocktails in town.

The recently installed ‘Party Pods’ make The Pod Newport THE place to meet, catch-up or celebrate with friends and family, and they are a great example of clever outdoor design. “These water and wind proof structures,” Emma explains, “allow guests to enjoy the outdoors whatever the weather. They have also been a fantastic option for those who don’t feel quite ready to sit inside with other guests.”

The ‘pod trend’ was born a few years ago but has lately discovered a newly-found fame, increased or even caused by the conditions of the last two years.

Emma tells us a bit more about the early days of their business: “When we designed our outdoor space, we knew inclement weather would be our biggest enemy. Situated on the banks of the River Usk, the wind and rain is often relentless. We decided to set up some gazebos, industrial heaters, and now party pods to turn to in those occasions where umbrellas were simply not enough to guarantee the comfort of our guests.”

The Pod takes customer satisfaction with great seriousness, and one of the ways that contributes to a great experience is a level of service that is just as good. In order to do that, the team at The Pod have built a great network for themselves; from a functional relationship with local providers, to having the best contacts in the repair trade.

“We have a great rapport with many local tradesmen and businesses,” says Emma. “These people are our go-to once we have our itinerary of works ready. These local trades work their magic in repair and restorative work before the finer weather arrives. We couldn’t be ‘beer-garden-ready’ without them.”

Speaking of business partners – General Manager at My Tent, Marcus Williams, shares their take on the matter, revealing how the desire of an efficient dynamic is at the top of their priorities. The Team at My Tent have worked for years to get to know the UK weather as deeply as possible to find the best solutions, and they work toward satisfying their clients’ every need when creating all-weather stretch tent covers.

“We understand weather; in fact, we are obsessed with it,” says Marcus.  “That’s why we collaborate with our bar and pub clients to build made-to-measure stretch tents that are durable, safe and protect punters from all types of (British) weather using a fully waterproof poly-cotton fabric.”

Marcus knows all the secrets about outdoor spaces and has some precious tips when it comes to getting your venue ready. MyTent create tents for every scenario and their main goal is to keep create a tent that looks chic, is waterproof and does as much as possible to enhance and transform the space.

“When you’re preparing your outdoor space,” says Marcus, “look closely at the elements that will keep your customers in the outdoor space, having a great time. Maybe you want to install TV screens for the footy or rugby? Or host al fresco club nights with a DJ? Perhaps you have dreams of a Sunday afternoon cook off with a sizzling BBQ – a hot tub, even!”

Having a direct dialogue with your providers will make the process a thousand times easier, and it will ensure that the final product is as close to your projects as possible. Marcus says: “Whatever you plan to do creatively, we can help you think logically about the space to keep your customers dry and shaded. We can help with the customer journey by looking at the best way to enhance your outdoor area, taking into account everything from the sun to torrential downpours and wind direction.”

As you can tell by now, there’s a fair few matters to take care of when it comes to getting your venue ready for spring (and all of the other seasons), but it is also a very viable option that gives your business that ‘something more’, and the opportunity to host many more guests any time.

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