It should be glowing orange, but the ash layer is optional. Recommended: Learn what business insurance for your Hookah Lounge will cost.
It also includes licensing and insurance. The other costs include sourcing useable hookahs and shisha. Typically, a lounge will carry between 10 and 30 hookahs. Ongoing expenses include rent, utilities, cleaning, hookah replacement, and shisha replacement.
Because hookah smokers need to be at least 18 years old, the hookah-smoking culture can be chaotic. Hookahs are fragile, and a hookah lounge owner will lose money if their hookahs are broken. Every lost hookah reduces the overall number of people who will buy services. Ideal customers are quiet. Hookah lounges make a lot of money from familiars, often creating deals and discounts for them. A hookah lounge makes most of its money by giving patrons a hookah to smoke.
Normally, one hookah is shared between two and four people. A large bowl, for example, may burn longer. For this reason, it costs more to smoke. Hookah lounges can also make money by selling shisha separately. Or, they can sell hookahs and hookah accessories. These accessories include coals, hoses, and vases. Other hookah lounges may sell food or even alcoholic beverages. To become more profitable, you should create incentives. Because shisha is a niche form of entertainment, a lot of customers will return to hookah bars with unique atmospheres.
Consider adopting a discount plan, rewarding returning customers, or offering food and drinks. Choosing the right name is very important. Then, when registering a business name we recommend checking if the business name is available in your state, federally by doing a trademark search, searching the web, and making sure the name you choose is available as a web domain to secure it early so no one else can take it. Establishing a legal business entity such as an LLC prevents you from being personally liable if your hookah lounge is sued.
You should also consider using a registered agent service to help protect your privacy and stay compliant. You will need to register for a variety of state and federal taxes before you can open for business. When your personal and business accounts are mixed, your personal assets your home, car, and other valuables are at risk in the event your business is sued.
In business law, this is referred to as piercing your corporate veil. Additionally, learning how to build business credit can help you get credit cards and other financing in your business's name instead of yours , better interest rates, higher lines of credit, and more. Read our Best Banks for Small Business guide to find the best national bank, credit union, business-loan friendly banks, one with many brick-and-mortar locations, and more.
Recommended: BlueVine is an online bank with free business checking and no hidden fees. Great for businesses who do not often deal with cash. Recommended: Read our guide to find the best small business credit cards. Recording your various expenses and sources of income is critical to understanding the financial performance of your business. Keeping accurate and detailed accounts also greatly simplifies your annual tax filing. Failure to acquire necessary permits and licenses can result in hefty fines, or even cause your business to be shut down.
Certain state permits and licenses may be needed to operate a hookah lounge. Most businesses are required to collect sales tax on the goods or services they provide. To learn more about how sales tax will affect your business, read our article, Sales Tax for Small Businesses. A hookah lounge is generally run out of a storefront. Businesses operating out of a physical location typically require a Certificate of Occupancy CO. A CO confirms that all building codes, zoning laws and government regulations have been met.
When selling food, you will need licensing from a local health department; all establishments serving food are required to pass a health inspection. Tips for faring well on a health inspections. There are federal regulations regarding what can and cannot be added to, sold as, and processed with food.
Attached is a resource from the Food and Drug Administration detailing the process of starting a food business: How to Start a Food Business. Just as with licenses and permits, your business needs insurance in order to operate safely and lawfully. There are several types of insurance policies created for different types of businesses with different risks.
Recommended: Learn what business insurance for your Hookah Lounge will cost. Your brand is what your company stands for, as well as how your business is perceived by the public. A strong brand will help your business stand out from competitors. Fortunately, hookah lounge promotion takes care of itself. Word of mouth, normally, will suffice. Because smoking shisha is a social event, customers will flock to whichever lounge offers the best amenities and prices.
Normally, this includes: a low shisha price, loose smoking restrictions, informative staff, an interesting environment, and good deals. A business website allows customers to learn more about your company and the products or services you offer. You can also use social media to attract new clients or customers. Select your state below for an in-depth guide on completing each of these steps in your home state. A hookah lounge is a good business for entrepreneur types, diner lovers, and tobacco connoisseurs.
Entrepreneurship Quiz. A hookah lounge owner is in charge of setting up hookahs for people to smoke. A lounge owner needs to make sure all the hookah pipe pieces are clean. A lounge owner charges customers, keeps track of payments, and cleans the establishment. Hookah lounges are typically small, and they can be operated by a single person.
Some hookah lounge owners stock hookahs for sale. They can also sell shisha, hookah hoses, hookah bowls, and other accessories. You simply may not legally be able to open a hookah bar in certain places and in some places, you won't be able to sell food with your hookah. For example, New York City requires that hookah bar owners get a non-tobacco hookah establishment permit; however, they are no longer issuing new permits.
For example, in New York state, you have to register to pay sales tax before you can get a license. This can be denied due to a number of stipulations. If your establishment is selling food, you will need separate permits for that. The air inside hookah bars is loaded with carbon monoxide, and secondhand smoke causes health problems. Part of your hookah lounge setup should include a commercial air-filtration system designed to eliminate smoke known in the business as a smoke eater along with a comprehensive HVAC system.
Your hookah lounge setup should include:. Your setup should also include typical lounge furniture like tables and chairs. The final part of your hookah lounge setup should include hiring dedicated employees who are knowledgeable about the culture of hookah. Also enact a solid marketing plan to get the word out about your brand-new business.
Remember: There are regulations about how you can market tobacco products , but you should be able to market a non-tobacco establishment pretty freely. Mariel Loveland is a small business owner, content strategist and writer from New Jersey.
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