Designers Guide—Seating Standards

June 2, 2016

Seating Standards—Providing comfortable, spacious seating for your diners to relax is very important to the success of your establishment.

The following guidelines lay forth seating layout standards for booths and tables to create a pleasant seating environment for your guests. At Soft Touch Furniture, our furniture always meets these guidelines, which helps ensure your guests feel comfortable in your establishment. As always, check with your local codes to see if there are any special spacing requirements.

Can we help you with your design project in any way? Contact us here.


Booth Dimensions

A. Total booth width 66″–84″
B. Seat back depth 3″–6″
C. Seat back-to-table
edge clearance
D. Table width 24″–42″
E. Table edge to back
of seat cushion
F. Tabletop height 29″–30″
G. Seat height 18″–19 1/2″

Table Dimensions

A. Total area required
for table
B. Tabletop width 24″–42″
C. Customer traffic
and seating area
D. Customer seating area 18″–24″
E. Traffic area 18″–36″
F. Tabletop height 29″–30″
G. Seat height 16″–18″

Bar Dimensions

A. Outer bar edge to wall 76″–84″
B. Outer bar edge to back wall 84″–104″
C. Outer bar edge to
drinking shelf
D. Outer bar edge to
equipment edge
E. Behind bar traffic area 30″–36″
F. Back bar depth 24″–30″
G. Drinking shelf depth 10″–12″
H. Drinking shelf customer area 18″
I. Customer traffic area 30″
J. Bar seating area 18″–24″
K. Bar depth 18″–24″
L. Footstep depth 6″–9″
M. Footstep height 7″–9″
N. Room divider screen (high) 76″
O. Room divider screen (low) 55″
P. Drinking shelf height 42″–45″
Q. Top of barstool to
bottom of bar
R. Depth of behind–
bar equipment
S. Behind–bar
equipment height
T. Bar height 42″–45″
U. Back bar height 36″–42″
V. Back wall shelf height 60″–69″

Counter Dimensions

A. Customer seating area 12″–18″
B. Counter depth 18″–24″
C. Service traffic area 36″
D. Seat height 30″–31″
E. Footstep height 12″
F. Depth of counter underside 10″
G. Top of seat to
underside of counter
H. Counter height 42″
I. Back service counter height 36″


Height Choices—There are several different height options for tables, chairs, and booths.

As the height of your furniture can greatly affect the feel of your establishment, there are things to keep in mind when choosing the height of your furniture: What atmosphere do you what to have (casual vs. formal)? Are there any regulations that you need to be aware of? Are there any architectural features of your space which may help determine the size of your furniture (lower ceiling, etc.)? Once you answer these questions

Can we help you with your design project in any way? Contact us here.


Standard Height

This is typically a table height of 28″—30″ and a seat height of 18″. It is the most common height in restaurants. Not only do most people find this height very comfortable, it is also the only height that complies with ADA regulations.


Counter Height

This is typically a table height of 34″–36″ and a seat height of 26″. They are typically more casual and make it easier to talk with people who may be standing. They can work well in small areas because they give the illusion that they take up less space.


Bar Height

This is typically a table height of 40″– 42″ and a seat height of 30″. This taller, thinner height is very good for small spaces (and perfect for “bar area” tables). They have the same advantages as counter height furniture but even more so. And because the difference between standing and sitting is so minimal, they create an extremely casual, “fun” atmosphere.