Bar Business Ideas

Want to start a bar but need a different angle? Dive into our list of 30 fantastic bar business ideas to find the inspiration you need.

Starts at $0 + state fees and only takes 5-10 minutes

Excellent 4.7 out of 5 stars 14,961 reviews

Bars are often the go-to place for people looking for a night out, a place to gather with friends, or just somewhere to relax. They come in countless variations, catering to different crowds and tastes. If you’re looking to become a bar owner, finding a unique concept that stands out from the crowd is key. In this article, we explore 30 different bar business ideas that could help shape your venture into something truly exceptional.

30 Ideas for Opening a Bar

When you’re starting a business, ideas are essential, and bars are no exception. Check out these 30 different bar ideas to spark inspiration for yours. 

1. Sports Bar

A well-executed sports bar is a home away from home for sports fans. With multiple screens, a selection of beers, and a menu featuring fan favorites, it’s a winning combination for those seeking to mix leisure with their love for sports.

2. Craft Beer Bar

With the craft beer scene still thriving, this is one of the cool ideas for bars that appeals to the growing number of craft beer enthusiasts seeking unique and local brews.

3. Cocktail Lounge

Offering a sophisticated atmosphere, cocktail lounges cater to patrons who appreciate expertly mixed drinks and classic cocktails. These bars often attract potential customers who prefer a trendy, upscale space.

4. Wine Bar

Wine bars attract a wide variety of patrons, from seasoned connoisseurs to casual drinkers. These bars often feature extensive wine lists and knowledgeable staff who can recommend pairings with gourmet food selections.

5. Whiskey Bar

A whiskey bar is a haven for lovers of this classic spirit. Consider offering tasting flights, hosting educational events, and featuring both popular and lesser-known labels.

6. Dive Bar

A local watering hole with a relaxed, unpretentious atmosphere. Dive bars are known for their affordability, friendly staff, and loyal customer base.

7. Themed Bar

A themed bar can range from a 1920s speakeasy to a pirate tavern. The possibilities are nearly limitless, making this one of the most fun and creative bar ideas for a business.

8. Rooftop Bar

With a view that’s hard to beat, rooftop bars can easily become a go-to spot for city-dwellers looking to unwind. Create the perfect spot for regular customers to enjoy pleasant summer evenings and beautiful city vistas.

9. Speakeasy

Hidden bars with a Prohibition-era theme are often intimate and ooze vintage charm, offering a unique night out.

10. Karaoke Bar

For those who love to perform or just enjoy the spectacle, a karaoke bar can offer unforgettable nights full of laughter and music.

11. Music Venue Bar

From local bands to bigger acts, hosting live music can set your bar apart. It’s a great way to support local artists and attract a music-loving crowd.

12. Pub or Tavern

The local pub or tavern often serves as a community hub for relaxing slow nights, where people gather for good food, drinks, and conversation.

13. LGBTQ+ Bar

Creating a safe and inclusive space for the LGBTQ+ community can help cater to a specific demographic while promoting diversity and inclusivity in the bar industry and beyond.

14. Gaming Bar

A bar with arcade games, board games, or video games can be a big hit. Pair this with themed menu items like drinks and snacks for a full experience.

15. Brewpub or Distillery Bar

These are perfect for those who not only appreciate beer and spirits but also the process of making them.

16. Pop-Up or Mobile Bar

This is a flexible, fun option for serving drinks at various events and locations. And since a mobile bar can be large or small, it can be a great starting point for small business owners.

17. Beach Bar

If you’re located near the coast, a beach bar can offer the perfect place for patrons to enjoy a drink while taking in the ocean views.

18. Juice Bar

A healthy alternative to traditional bars, juice bars can serve smoothies, fresh-pressed juice, and health shots.

19. Cigar Bar

For those who appreciate a good cigar with their drink, a cigar bar can offer a specialized, sophisticated atmosphere.

20. Ice Bar

Unique and Instagram-worthy, an ice bar is a cool bar idea that can attract patrons looking for a unique experience.

21. Comedy Club Bar

Combine drinks with laughs by hosting stand-up comedy nights, open mic nights, and more.

22. Coffee Bar

A coffee bar can cater to the daytime crowd, serving a variety of hot and cold caffeinated beverages.

23. Biker Bar

A biker bar can be a great gathering place for motorcycle enthusiasts and other patrons alike.

24. VR Bar

Incorporating virtual reality into your bar can make for an exciting and unusual experience.

25. Tapas Bar

Serving a variety of small dishes, or “tapas,” alongside drinks can satisfy patrons’ cravings for both food and drinks.

26. Hookah Bar

For those who enjoy the social aspect of smoking hookah, a hookah bar can provide a relaxed, communal atmosphere.

27. Wine and Paint Bar

Combining a creative activity with wine is a fun and relaxing experience so your potential customers can enjoy a calm, slow night.

28. Sake Bar

Cater to fans of Japanese culture with a sake bar that serves a variety of this traditional rice wine.

29. Tequila or Mezcal Bar

Offering a range of high-quality tequilas or mezcals can appeal to those who appreciate these Mexican spirits.

30. Non-Alcoholic Bar

Cater to non-drinkers or those looking for a sober night out with creative non-alcoholic beverages.

Need help on getting started or figuring out a good name for your bar? Check out: How to Open a Bar and Bar Name Ideas

We can help!

Once you’ve decided on your bar concept, the next step is making it official. This is where ZenBusiness can help. Our LLC formation service can help you get started for $0, and we’ll provide professional support every step of the way. We can also continue supporting you with registered agent service, worry-free compliance, and more. Let us make it easy for you so you can focus on turning your business ideas into reality.

Disclaimer: The content on this page is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, tax, or accounting advice. If you have specific questions about any of these topics, seek the counsel of a licensed professional.

zenbusiness logo

Written by Team ZenBusiness

Bar Business Idea FAQs

  • A bar can indeed be a great business idea if approached correctly. The success of a bar largely depends on a few key factors: location, concept, target demographic, and the local competition. Having a unique concept (and a clever name) that differentiates you from other bars and resonates with your target customers can often lead to a successful venture. It’s also important to note that running a bar requires substantial time, energy, and a strong understanding of the hospitality industry. An excellent marketing strategy helps, too.

  • The profitability of a bar can significantly vary depending on its type and location. However, generally, sports bars, high-end cocktail lounges, and bars with a unique theme or concept tend to be quite profitable. Sports bars draw consistent crowds and a steady stream of income on game days, and cocktail lounges cater to patrons willing to pay a premium for a sophisticated atmosphere and quality drinks. Themed bars, on the other hand, can attract customers looking for a unique experience.

  • Profitability in the bar business varies greatly based on factors like location, overhead costs, drink prices, and customer traffic. While some bars make modest profits, others can be quite lucrative. According to industry reports, the average profit margin for bars ranges between 10-15%. However, highly successful establishments in prime real estate locations can see much higher returns. Profitability also depends greatly on effective management and controlling startup costs and beyond.

  • Attracting customers to your bar involves a mixed traditional yet innovative marketing plan. First, make sure your bar offers a unique experience, atmosphere, or specialty that sets you apart from competitors. Then, use social media accounts to promote special events, drink specials for your bar’s signature cocktail, or unique features about your bar. Building relationships with customers is crucial; consider loyalty programs or special deals for loyal customers. Hosting events like trivia nights, live music, or themed parties can also attract customers. Lastly, providing top-notch customer service can turn first-time visitors into regulars.

Start a Business in Your State

Popular States for Starting a Small Business

Start Your Bar Today!