Originally Posted by CPill
Since you're in AZ... there's a few Tempe lounges to check out and get some ideas:
King Tuts - 1125 E Apache Blvd. They have raised sections for specifically hookahs. 4 raised booths closed booths, and one larger raised section for more people. the hookah area is ALL on pillows and cushiony mats. very authentic looking
Hubbly Bubbly - southwest corner of apache + Mcclintock. modern style with some tv's and very soft couches, dim lighting and black lights. ((well, they JUST moved there and havent been in there but their LAST lounge was set up that way))
Cafe Istanbul - 1310 E Apache Blvd # 101. lounge is upstairs over their shop + cafe. it's all comfortable couches, not necessarily modern though. Many decorations for a Middle eastern theme.
((i'm not commenting on their services, some are better than others... but their setups are worth a looksee))
As far as riff raff coming into a pool hall... i'll second that. The place i FIRST started my hookah journey was a poolhall/hookah lounge... and i became good friends with the owner and he worked for a very very long time establishing a clientele with good people and kicking out the unwanted people. a LONG process. BUT i do love playing pool and smoking. Nothing better.
But my BIGGEST recommendation... please keep the music volume down. I HATE having to YELL to my friends sitting right next to me.
I plan to keep the music level very low, enough that you can hear it, but not loud that you have to speak loudly for someone a few feet away to here you. For the music selection, I plan on having a chill mix of middle eastern mixes, reggae, etc. I might also play some sublime, marley, etc.
I have been to a few of the ones you listed, their main focus is the food, not the hookah. I plan to have a variety of cafe type foods, but I want to offer great hookahs and great shisha, I am not going to skimp out just to make a few extra dollars each month.
Originally Posted by patelbadboy2006
The main thing is get decent seats, don't cheap out on them, they have to be nice and relaxing
And don't get a pool table its a waste of space and people only do one or the other, play pool or smoke, the place i go to, the shisha is crap but they have great atmospehere and we play pol.
V.I.P area is a good idea, maybe if you have enough space have enclosed rooms, so people who want to smoke privatly can, and people that like socialising can do that as well, but it all depends on the floor layout and how much space you have.
Also i have been to some shisha bars where they are massive pillows on the floor and you sit on the floor and relax, like shisha bars in india
You might also need to think about, is the only reason people gonna come is for the shisha, lets face it most shisha in shisha cafes are crap, not saying your's will be, but you might need another attraction for people to come, like good food, or even a little game's area when big games are on, people can come chill smoke drink etc and watch the game
The giant pillows are a great idea, I am looking into seating options now.
I cannot have alcohol due to the laws, so its going to be limited to soft drinks and bottled drinks.