Coffee Bar at University


New member
Oct 18, 2004
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Hello -
For years I have been speculating opening a coffee shop and have been undecided in whether I should go with a cafe or a bar. I have thought about opening one at the local University campus but I'm not sure where to begin. I have managed a coffee shop before (however it went out of business due to bad ownership - and bad location) I don't want to make her same mistakes -
So the big question - can I open a private business on the university campus? 2) WHERE DO I BEGIN!!!!!

Hi Kimi,

A University Campus is a great place to look at proposed locations, also hospitals, office buildings, etc. I would first look at what the University has done as far as specialty coffee retail shops. You may also look at locations just off University property (still with heavy foot traffic) which you may have more luck aquiring.

Depending on how much you want to invest and what kind of menu you plan on offering you should try to determine your concept early on. You could be looking at doing a small Kiosk offering Specialty Coffee Beverages or a full coffeehouse with live music and you may want to offer panini sanwiches, beer and wine for the evening crowds.

Before consulting we owned a cafe just off a University campus that was very successful. Would love to talk in more detail!
welcome all

I'm leaning towards the kiosk/cart area, and in fact have helped clients set up in locations like that. The beauty of the cart end, you aren't intruding upon the already established structures and are in fact able to utalize facilities that would normally cost you a great deal to establish from scratch.

Where I"d start out with is simply calling your county health department, tell them what you want to do, and they'll send you a neat little packet which contains the majority of what you are going to normally have to do regardless, so I value it highly as a significant place to start.

In some counties, there will be major issues, but most of those are in southern california, as far as the rest of the standards, even though the carts may have it, doesn't necessarily mean it's mandatory nor has any real long term benifet.

Anyway, to cut this short, PM me, or just post more info to cover.