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mushrat

So, You Want To Start A Hookah Lounge : Updated.

262 posts in this topic
[quote name='petesanchez' timestamp='1317357256' post='525767']
Only problem with your business plan is that your competition is THE household name in the area for hookah and a serious powerhouse.... how do you intend to pull clientele away from a lounge that has been serving the best of the hookah world for 5 years running?
[/quote]

and your connection with this POWERHOUSE of hookah bars?

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[url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lsf9_cFnnNY"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lsf9_cFnnNY[/url]

Check out this really cool video me and my friends just made. It may be an inspiration.

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Hey Mush, If you have the time I would like to pick your brain and ask you a few questions haha :). Mind if i use your e-mail?

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Hi my name Eckhart im also looking to open a hookah lounge / restaurant by march 2011 so far i have my menu done im building my own hookahs something pretty special and different, i have a few question but i guess for now:

Any suggestion on shisha brands and suppliers

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I trust you mean 2012? :)

Where will you be located? This will help me recommend the best suppliers.
Also, do you have a business plan? an ein? an actual business entity? that sort of thing? :)

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No, he meant 2011. Not only is he opening a lounge, he is also working on a time machine.

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I've done quite a bit of reading on this topic. I have a question that hasn't been answered anywhere on the internet, however (or I've failed to read)....

I want to open a hookah bar of those cities where there is no smoking indoors. No smoking in restaurants, bars, etc. How do you get around this? Memberships? Depends on the city? I'm wanting to open this in a [b]very very strict[/b] town (Hooters was denied building, dry county, large church which votes on things like this, in Texas, within the "Bible Belt"). I do not currently live in this city, but I see an opportunity.

This is not so much about opening a business - I've already done that (healthcare). I'm looking for ways around this "rule", "law", "ordinance" whatever it is. The closest thing I can think of is a restaurant with a cigar bar on the roof -- open to air. And the owner is brother to the Mayor.

Thanks for you time and help. I realize this is my first post, but I never have time for these things and am an avide lurker of many sites :wub: Edited by TheAnesthetist

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It all depends on the exact wording of your state/local law. If we had that we could possibly work around it but remember, if the local government is against it, they will FIND a way to keep you from opening. Permit hassles, inspection hassles, whatever they feel it takes to enforce their rules.

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This is what I'm worried about the most. I tried opening another business which had to do with scantily glad women (not strip club - but a restaurant) and thought I had a work around. There is no short story, but even after preliminary approval I was shut down.

I doubt I could even find exact wording - if you want the truth. But I'll keep looking into it. I think this would need to be a "hole in the wall" type setup... or make it seem that way. Which concerns me, because if it took off I wouldn't have enough room for customers. And to me long waits or having to turn away people because your business can't handle the crowd is bad for your image. On the other hand, I do think young people in the area would enjoy this and it would be a hit. Edited by TheAnesthetist

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[quote name='TheAnesthetist' timestamp='1320668274' post='530546']
This is what I'm worried about the most. I tried opening another business which had to do with scantily glad women (not strip club - but a restaurant) and thought I had a work around. There is no short story, but even after preliminary approval I was shut down.

I doubt I could even find exact wording - if you want the truth. But I'll keep looking into it. I think this would need to be a "hole in the wall" type setup... or make it seem that way. Which concerns me, because if it took off I wouldn't have enough room for customers. And to me long waits or having to turn away people because your business can't handle the crowd is bad for your image. On the other hand, I do think young people in the area would enjoy this and it would be a hit.
[/quote]
Move to another town?

On the other hand Local law can be overwritten by regional law in some cases.
But as mush said if they don't want you they'll find a way to remove you.
If you even attempt this your going to need friends in high places you said the mayors
Brother owns the place your looking at offer him a slice of the pie and you have your first possible "friend" .
You also need to get on good terms with the health inspector. You will need a good bouncer to keep out riff raff and keep your image up. The police will also be on your case as hookah is often associated with drugs. IF you keep your business imaculate you'll be fine. But Even a momentary lapse in judgement can lead to failure. Edited by S3cretz

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Well, the mayors brother has one of the only places I can think of you can smoke anything - which is cigars. And it's only on the roof, not in the restaurant below.
Everywhere else is no smoking indoors. Period.

I don't even live there, just know the area very well and have friends there. It may just be a curiosity, but I want to know for future reference anyhow, if there is a work around to the smoking indoors issue. Surely there is someone out there who has experienced this? I thought even some clubs in Houston banned smoking indoors now.

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Damnit, just found one article buried a few pages deep....

[quote]At the very end of the smoking ban legislation, there's an exemption for actors on a live production set. Which means thanks to a live streaming website and a web camera, the North Carolina hookah bar is now a stage, and all the patrons, players.[/quote]

This is for North Carolina, though, I'll need to keep searching for Texas. Reading law is not a strength of mine either... Edited by TheAnesthetist

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[quote name='TheAnesthetist' timestamp='1320669197' post='530548']
Well, the mayors brother has one of the only places I can think of you can smoke anything - which is cigars. And it's only on the roof, not in the restaurant below.
Everywhere else is no smoking indoors. Period.

I don't even live there, just know the area very well and have friends there. It may just be a curiosity, but I want to know for future reference anyhow, if there is a work around to the smoking indoors issue.[color=#ff0000] Surely there is someone out there who has experienced this?[/color] I thought even some clubs in Houston banned smoking indoors now.
[/quote]

again, how the law is worded EXACTLY is necessary to find a loophole. Go to your legislative site and find the law.

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[quote name='mushrat' timestamp='1320686545' post='530584']
[quote name='TheAnesthetist' timestamp='1320669197' post='530548']
Well, the mayors brother has one of the only places I can think of you can smoke anything - which is cigars. And it's only on the roof, not in the restaurant below.
Everywhere else is no smoking indoors. Period.

I don't even live there, just know the area very well and have friends there. It may just be a curiosity, but I want to know for future reference anyhow, if there is a work around to the smoking indoors issue.[color=#ff0000] Surely there is someone out there who has experienced this?[/color] I thought even some clubs in Houston banned smoking indoors now.
[/quote]

again, how the law is worded EXACTLY is necessary to find a loophole. Go to your legislative site and find the law.
[/quote]
And even then its a long shot.

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In most cases local law can be stricter than national or state law. I would find the exact law and find a lawyer to interpret it for you/find a loophole. If you already own a business then you probably have a lawyer.

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Yeah 2012 sorry was a long day working on the business plan as we speak and it will be located new york Washington heights

[quote name='mushrat' timestamp='1320410619' post='530244']
I trust you mean 2012? :)

Where will you be located? This will help me recommend the best suppliers.
Also, do you have a business plan? an ein? an actual business entity? that sort of thing? :)
[/quote]

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haven't file for the legal paper work yet think of doing so this month. I do have experience in business I've been managing business since the age of 16 I'm now 26 I'm pretty business savvy.

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You do not NEED an actual location to sell tobacco products. When you get the tobacco retailers permit one of the questions you are asked is if you will be vending out of your vehicle, and with that you simply tie the permit to a vehicle used to store and transport your tobacco products. Is way if you cater to an event you will usually have rates and this rate is the amount of tobacco being purchased by your customers. I've got a business exactly like this and it's taking off phenominally any questions? Alexarm555@yahoo.com

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Texas laws are apparently different from NC laws.

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Please beat me up mercilessly if this has been brought up before.

I am helping a friend who has a great Indian restaurant to do a hookah service. I asked for and got the go ahead that we will differentiate ourselves from the other guys in Prague by offering the exceptional hookah experience using the finest water pipes and the best tobacco, with natural coals. On top of this, we will have two hose waterpipes, possibly also coolgel (is it any good?), whatever works best. Best tobacco too, Al-Fakher or better if I can get it.

Not much money in this but having been on both sides of the coin, if you do what you love and are with the people you love, for me I can live in a tiny apartment if my work makes others happy. The rest is BS, my personal experience.

Thanks in advance for advice on this-practical considerations is that I am based in the Czech Republic in the EU and shipping/taxes need to be factored in. Maybe my boss will send me to Istanbul or Aleppo for materials :)

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Hello Hookah Forum :D this is my first post and I appologize but I need to hit the ground running. I'm trying to setup a hookah lounge at an outdoor festival that is happening locally (FL) in a few weeks and I am having a hell of a time trying to find a company that is willing to give me a general liability policy. The festival producers have approved the hookah lounge, or hookah tent to be more precise but they require a 1 million $ general liability policy for [i]ALL[/i] of their vendors.

Most of the major carriers have already turned me down, I'm hoping that someone with experience can recommned a smaller company that has delt with insuring tobacco vendors. I have googled and found some cheepo craft vendor insurance companies but those will not do.

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[quote name='keyvisuals' timestamp='1328026829' post='537215']
Hello Hookah Forum :D this is my first post and I appologize but I need to hit the ground running. I'm trying to setup a hookah lounge at an outdoor festival that is happening locally (FL) in a few weeks and I am having a hell of a time trying to find a company that is willing to give me a general liability policy. The festival producers have approved the hookah lounge, or hookah tent to be more precise but they require a 1 million $ general liability policy for [i]ALL[/i] of their vendors.

Most of the major carriers have already turned me down, I'm hoping that someone with experience can recommned a smaller company that has delt with insuring tobacco vendors. I have googled and found some cheepo craft vendor insurance companies but those will not do.
[/quote]

I don't think there is a cookie-cutter solution for this. Let's say you were a traveling hookah booth that went around to various festivals year round I'm sure you could find an insurance provider. But given that, at least as you lead me to believe, this is more or less a one time thing as of now I think you're going to have a hard time procuring insurance coverage.

Sorry I couldn't be more help. Try Googling "Vendor Insurance" to find some legitimate companies with a wide range of categories serviced and give them some calls to see if they can help you out with your endeavor.

Good luck!

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[quote]
this is more or less a one time thing as of now I think you're going to have a hard time procuring insurance coverage.
Sorry I couldn't be more help. Try Googling "Vendor Insurance" to find some legitimate companies with a wide range of categories serviced and give them some calls to see if they can help you out with your endeavor.
[/quote]

Well, if it turns out to be profitable then it won't be a one time thing but yes, getting the insurance is proving to be the most difficult part.

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