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Old 26.08.2014, 23:02
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Run a Café

My friend and I want to run our own business, and the biz is a Café. Honestly, we are not experienced, but like to serve our Café/Tee, home-made food and cake, etc, and hope our customers could find it a quiet and nice place to read, study, work and chat with friends...
I want to know if we will have to get a specific PAPER for running a Café in Zurich besides all standardized legal documents?
I do appreciate of your comments!
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Old 27.08.2014, 00:54
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Re: Run a Café

I know there is a qualification you must have is selling food... Don't know what it's called.
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Old 27.08.2014, 05:22
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Re: Run a Café

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I know there is a qualification you must have is selling food... Don't know what it's called.
I don't have any food related qualification at all and I sell food.

OP, first off, find a commercial property that allows for "Gastro" activity (not every shop premises is allowed".

Form a company (loads of threads on EF about how to do this)

Raise enough money to start (which will probably include buying out an existing business) - I would guess anywhere from 100,000 to 200,000 should be enough for a small cafe.

Get inspected for your food handling license and alcohol license (if you're going to sell booze)

Start marketing and be prepared to work very long hours for little return in the first few years.

Good luck, working with food is a lot of fun.
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Old 27.08.2014, 15:14
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Re: Run a Café

Grumpy gave you some good advice. Here are a few threads to get you started.

Starting a business in Switzerland.

Einzelfirma & Gmbh details in Zurich? [starting a business]

http://www.englishforum.ch/business-...ompany-ch.html

Starting a business with Permit B

There are other threads too...the search box is in the upper right corner of your screen, and the easiest way to get results is to enter a few words instead of a whole phrase. For example, "starting a business" yielded far more results than "opening a cafe." Good luck!
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Old 27.08.2014, 15:53
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Re: Run a Café

I would so advise you if you could to spend sometime working in a coffee shop for the experience to see if you still like it. Also to give you an insight into the many areas you will need to know.

Making a few cakes and tea for your friends is worlds away from serving customers all day in what can be a busy, hot and sometimes stressful environment.

Wish you well with your new career which can be highly rewarding but I will never forget the hard work needed when made the step to own my first restaurant.
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Old 27.08.2014, 16:49
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Re: Run a Café

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I don't have any food related qualification at all and I sell food.

Get inspected for your food handling license and alcohol license (if you're going to sell booze).
You don't make the food though, right? I think if they want to run a cafe it's one thing. If they want to make "home made" food to serve, it's quite another.

I can only give advice in Vaud and that is to read up on GastroVaud site. They must have an equivalent in Zurich.
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Old 27.08.2014, 22:45
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Re: Run a Café

Thank you so much to you all for your replies, time and suggestions.
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Old 27.08.2014, 23:22
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Re: Run a Café

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My friend and I want to run our own business, and the biz is a Café. Honestly, we are not experienced, but like to serve our Café/Tee, home-made food and cake, etc, and hope our customers could find it a quiet and nice place to read, study, work and chat with friends...
I want to know if we will have to get a specific PAPER for running a Café in Zurich besides all standardized legal documents?
I do appreciate of your comments!
Siblings of my wife run restaurants/bars in Copenhagen and Singapore.

Be careful of the .."a quiet and nice place to read, study, work and chat
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Old 28.08.2014, 00:54
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Re: Run a Café

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Siblings of my wife run restaurants/bars in Copenhagen and Singapore.

Be careful of the .."a quiet and nice place to read, study, work and chat
How so? I lived in Singapore for a while, and teenagers there like to hog tables all days to "study" at fast food joins like mc donalds or burger king.
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Old 28.08.2014, 08:16
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Re: Run a Café

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How so? I lived in Singapore for a while, and teenagers there like to hog tables all days to "study" at fast food joins like mc donalds or burger king.

Yes, and whilst they are "hogging the table" it is difficult to sell anything else to anybody else...... Students are not known for there excessive consumption of cakes and coffee, beer maybe !
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Old 28.08.2014, 08:53
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Re: Run a Café

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Be careful of the .."a quiet and nice place to read, study, work and chat


Exactly, it wont pay the rent, let alone yourself any wages. (You need to calculate how many coffees and slices of cake you would have to sell every day at 4.50 each to turn a profit). If you have a good location then it could work.


Unless of course you have just sold your shares for a social media platform and are just looking for a quiet way to spend your days and to give you and your friends somewhere to hang out.
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Old 28.08.2014, 08:58
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Re: Run a Café

Seriously though, why don't you try and set up a coffee/cake stall at one of the local markets once a week and see how your cakes go down. I know things like that are easier in other countries, what with all the Swiss regulations, but worth a look into.


I was thinking of doing some sort of Street Food thing once a week, but never got beyond the thinking about it stage.
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Old 28.08.2014, 19:47
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Re: Run a Café

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Siblings of my wife run restaurants/bars in Copenhagen and Singapore.

Be careful of the .."a quiet and nice place to read, study, work and chat
Would you please tell me what that means if something beyond what Today only said above and if you don't mind. Thank you.
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Old 28.08.2014, 22:54
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Re: Run a Café

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Would you please tell me what that means if something beyond what Today only said above and if you don't mind. Thank you.
If you make a "nice cosy cafe" where people can just sit and work and hang out, they will not buy anything. The tables will be full of people just sitting there. Not spending any money.

There has to be a balance between not cosy and too cosy.
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Old 29.08.2014, 04:31
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Re: Run a Café

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There has to be a balance between not cosy and too cosy.
Thank you to you all for Brainstorming. Also...

Thank you to miniMia and babaloo550. There is a lot of things I need to learn and experience. Quite a few years ago I worked partime in restaurants when i was studying at school, but am not experienced in managing a biz. Time past by, my way of thinking and understanding are changed for getting older. Working in a Café sometime is going to help me minimize the risks in general.

Thank you to grumpygrapefruit. Yes, working with food is a lot of fun.

Thank you to TobiasM. Wish you could run your biz soon.
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Old 29.08.2014, 05:47
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Re: Run a Café

Hehehe..

Moved my laptop whilst typing that sentence.... and what do you know ... it was suddenly posted... unfinished.

As some of the other posters have said to be successful it must be approached as a business and not a hobby.

Early starts, late finishes, long hours, grumpy staff and customers , food regulations and inspections.

Still, with hard work and dedication it will surely flourish.

Best wishes on the venture, and if you decide to go ahead, please post details and I for one will attend the grand opening.
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Old 29.08.2014, 07:01
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Re: Run a Café

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Thank you to you all for Brainstorming. Also...

Thank you to miniMia and babaloo550. There is a lot of things I need to learn and experience. Quite a few years ago I worked partime in restaurants when i was studying at school, but am not experienced in managing a biz. Time past by, my way of thinking and understanding are changed for getting older. Working in a Café sometime is going to help me minimize the risks in general.

Thank you to grumpygrapefruit. Yes, working with food is a lot of fun.

Thank you to TobiasM. Wish you could run your biz soon.
Due to you being more open minded I give you a slightly better chance then some of success. I have always been amazed by how many people get to a stage in their lives an think " I have some money, I know I'll open a bar / restaurant".

When I opened a restaurant even with a good few years of diverse experience nothing could prepare me for the many areas that I came up against. And as for make money well the first few years is a tsunami of bills.

The adrenalin rush is incredible, food and drink is the essense of life their are times you will have that will stay with you for ever and oh the feeling of a successful service....magic.

So pls don't let me put you off
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Old 29.08.2014, 07:03
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Re: Run a Café

Sorry and remember me if you need help or advice happy to help.

I have not long been here but I am not doing much so happy to help anyway I can.

Although I wont be much you with local things others will be better some pricniples very much stay the same.
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Old 29.08.2014, 07:09
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Re: Run a Café

There is a street food festival in Zürich, you could try your cakes there - http://www.montagsmarkt.ch/street-food-festival/
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Old 29.08.2014, 09:10
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Re: Run a Café

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There is a street food festival in Zürich, you could try your cakes there - http://www.montagsmarkt.ch/street-food-festival/
Finally, I was wondering when Switzerland was going to catch up with the rest of the world.
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