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Q&A for Restaurant Tables
How to Buy Restaurant Tables
  Here is a brief review on how to buy restaurant tables:
  • Durability and customization - Custom Wilsonart laminate restaurant table tops. Wilsonart laminates provides a water proof, heat proof and high durable surface. It is available in over 100 different styles (wood, granite etc.) and textures (smooth or textured). Commonly used in most fast food chains, as well as designer restaurants.
  • Classiness - Solid wood restaurant table tops. However, care must be take in using a fine china to protect the surface from scratching, as well as not allowing water to sit too long on the surface. Touch up can be done easily using wood polish and a similar polyurethane coating. Failure to follow these instructions can lead to warping and cracking.
    • As an more economical alternative, try the wood veneer restaurant table tops. These tables are produced from a MDF board with layer of real wood veneer on top. Edges are constructed from a solid wood piece for stability. You get the feel and look of real wood, at a fraction of the price. They also do not warp or crack. For maintenance, polish surfaces every few months and do not allow water to sit. Take extra precaution not to bump the tables into anything as the wood veneer layer, once chipped, will be difficult to touch up.
  • Economic & Beautiful - Resin restaurant table tops we carry come in a number of different colors and combinations. They are popular because they are at entry level pricing. Resin tables are constructed from a MDF board with a layer of hard resin on the surface. They are then sealed on the bottom to prevent moisture from seeping in from the bottom, thereby cracking the resin surface. Take care to use fine china, water on the surface is not a problem for these tables. However, if chipped, these resin surface will be difficult to touch up. 
  • Cheap & Cheap - Reversible restaurant tables are the cheapest type of table you can purchase. They come with laminate colors on the top and bottom side. The interior is constructed from flake board, which tend to trap moisture, which may eventually lead to surface laminates bubbling up. With that said, its easily replaced.
 Table Tops
Price Aesthetics Durability Usage Touch Ups
Reversible 1 1 1 Gas Stations Marker
Resin 3 4 3 Casual Dining N/A
Wood Veneer 3 5 4 Casual Dining Wood stain
Solid Oak 4 5 4 Steakhouses Wood stain
T-mold 2 2 5 Fast foods, Deli's Marker
Wood Edge 4 4 5 Bakery, Pizza Marker
Self Edge 4 5 4 Designer, Bistro Marker
Werzalit / Molded Melamine 3 5 5 Designer, Bistro N/A
Granite 5 5 5 Designer, Sushi N/A

The Most Durable Restaurant Table - Laminate Table

If you don’t want to worry about water rings, scratches, hot plates and chemicals – laminate table tops are the way to go. I recommend this as the number one option for all restaurants and hotels. In my experience, laminate restaurant tables offer the most customization options. Formica and Wilsonart are the two largest manufactures of laminates; each company offers hundreds of different style laminates. With patterns replicating wood grain, stone, marble, or abstract designs, laminates opens the door to endless design opportunities.

The majority of large chain restaurant chains use laminate tables, as they have been for the longest time. Not only are they cheaper than solid wood, but they are more durable. The reason is because solid wood tables are only as good as the top coat. Without getting too detailed into the process, all top coats will eventually wear out. And in most cases they do wear out before laminates.

If I were to quantify laminates, I would say that it’s 50% more durable than solid wood and double or triple the durability of cheap imported resin tables and imported restaurant laminate tables.

To those who do not like the look of laminate tables, I say that perhaps you do not know of all the different edge options. For fine dining, you can use either a self-edge, which uses the same laminate on the edge as the top, or you can use a solid wood edge. Self-edge tables, done right, can make the laminate table look like solid wood or solid stone.

American Hospitality Furniture is a manufacturer of custom restaurant furniture. The company proudly markets many of its products are either Made in USA or Assembled in USA.