How Much Does it Cost to Build a Commercial Bar in 2022?

What is a wet bar in a house?

A wet bar is simply a bar or counter that has a si

A wet bar is simply a bar or counter that has a sink and running water that is used for serving alcoholic beverages at home.  This instant party machine rose in popularity during the 1960s and 1970s

It has faded in and out of popularity over the decades but is a desirable attribute for anyone who loves to entertain.  Wet bars are most often located in the basement of a home, but can be found in other areas.

The sink means that more drinks can make it to the party. Glasses can be rinsed or washed right there without needing to walk across the house or upstairs.

Spills can also be cleaned up and ice can be dumped in the sink.  Access to plumbing opens many doors to successful parties.

More benefits a wet bar brings to you and your home

In addition to a place to have a party and entertain, wet bars also have the added benefit of saving space in the kitchen.  Get all of your alcohol and drink glasses out of the kitchen and keep them in the wet bar.

Guests will appreciate having a dedicated space for hanging out without feeling like they are poking around your kitchen.  A wet bar can truly be the life of the party.

Also, think about how much money you will save by not ordering drinks at your local bar.  The cost of installing a wet bar could be recouped quickly if visiting a bar is a common occurrence in your life.

Plus, a wet bar can be open 24 hours a day and the drinks will be mixed just how you like them.

What’s the difference between a wet bar and a dry bar?

The difference between a wet bar and a dry bar is

The difference between a wet bar and a dry bar is simple, a wet bar has a sink and a dry bar does not.  The mixing of drinks happens at both wet bars and dry bars.

Alcohol, mixers, and glasses can also be stored in the cabinets.  The real question is if you want to include plumbing when considering a wet bar vs. a dry bar.

Adding plumbing significantly increases the cost of the project, but can also add a huge amount of convenience.

Wet bar vs. kitchenette

Typically, a wet bar is used solely for drink prep

Typically, a wet bar is used solely for drink preparation and a kitchenette allows for both the preparation of drinks and food.  Both of these will include a sink and running water.

In addition to a sink, a kitchenette typically includes a small or regular-sized refrigerator as well as at least one method of cooking food.  This could just be a microwave, toaster oven, or a small stove or oven.

Some homeowners prefer a kitchenette in their basement to have access to snacks in an entertainment space, while others install a kitchenette in a mother-in-law-type space.

Either can be a great option for a family, extra living space, or for entertaining.



Back to the budget, our investment has now climbed to $16,475, or $890 per lineal foot, for a single bartender station. However, we still need an ice machine, and what about other big-ticket items? Ice machines are more of a necessity, but don’t worry, because there’s Easy Ice, a great service for bar owners that enables them to save their precious operating capital, which I covered in a previous post, referenced below. Glass washing equipment is optional equipment for most single-station bars. Glass washers become a necessity in multiple bartender stations. Draft beer systems offer many options. Adding a draft beer system can add at least $5,000 – $15,000, which could potentially double the investment used in this example (see post below).


Having trouble with your bar design? Most people are afraid of making a costly mistake. Set your fears aside and talk directly with an industry-leading bar design expert! For as little as $99 you might avoid a very costly mistake. With thousands of hours of professional bar design experience, Rick Uzubell can help you solve the most common bar design issues:

  • How many bars do I need?
  • What are the bar layout dimensions?
  • How much space do I need for an ADA accommodation?
  • Do I need a glycol draft beer system or a kegerator?
  • What’s the best bar shape?

Solving bar design problems and answering questions is all I do. In all my years of experience there isn’t much I haven’t done or seen. For a nominal investment I can help you with many of your most pressing bar design issues. For only $99 you can talk with me for 15 minutes. My one-hour package includes a Zoom conference call.

Don’t make a costly mistake! Schedule an appointment today! But don’t delay… I only consult part time because I’m busy designing bars.

Go to my scheduling module (below) and book your appointment immediately! Hurry, space is limited!

About Us

Hi, friends! I'm James (site owner/article researc

Hi, friends! I’m James (site owner/article researcher) & this is Anita (content manager & writer). Together we research & write helpful articles for common questions many people search for answers to.

Thanks for visiting. Feel free to browse our great articles from the home page or menu above.