Is the best seat in a restaurant at the bar, overlooking the kitchen, or secluded on the patio? The bigger question, however, is how does one score said seat? A new feature on OpenTable, debuting today in Chicago, allows diners to specify and reserve their personal seat preference.
The "Table Categories" feature goes live today at Cherry Circle Room, De Quay, Bistro Bordeaux, and dozens of other Chicagoland restaurants. It allows restaurants to categorize their tables as either bar, high top, counter, or communal seats. Guests using OpenTable's iOS app will then be able to choose between these and "standard" seating options when making a reservation. In an official release, Eli Chait, Director of Product at OpenTable, explains that these "non-standard" seating options are typically not available though OpenTable, and the new feature helps provide additional reservations. The feature will roll out nationally once the kinks are worked out in Chicago.
"We wanted a way to better serve diners who at peak dining times were struggling to find reservations," says Terry McNeese, general manager at De Quay, according to the release. "The new feature allowed us to open up additional inventory, seat more guests, and deliver a better experience to diners."