Unlock the Flavors of Success: Your Ultimate Guide to Launching a Restaurant in Dubai’s Culinary Paradise! 

Restaurant License in Dubai

Restaurant License in Dubai



The bustling city of Dubai, renowned for its diverse culinary offerings, presents a lucrative opportunity for aspiring restaurateurs. Business setup in Dubai mainland, which includes obtaining a restaurant business license, is a key step for entering this vibrant market. This article provides a detailed overview of acquiring a restaurant license in Dubai, highlighting the associated costs, procedural steps, required documentation, industry size, business prospects, and includes inspiring success stories and FAQs.

Licensing Journey: Setting Up Your Culinary Venture

  • Essential Steps for Acquiring a Restaurant License in Dubai
  • Developing a Business Plan: Outline your unique restaurant concept, target market, and financial outlook.
  • Choosing a Prime Location: Identify a suitable location in Dubai Mainland that caters to your intended audience.
  • Business Name Registration: Register your restaurant’s trade name with the Dubai Department of Economic Development (DED).
  • Securing Initial Approval and Documentation: Gain initial approval from the DED and compile the necessary documents for final application.

Necessary Documents for Acquiring the License

  1. Copies of shareholders’ passports
  2. No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the sponsor (if applicable)
  3. Trade name registration proof
  4. Initial approval certificate from DED
  5. Ejari-certified tenancy agreement for the restaurant’s premises
  6. Food and health safety certifications
  7. Investment Insights: Budgeting for Your Restaurant

Starting a restaurant in Dubai Mainland involves varying costs, typically ranging between AED 20,000 and AED 40,000. This estimation accounts for government fees, trade name registration, and initial approvals, but can vary based on the restaurant’s scale and chosen locale.

The Booming Restaurant Industry in Dubai

The Scope and Scale of the Industry

Dubai’s restaurant sector plays a pivotal role in its economy, with its worth running into billions of Dirhams. The city’s global appeal and diverse population create an expansive market for innovative dining concepts.

Prospects for Restaurant Entrepreneurs

Dubai’s restaurant market offers a spectrum of opportunities, from high-end dining experiences to casual cafes. The city’s evolving food scene and its embrace of culinary diversity spell promising prospects for new entrants.

This thriving market makes business setup in Dubai mainland, particularly for restaurants, an attractive proposition. Reports indicate the number of restaurants and cafes in Dubai is around 13,000, as mentioned in a snippet from Caterer Middle East.

Triumphs in the Culinary World

Flavors of Arabia: Beginning as a modest eatery, it has blossomed into a go-to destination for authentic Arabian cuisine, merging traditional recipes with a modern twist.

Urban Fusion Bistro: This restaurant started with a focus on fusion cuisine and quickly became a culinary trendsetter in Dubai, known for its innovative dishes and stylish ambiance.


  1. What sets a restaurant business license apart in Dubai?

Answer: A restaurant license in Dubai Mainland is specifically designed for food service establishments and requires compliance with unique health and safety standards.

  1. What is the timeframe for obtaining a restaurant license in Dubai?

Answer: The process can vary, but typically, obtaining a restaurant license in Dubai can take from a few weeks to several months, depending on document preparation and regulatory adherence.

  1. Can foreign nationals acquire a restaurant license in Dubai?

Answer: Yes, foreign nationals can obtain this license with 100% ownership, often requiring a local service agent who represents the company with Economic Department but doesn’t own shares in the company or LLC company without LSA.

  1. Are there specific kitchen regulations for Dubai restaurants?

Answer: Dubai restaurants must adhere to stringent food safety and kitchen hygiene regulations enforced by the Dubai Municipality, including equipment standards and staff training requirements.

  1. What are the ongoing obligations for a licensed restaurant in Dubai?

Answer: Restaurants must consistently comply with health inspections, renew their licenses annually, maintain updated food safety certifications, and stay aligned with local business and food service laws.

In summary, acquiring a restaurant business license in Dubai Mainland involves a structured process, careful financial planning, and adherence to local regulations. With a comprehensive understanding and a strategic approach, entrepreneurs can successfully establish and grow their restaurant ventures in Dubai’s flourishing culinary landscape.

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    It is crucial to comprehend the distinction between obtaining a license with a visa quota and acquiring residency in the UAE. A license with a visa quota solely covers the expenses related to a business license and visa quota, with the possibility of including a Flexi office lease in certain Freezones. However, possessing a visa quota does not automatically grant you UAE residency; additional steps must be completed. If you wish to apply for a partner/investor visa, there are supplementary costs involved. These include obtaining an immigration card, registering for E-channel (NE Only), and paying fees for visa, visa processing, medical examination and Emirates ID typing. To effectively plan your business expenses, it is imperative to ask the right questions from the beginning to avoid surprises and hidden costs.