Shipping Container Restaurants

Shipping Container Restaurants
September 21, 2017 Sunel
Freedom cafe

Over the past decade, the mobile food industry has flourished, with gourmet food trucks and pop-up restaurants earning large followings of enthusiastic customers in cities worldwide.

In keeping with this trend, increasing numbers of enterprising business owners are housing restaurants in remodelled shipping containers. The shipping containers serve as cost-effective premises that are easy to modify and transport. They’re secure and weather-resistant, and they provide novelty value.



© photo via Muvboxrestos

Montréal’s MuvBox is a futuristic, solar-powered shipping-container restaurant, with a wall that unfolds in seconds to create an open-air seating area.

Les Grandes Tables

Grandes tables

© photo via Mapoles Architecture

Located in Paris, this innovative restaurant is constructed from re-used shipping containers, housed within a glass frame. The building encompasses a 300 square metre dining area that seats 120 guests, and includes a greenhouse and a garden, which provide the restaurant with fresh produce.

Freedom Café

Freedom cafe

©photo via Glenvz1

This funky local eatery is situated in Durban. It’s housed in a bright red shipping container, with large windows and a shaded outside area with an attractive deck.


This London-based pop-up restaurant, which was launched in 2013 on the River Thames, consists of eight recycled shipping containers. The award-winning restaurant has two levels, as well as an outdoor dining area.

Foghound Coffee Shop

foghound cafe shop

This coffee shop and showroom, located outside Johannesburg, is operated by the Foghound Interactive Coffee Company. The bright blue, 294 square metre building is two storeys high, with the bottom floor opening onto an outdoor seating area.

Potential business benefits of container restaurants

For enterprising restaurateurs, pop-ups and food trucks have several advantages over restaurants with fixed premises:

  • they keep things novel for customers and so drive up sales
  • they can be moved to take advantage of peak demand at different places and times
  • they’re cost-effective, with no long-term leases and typically fairly low running costs
  • they allow chefs to experiment, testing the success of different innovative dishes
  • they’re low risk – they can be closed and packed up as quickly as they were started
  • successful pop-ups and popular food trucks have the potential to grow into permanent fixtures, and food truck owners can easily expand their businesses to include more trucks.

At Big Box Containers, we specialise in renting and hiring high-quality shipping containers, including containers converted for a range of uses – from restaurants to offices. Contact us for a quotation or to find out more.

Contact BigBox today for a free quote!