Adding a Home Wet Bar

By HomeAdvisor

Updated November 30, 2016

Wet bar

While a liquor cabinet provides better storage than throwing your liquor bottles under the sink, a home wet bar will give your setting the full culture of entertainment with ease. When you’re entertaining guests, you don’t want to spend all night fixing drinks. You can go from one cabinet to find a drinking glass to your freezer for ice to your liquor cabinet back to your refrigerator for a lime and then to your pantry for olives—just to make two drinks. A home wet bar can allow you to stand in one place, fetch all these items, and still be able to follow conversation.

The What and Where of Your Wet Bar

The most popular type of wet bar is a straight or L-shaped bar in a finished basement. In fact, most people think of a home wet bar as being in the basement. This is only because for homes with finished basements, most of the entertaining occurs down there. You should build your wet bar wherever you most frequently entertain. If you have the space, you may even be able to put in a small home wet bar in your rec room. Wherever your pool table or poker table is, so should your wet bar be.

Don’t feel constrained by typical bar counter design. This is your home, not the local pub. A more circular or elliptical shaped bar may be the best fit for your area and decor. The vast majority of wet bars are made from wood or stainless steel. Like most furniture options, go with the wood for a more traditional feel or stainless steel for a more modern undertone.


You may think a home wet bar is just a long counter to store liquor and make drinks, but there’s a little more to it than just that. Consider your needs and lifestyle. If you like to entertain diverse social groups, your most pressing need may be adequate storage for different wines, liquors, and beer. A bar back will give you this kind of storage. If you most often entertain a more intimate group of friends, placing drinks under the bar will allow you to face the room while you’re making the drinks. Speaking of storage, for people whose friends are big beer drinkers, you should probably think about replacing cabinet space for a kegerator. For wine connoisseurs, a wine fridge that will keep your wines at an optimal temperature may be a necessity.

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First and foremost, you’ll want places to sit. While you’ll have tons of options for the bar itself, barstools are even more numerous in design elements. As cool as the typical barstool may look, remember again this is your home, not the local pub. Chairs with backs and armrests may be more comfortable than flimsy barstools. You can choose a high, thin chair that will look appropriate next to your bar and still be able to provide your guests with comfort they’ll appreciate. Plus, a sturdier chair will minimize embarrassing falls for anyone who overdoes it a little.

Once you have your home wet bar installed, don’t forget the smaller accessories that will allow it to work efficiently. Besides a full compliment of cocktail glasses, beer mugs, and shot glasses, shakers, ice buckets, ice crushers, coasters, corkscrews, bottle openers are all a must. Also think about getting a shot steward rotary for extra convenience. For that final touch, think about classy wall hangings to create the proper bar decor.

*** A wet bar is so named not for the alcoholic drinks but because it has a sink with running water.***

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