DOCUMENTAtioN for setting up a bar in MADRID - QualityFry
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DOCUMENTAtioN for setting up a bar in MADRID

What documents are needed for setting up a bar in MadridDo you need a licence? How are sales carried out in this type of business? Which factors are the most difficult to resolve? The doubts that lie in wait for new restauranteurs when it comes to setting up a business. At QUALITYFRY we want to help you find the most sustainable long-term solution. For that reason, in this post you will be able to find the necessary documentation for setting up a bar in Madrid.

Spain is the country with the most bars per inhabitant in the European Union. This business represents 15% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), double that of the European media. Catering should be a form of employment and self-employment with certain viability in its procedures. But, in order to be considered a Certified Activity (in other words, with environmental impact, fumes, odours, noises, etc.) it is subject to national, regional, and local regulations. Depending on the Autonomous Community or the City Council where the premises in question can be found, the paperwork will be more or less salvable.


Bars of Qualified Activity are reviewed with great care by the local administration’s Urban Planning Departments, although really less than what we imagine. According to the information** provided by the Madrid City Council, the inspections of the premises have been carried out 232 working days after the submission of the AFFIDAVIT. This document shows the procedure with which it is possible to set up a bar in Madrid, which can come a year after the opening of the premises, if counting weekends and holidays when the technicians of the administration do not work.


The documentation for setting up a catering business in Madrid is a little unique with regards to other locations. In the majority of the country’s City Councils the documentation for opening a hospitality business has to pass through the application for an ACTIVITY LICENCE (and/or BUILDING PERMISSION in the case of carrying out an amendment to the establishment). In the capital, since the Community of Madrid modified the 17/1997 law, of Espectáculos Públicos y Actividades Recreativas (LEPAR) (Public Entertainment and Recreational Activity), in particular the ninth additional provision (added to the 47/2013 law), the implementation of certain types of business is made more viable by means of presentation of an AFFIDAVIT. This procedure has pros and cons, on occasion it generates demands and conflicts with the neighbouring community and other similar businesses.


The AFFITDAVIT is a document signed by the licensee of the business in which they state that they comply with the urban and sectoral requirements demanded by the current regulations. This document allows a bar to be set up during the months or years that the ACTIVITY LICENCE application lasts. Thus, there remains a legal loophole which allows businesses to be opened that may not obtain the licence, or that will fail to comply with the regulations.


The AFFITDAVIT must be presented, as with the ACTIVITY LICENCE application, with the following documentation:

  • Construction and Activity Project in which it is certified that the premises comply with the requirements for carrying out this type of activity in agreement with the current regulations, signed by a competent technician and endorsed, if appropriate, by the professional association.
  • The technical project will collect different reports which will vary according to the characteristics and square metres of the business (urban reports, accessibility, sound-proofing, health and safety measures, Environmental Impact Statement, fire prevention plan)
  • It must include the Civil Liability Insurance
  • If construction is carried out on the premises a Final Certificate of constructions and installations carried out in agreement with the licence must be presented, signed by a competent technician and endorsed by the official association.
  • Payment of fees established by the City Council.

The Environmental Impact Statement in a Certified Activity such as hospitality is one of the most important aspects in avoiding a future request from the administration or complaints from the neighbouring community. A deficient smoke vent is usually one of the reasons that leads to the closing of a business. In this respect, it is useful to remember that the ecofry technology, developed by QUALITYFRY in products such as FAST CHEF ELITE , has managed to totally eliminate the emission of fumes and vapours, and has reduced odours by up to 94%. The application of this technology, which has a low ecological footprint, has been awarded the European Commission Seal of Excellence and selected as a finalist in the 2016 HOSTELCO AWARDS.

Another aspect to bear in mind so that the opening of the bar is sustainable in the long run and does not lead to complaints and later demands, is an investment in soundproofing. In addition to the correct waste management and the appropriate use of terraces or guards, which may not be set up without an advance LICENCE, since the Affidavit is not viable for these spaces.


If you are only going to put your business on a premises where something similar already exists it is possible to apply for a modification to the CHANGE IN OWNERSHIP OF THE ACTIVITY LICENCE. What is typically called “transfer” of premises is a relatively simple operation which is carried out by means of communication with the City Council about the change in ownership of a previously granted licence for the same activity.

Before agreeing to a transfer, it is fundamental to check the conditions in the Registry of the City Council in which the current licence for the premises is found and to check if it has had any unresolved complaints.

The penalties for a faulty smoke vent solution are common ones that you can resolve by introducing catering machinery such as that developed by us at QUALITYFRY, adapted to the environmental requirements of the current regulations.

We recommend, furthermore, checking the name of the activity and the date of granting of the licence.

Setting up a bar in Madrid is usually more attainable than in other autonomous communities, but it is essential to do it in a sustainable and long-term way. Avoid closure by bearing in mind such factors as fumes, odours, noises, waste management, and health and safety, which can further affect the stability of your business.

**Observatorio. Ayuntamiento de Madrid