Photo credits: (left corner, going clockwise) Associated Press, Kyodo News / Getty Images, Café & Konditorei Rothe, Reuters
Just like closing their doors, re-opening is not an easy feat for any bar or restaurant these days. While we are all resurfacing from a very long shelter-in-place, not much is known about what we can expect to happen once life returns to something close to "normal."
Some people feel more comfortable than others going out again, and that's OK. Some establishments are waiting to re-open their doors again, and that's OK. Some establishments simply may not re-open. We may never know the circumstances that lead people to these decisions, and therefore, we must acknowledge that everyone is doing the best they can.
As we all start to head back out to our favorite establishments, this is a gentle reminder that everyone is doing the best they can. Going to restaurants certainly is going to look different than before - and it's not because we want it to. So if your next outing requires a face mask to be worn, know it is up to you as to whether or not you wish to comply. By not complying, you may need to go elsewhere. Remember that the hospitality industry is one based off of taking care of one another, and their guest guidelines and protocols stem from that very objective. If you do not agree, that's OK! But please be respectful of the establishment's wishes and find another establishment to visit that feels comfortable for you.
What we can say, is that there are a few requirements that you should be prepared for, as they have been required by our state's Health Department:
Employees must: - Wear face masks - Undergo daily temperature checks and disclose any illness or symptoms to their supervisors - Follow strict sanitation protocols
Establishments must: - Decrease occupancy (changing weekly, but started at 50%) - Space all tables at least 6 feet apart. - No parties larger than 6 people - Have social distancing set up in waiting areas (6 foot areas displayed) - Bar areas are to remain closed to avoid congestion and over-crowding - No live music for the time being - Screen customers with questions or temperature checks - Sanitize high traffic areas / frequently touched areas every two hours - Sanitize chairs and tables after each use - Remove self serve stations and shared condiments
If you'd like to see how other establishments are reacting, here are a few of our very unique favorites:
A Maryland restaurant offers bumper tables to promote social distancing (and it looks pretty darn fun!)
Keeping with the water vibes, a German restaurant requires all guests to don pool noodle hats to keep up their social distancing measures!
The Inn at Little Washington in Virginia has packed its restaurant with mannequins to get that 'full house' vibe.
Mannequins too creepy for you? How about Australia's take on cardboard cut-outs then?
Still too much? Then Thailand's stuff panda seating ought to do it!
A restaurant in Amsterdam has diners enjoy their food while in private greenhouses.
Another restaurant in Sweden only serves one person per day!