For the first time in more than three months, restaurants in San Francisco are allowed to let people stay and eat, but patrons have to do so outside.
Restaurant managers have been putting in long hours all week to rearrange their restaurants in order to abide by the seat spacing rules and other health related requirements put in place due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
The manager at Blackwood restaurant said she and her team have been spending their week cleaning, sanitizing and getting masks so they would be ready to reopen their patio space to customers looking to dine in.
“Last night, we prepared everything, so we set up four tables, have 6 feet distance for each table,” Sukanya Limmahasel said.
The restaurant requested that the city give them some extra seating space. The request was approved quickly, as long as the restaurant could meet safety protocols.
“We just got the news on Tuesday that we could open on Friday, so we had to kind of scramble a little bit,” Pete Sittnick said.
At Waterbar on the Embarcadero, staff have removed half of the restaurant’s patio tables and they have masks ready for customers. The restaurant isn’t ready for full outdoor service, but people can stay and eat on the patio. The bar is also open.
“There's a lot of work that goes into just getting the restaurants ready,” Sittnick said. “And then we'll be doing full table service at all the patio tables starting on Monday.”
San Francisco Mayor London Breed visited a Bayview neighborhood restaurant that is serving curbside — taking advantage of the city’s Shared Spaces program.
“Do your best,” she said. “Provide the distance. We've been talking about it. Do your best. And you know what? None of us expected to be in the middle of a global pandemic."
Restaurant managers said they’re looking forward to bringing back workers and then preparing for full indoor and outdoor dining.