After work resumed on Monday, most restaurants in the city decided to remain closed, citing problems with the UT’s SOP and demand for rent during the closure period, with the exception of waiting for a low turnout.
The UT’s Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) stipulate that all restaurants must close by 8 p.m. and that capacity is limited to 50%, which, according to the caterers, does not contribute to profits.
The fact that we have to take the last order before 7:30 p.m. is bad for business. Most of our income comes from dinner, especially in the summer. Moreover, we cannot process more than 50% of our capacity. This will certainly result in losses, said Ankit Gupta, president of the Chandigarh Hotel Association.
NO SPIRITS, NO DINNERNO DINNER
With the help of the SOPs and the alcohol ban, several restaurants in the city’s main food centres – sector 7 and 26 – will keep their doors closed.
The service of alcohol is part of the atmosphere offered by the restaurants. The lack of alcohol sales will certainly affect their income, Mr Gupta said.
Big Bear’s manager, Area 26, Debdip Chatterjee, said he wouldn’t open the store until the liquor could be sold. Avenfres in Sector 7 will be closed for two weeks because it was under repair, said Rohit Kumar, its owner.
However, the social facilities in the same area will be reopened, as will the Swagath Bar and Restaurant in Area 26, which offers food and non-alcoholic beverages, said Manish Gul, one of the managers of the two facilities.
In sector 35, which is the centre of hotels and fast food outlets, most snack bars will continue to offer only home delivery and transport services. Nikhil Mittal, director of Nick Bakers, Sector 35, said they would only offer take-out on their menu. We’ll keep an eye on the administration to apply DIS before they resume lunch duty, he said.
Two branches of the Indian coffee house in sectors 17 and 36 will follow suit, said Ramesh Dutt, director. We’ll wait a few days to find out before we fully open up, he said.
FAST FOOD CHAINS PUT PRESSURE ON THE INCHES
Some fast food chains probably do not offer food services either. A senior official at one of the city’s leading fast food brands claimed anonymity, said: All states will have different SOPs for fast food restaurants. Management will go through all this before deciding to start the dinners.
However, KFC India’s marketing director, Moksh Chopra, said they would come back with a limited menu. We have redecorated our restaurant to create social distance. A limited menu allows us to work with a small team. We’re determined to give our customers touch-free power, he said.
QUALITY RESTAURANTS REMAIN CLOSED
In the Elante shopping centre, the owners of the restaurant decided not to leave the building on Monday due to a deadlock between the tenants and the owners of the shopping and entertainment centre.
Sanveer Sondy, owner of the pyramid and director of the National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) in Chandigarh, said that restaurant owners are struggling to pay rent for the months of April and May, when the mall closed. Instead, we ask for a benefit distribution model based on the number of steps.
He said the meeting between the tenants and the mall authorities was scheduled for Monday.
HOTELS PARTLY BACK
Some hotels will resume their activities on Monday, while others will return as soon as the SOPs have been met.
The hotels that reopen on Monday will follow the SOP protocol and will only rent 50% of the rooms to maintain social distance, said Arvinder Pal Singh, president of Chandigarh Restaurant and Hotel Association, which also owns Metro Hotel in sectors 35 and 43.
The CEO of JW Marriott, Sector 35, Ramandip Marwa, said they were ready to serve their benefactors. The hotel rooms can be reserved and the restaurant will also be open to the public, as stipulated in the hotel and restaurant regulations.
The director of the Lalit Hotel in the computer park, Imit Arora, confirmed that they would not open yet. First we have to train our staff to follow the DIS issued by the administration and then we come back, he said.