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South Florida restaurants more worried about coronavirus than Hurricane Isaias

Pandemic keeping people away from restaurants
JUMBY BAY
Posted at 3:08 PM, Jul 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-31 16:08:53-04

JUPITER, Fla. — Several rainy weekends have kept customers away from South Florida restaurants compounding problems for restaurants to survive.

WPTV NewsChannel 5 talked to several area restaurants today and they said the thing that is hurting business the most is not weather like Hurricane Isaias approaching but the number of daily coronavirus infections that are being reported in Florida. They say the statistics are keeping guests away.

Another factor hurting business is Palm Beach County mandating establishments have to be closed by 11 p.m.

“We do a lot of our business from 11 p.m. – 2 p.m. And I understand that’s mainly in the bar area; so it gets a little too close for comfort so, closing at a 11 is a good thing right now until we can get everybody social distance and get these numbers down."
Andrea Guter, General Manager of Jumby Bay in Jupiter
“Unfortunately now that the [coronavirus] numbers have been high we are seeing a constant [decline in business almost every day,]"
Chef-Owner of Avocado Grill Julien Gremaud
"We are equally concerned, as [the pandemic and the hurricane] have serious impacts on our business. However, the long-term uncertainty of the coronavirus is what keeps me up at night."
Mark DeAtley, General Manager of Scusi Trattoria
"Evo Italian has been in Palm Beach County for 13 years. We know the people in this area are resilient, as is our restaurant. We've been through storms, hurricanes, and horrible weather and survived it all. The pandemic is something new, something none of us has seen in our lifetimes so certainly that's the biggest concern we believe we face. You can rebuild from a storm, you can evacuate from a storm, losing a life due to this virus is something we are taking extremely seriously. It's why we've taken some of the highest precautions we possibly can at Evo."
Chef-Owner Erik Pettersen
"We expect Isaias to impact our weekend business, but the health and economic impact of the coronavirus could impact our business for years to come. Hurricanes come and go - we know we can always recover. What we don't know is when this pandemic is going to go away."
Will Penenori, General Manager, The Cooper in PGA Commons
"While we've been through hurricanes, no one has ever experienced anything like the current COVID-19 pandemic. Hurricanes are not fun, but they come, you clean up, and they are over. We cannot predict what's going to happen with coronavirus, which makes planning very difficult."
Lee Morris, general manager, and culinary director at 1000 NORTH
"We are equally concerned, as [the pandemic and the hurricane] have serious impacts on our business. However, the long-term uncertainty of the coronavirus is what keeps me up at night."
Mark DeAtley, General Manager ofScusi Trattoria
"We are well prepared for hurricane season and do not anticipate that this storm will have an impact on business. COVID has clearly had a tremendous impact on businesses throughout the world. However, we have taken stringent measures to keep our guests and staff safe."

Todd Herbst, Co-Owner Big Time Restaurant Group