Restaurant staff ‘thrilled to be able to come back to work’
RESTAURANTS were upbeat and positive about the future of the hospitality industry on a fully booked first day back.
Smiles never left the faces of many of the islands’ restaurant staff as they served their first customers in nearly 10 weeks, while those who dined said it was good to feel a little bit of normality seeping into the island.
Le Nautique restaurant manager Simone Donazzan said they had prepared themselves against an onslaught of eager customers all excited to come and enjoy some great food they had not cooked for themselves.
‘We’re all thrilled to be able to come back to work,’ he said.
‘We’re like a family here and to be able to come together and do what we love to do, seeing other people and helping them to enjoy their night is such a great feeling.
‘Obviously for some it’s going to be very strange going into a restaurant after so long and with restrictions in place but we’re fully booked and ready.’
He added they had adapted the layout of the restaurant as well as some of their other interactions with customers.
‘Usually we can have 70 people in here but to ensure that social distancing can be adhered to this has been reduced to 40, so we’re operating at around 65-75% but everyone has had to adapt and we’re all in this together,’ he said.
‘It’s a learning curve but we must be positive and support each other.'
The Rockmount, which had received over 200 emails about bookings for when they would reopen was fully booked, as well as being booked for most of the week.
Their restaurant manager Oceane Cureau also said there had been lots of changes they had had to make to ensure they could open.
‘We’re cleaning constantly, ensuring that people are happy that we’re following guidance,’ she said.
‘On the tables we usually have menus but these have all had to be replaced by single-use ones, plus salt and ketchup that we’d have on the tables we’ve had to buy in miniature packets that can be thrown away.
‘All the restaurants are in a similar position and it’s difficult with everything else but it’s not bad.’
Despite the challenges and many lingering concerns in the island to avoid public settings because of coronavirus, fully booked restaurants meant hungry islanders keen to dine out and help both the economy and the hospitality industry.
A group of six friends, including Dan Le Poullarn, had enjoyed their lunch of cheeseburgers, steak Ciabatta and fish and chips at the Cobo Bay Hotel restaurant and were really pleased to be able to see each other after so long.
‘We’re hoping to stay here for some time and enjoy ourselves and a little bit of normality,’ he said.
‘It’s been nice and we’re going to stay here for some more food later.’