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Dine-in restaurants, malls can reopen in Solano County

Bay Area

SOLANO COUNTY, Calif. (KRON) — Following in the footsteps of Napa County, Solano County became the second in the Bay Area to move into expanded Phase 2 reopening.

The county now has state approval to reopen dine-in restaurants, schools, malls and other retail businesses.

At the Loft wine bar and restaurant in Benicia, they’re ready for a Thursday night reopening of dine-in customers.

“People have been really itching to come in and feel a sense of normalcy,” Owner Jason Diavatis said. “So we see that they’re very excited about it.”

Following the state’s OK, Solano County has issued an updated health order allowing for dine-in eatingm which is a relief to many who has seen business plummet over the last two months.

“Everyday that we’ve opened for take out, there’s been a loss of revenue,” Diavatis said. “There’s not enough take out business to actually sustain the cost to run the operation.”

At Gracie’s BBQ in Vallejo, they agree take out only is not enough to pay the bills, but at this point they are not doing a full reopening.

“You can’t just open up,” Owner Ken Ingersoll said. “Because that means adding more staff and that doesn’t mean adding more business.”

Ingersoll says he’s concerned there may not be enough people willing to dine in, and even if there is he’s not sure social distancing requirements will allow enough of them to sit, so he’s taking it slowly.

“I’ll probably start off with maybe some outside seating,” he said. “Give the customers the ability to order, but still drop it off in a disposable container.”

At the Loft, they have plenty of outdoor seating that will allow for distancing, however the same can’t be said inside.

“We don’t have room to take out tables. If we take out tables you’re only gonna get a few people in here anyways,” Diavatis said. “In terms of social distancing requirements, its gonna be up to people and what they’re comfortable with.”

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