Local bar owners were left frustrated and disappointed after being issued orders to close down after reopening during Phase 1 of the de-escalation. Some bars who were allowed to remain open were told to cancel all scheduled live music as only ambient music is allowed.
The confusion seems to come from rules regarding the reopening of bar and restaurant terraces in commercial centres with many owners being told to close due to lack of main road access directly to the terrace.
After a devastating couple of months, many bars and restaurants were able to reopen 50% of their terraces, as long as they applied social distancing rules and other guidelines such as restricting bathroom access, providing menu boards rather than shared menus etc. However, the light at the end of the tunnel dimmed at the weekend when many bars in commercial centres such as Los Dolses were told on Thursday they had to close down again. Then, just days later, the decision was reversed and some of those same bars and restaurants were told that they could in fact reopen.
Venues with live music planned for this coming week have been left uncertain as ambient music is allowed, which some bar owners have interpreted to be acoustic artists or DJs playing ambient tunes. However, in some instances larger acts have had to cancel shows rather than take the risk of being fined.
Owners hope that when the region enters phase 2, the rules will become clearer and that local businesses can begin recouping their losses.