With people being quarantined in their houses and advised to avoid being in places with large crowds, plenty of local businesses are being seriously affected by the lack of customers and visitors, with restaurants being among the most affected.
Restaurants, especially in the city, are normally flooded at lunch time by workers and tourists. But with many companies having their staff work from home and visitors staying away from Stockholm, many restaurants have been having to let some of their staff go when there is no work and they are no longer able to pay for their salaries. Several restaurants have already deemed it necessary to close their doors. Even the few people that are still frequenting their work places and going out, don’t know if the eateries are open.
“We are normally full, but this week we are only two people working at the restaurant because we don’t have customers. The rest of the staff are being kept on hold. Some of the customers we do have said that they didn’t know we were open. I can recommend people to call the restaurant in advance to find out if they’re open, to go and buy takeout food, that would really help us!” Says Miguel Padilla chef at Pastis French Bistro in Gamla Stan
In shopping mall food courts like the one at Heron City, about a 20% of normal sale was registered during the past weekend, when they normally tend to have the highest demand. Restaurants in these locations have their premises running with as few as two people working and barely selling what their salary cost is.
Thousands and thousands of jobs are at stake, and many restaurants will be on the brink of bankruptcy. If people would like to see a lively Stockholm restaurant scene also after this, we should try to support our local restaurants any way we can. Obviously getting takeaway food is a great way but another way could be to buy a gift voucher to be used for later.
Many restaurants are getting creative about how to survive this thing. For example the owner of Strandvägen 1, Pelle Lydmar himself, was out on the terrace barbecuing for lunch; Indian Street Food Co is utilising their food trucks to do home deliveries themselves and quite a few places are offering discounts on takeaway food.