San Francisco businesses reopen to eager customers


Thrilled at the prospect of working in a real gym after nearly six months of shelter, Blair Marley-Perez was knocking on the door of 24 Hour Fitness’ California Street Gym in San Francisco at 5 a.m. Monday.

When she was told that the gym would not actually open for another two hours, she began wandering in the quiet financial district. It was the first time he had left his Alamo Square home since March to do something other than grocery shopping. He was back at 7, amazed by the ghostly atmosphere.

“Just coming here this morning and waiting for an hour, I feel amazing,” she said.

Thousands of San Francisco businesses were allowed to reopen on Monday, after nearly six months of shuttering, an opening embraced by business owners and customers, despite little guidance and just a few days of warning. The weather eased a bit, a hint of blue through the mist.

The city was teased with the reopening of a wider set of businesses in June, before Coronovirus Surge halted those plans. The rules abruptly changed in the past week, following a move by the state to liberalize restrictions for counties like San Francisco, which met new health targets to combat the epidemic. The gym and saloon, which had been closed for almost half a year, were told they could operate outside. 8. Two days later, they find out that they can open an indoor operation soon.


Although they were allowed to open on Monday morning, guidance for operations was not released until noon. Either way fitness and personal care operators went about the business, the following rules were available: low capacity, distance between customers and strict attention to hygiene. Indoor massages, tattoos and piercing parlors were also permitted, and the reopening of the outdoor family recreation center, drive-in movies and tour buses and boats.

“People are getting on the axis really quickly,” said Meredith Klausner, San Ramon’s regional vice president of 24-hour fitness. “After all the ups and downs, at some point, you just take what you can get.”

For Jim, that meant masks and 6- to 12-foot distances; 10% capacity; Closed locker rooms, showers, saunas and pools; And tons of disinfectants. Employees followed gym goers with sanitizing solutions, but masked and bewildered 24-hour fitness members wiped their own equipment on Monday after each use.

Cleanliness seemed to be on Monday. Ahmet Giftagi spent the entire weekend cleaning up the Financial District, which has been in the Financial District for 33 years, and he sent an employee back to take another swipe before accepting his first client on Monday.

“Even though it is going to slow down for a while, because many of our customers are working from home, I would rather have it shut down. I am happy about that, ”said Giftagi, adding that her phone has a deadline to schedule appointments for the week.

Some nail salon owners are taking a measured approach to reopening, such as Annie Stancliffe, owner of High Five, a nail salon north of the Pondhale neighborhood.

This weekend is a pre-booked event that provides free manicures to essential workers; “Preview Week” began on September 24 for customers who had to rebook previously canceled appointments; And an officer to reopen to the public on 1 October.

Frank Lavin (background) and Anush Vinod work on the new 24-hour fitness at 100 California St.

“We are opening up with indoor and outdoor options, and we are ready to either / or pivot depending on air quality, if the ban for indoor operations comes back again,” Stancliffe said.

The tourism sector is also making its impact on the fly. Hotels, previously housing confined to health care workers, traveling in essential businesses and some other categories of guests, were given the green light to offer reservations to tourists, a main customer base for the city’s hospitality sector . But not all hotels were ready to welcome him.

Hotel Zephyr at Fisherman’s Wharf said on a recorded phone message that it had suspended all services from 1 October, although customers could still make online reservations for later dates.

The decline in tourism and business travel left the industry again and fired thousands.

“The last few months have been very difficult,” said Kevin Carroll, CEO of the Hotel Council of San Francisco, a business organization. “Financially, it is devastating.”

Carroll estimates the occupancy rate is now 15%, compared to 85% a year ago, and job prospects for the region’s nearly 25,000 workers, most of whom have been laid off, are dim. He said a full recovery was expected to be three to four years, noting that there is still widespread panic around the trip.

San Francisco Movie Tours reduced its fleet to a 13-passenger van. The company will initially offer private tours with at least two guests.

“We are very excited about this reopening, although we do not expect much revenue between now and summer 2021,” said owner Brian Rice, who is not able to secure a paycheck security program loan Struggled after He is now working on a Ford Transit van that will be cleaned after each tour and will include plexiglass between the driver and passengers.

Marley-Perez tried to rent a U-Hale vehicle this weekend to move a couch, but because a lot of people are moving out of San Francisco, it was impossible. But as she thought and the smoke-filled air hung over her, she emerged from 24 Hour Fitness with a fresh perspective, she said.

“I wiped out every machine and tried to be really careful about being super clean,” she said. “If we can all do this, because we’re all very excited, we can find a way to reopen and stay open.”

Shawnika Narayan and Rusty Simmons are the authors of the San Francisco Chronicle. Email: [email protected], [email protected] Twitter: @Shwanika, @Rusty_SFChron

It is working

Hundreds of small gyms and fitness studios in San Francisco were able to open on Monday, despite slight changes and guidance from descending officers after the doors were unlocked. Here’s what happened to the big box chain:

24 Hour Fitness: All five gyms in San Francisco are open as of Monday and will expand from 5 pm to 9 pm Tuesday. The chain closed four locations in June after filing for bankruptcy.

Shortage: Five of the club’s six gyms are open as of Monday. The 345 Spear St. location at Hills Plaza is permanently closed, as Crunch said it could not come to a favorable lease agreement with its landlord.

Equinox: All San Francisco locations remain closed, and the company said it has no timetable when it reopens on the West Coast.

Planet Health: The company said its 417 Montgomery St. gym in San Francisco is expected to open on Wednesday.

– Roland Lee