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Spain's Valencia region to reopen bar and restaurant terraces after 40 days

The Local Spain
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Spain's Valencia region to reopen bar and restaurant terraces after 40 days
People enjoy the sunny weather at a terrace at La Malvarrosa beach in Valencia, on May 19, 2020.Photo: AFP

Bars, cafés and restaurants in the eastern Spanish region will be allowed to reopen on Tuesday March 2 after 40 days of government imposed closures, but there will still be restrictions in place for these businesses and their customers.

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Valencia’s government has given the green light for the region’s approximately 32,500 bars and restaurants (pre-Covid figures) to reopen to the public on Tuesday March 2.

There will be no limit on the total capacity of terraces but tables will have to be separated according to safety distance regulations and the maximum number of people per table is set at six.

Customers will not be allowed access to the bars’ and restaurants’ interior.

This will prove to be a major problem for around 50 percent of hospitality businesses as they don’t have a terrace or space outside available.

After appealing to the Generalitat government, the region’s Health Department finally decided that it could not allow customers inside these establishments as it poses too much of a health risk.

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Closing time is yet to be confirmed by Valencian authorities, with hospitality representatives pushing for it to be until the region’s curfew time at 10pm and government and health authorities preferring for it to be at 6pm when non-essential shops currently close.

There are also ongoing discussions relating to whether these non-essential retailers in the region of 5 million people should be allowed to stay open until 8pm.

Although many bar and restaurant owners in the Comunitat Valenciana will be relieved by the news since they were forced to close on January 21, the Valencian Business Confederation of Hospitality and Tourism (Conhostur) has called the measures "insufficient".

What are the Covid restrictions in Valencia and other parts of Spain?
 

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