SALT LAKE CITY – As Salt Lake City goes to yellow risk, businesses are cautiously optimistic as they try to maintain a balance between growing their businesses and staying safe.
Pierpont Place owner Janice Boes says she had prepared for a recession, not a pandemic.
So she had to get creative to keep the events space company open with COVID-19 around.
Workers began delivering custom floral arrangements and created an exclusive concert series for small groups.
However, that did not make up for all the business the company lost.
Now, Boes is cautiously optimistic things can start returning to normal because Salt Lake City is in the yellow risk phase and customers are ringing her up again.
“I think people are still trying to navigate what’s possible, but what’s nice is they are calling. We are going to work as diligently as possible to provide the space to our guests, but on a smaller scale” Boes says.
Tricia Bannion, the owner of Nailed! in downtown Salt Lake City, is relieved the city is in the yellow, as business has been tough the last couple of months.
“My numbers have been down like 68% since May, when we reopened. So, this means I’ll be able to utilize each of my stations, and I’ll be able to get business back up to more normal,” Bannion says.
Salt Lake City’s restrictions have also taken a toll on outside businesses.
Ryan Carver, the founder and head trainer at Leverage Fitness Solutions in Cottonwood Heights, says they cater to clients who are older and live in Salt Lake City.
Having to switch to online classes has not been ideal, and he hopes many of his clients will now feel comfortable coming through the door.
“With Salt Lake going yellow, we’re hoping that we can start getting some of our clients back into the facility, where they can have a better experience and accelerate their goals,” Carver says.
Many businesses say their safety protocols go above and beyond to help nervous people feel better about coming through their doors, as timid customers could be a big challenge going forward.
But some restaurants are not comfortable reopening indoor dining.
Amrol Hararah, the owner of Sicilia Pizza Kitchen, says the restaurant is sticking with pickup and delivery until the city gets to the green level.
“[It is for] health reasons. We try to keep everything about the restaurant safe because I’m a cancer survivor,” Hararah says.
Other restaurants say they do not have enough room to safely social distance but may reevaluate when winter comes.