Carina Dittmann and Susan Anderson from Lily's Cafe.
Carina Dittmann and Susan Anderson from Lily's Cafe.

Cafes on standby for dine-in go-ahead

CAFE owners around the region are on the edges of their seats waiting for the government to announce an official date customers will be allowed to return to dining in.

Lily's Cafe owner Susan Anderson said she would be pleased to have customers back in her Maryland St cafe.

"Our plan is to continue exactly what we have been doing but just have the dine-in available when we get the go-ahead," Ms Anderson said.

"It will be nice to put our tables and chairs out again and have the sound of our customers instead of an empty room all day," she said.

She said their takeaway and delivery services as well as daily specials had been a big help in keeping the doors open.

"The support from our customers has been amazing but we are still down around 50 per cent of our regular trade.

"We will be here for as long as we possibly can and are looking forward to having our customers back in."

Zest Pastries joint owner Emma Lambert is also looking forward to returning to dine-in and said without the support from customers, their doors would be shut.

"Business has been continuing as close to normal as it can for us," Ms Lambert said.

"We are thankful that our customers have been continuing to come in and adapting to the situation.

"You have to look at the positives, that's for sure."

Closing the doors to her cafe indefinitely prior to the coronavirus outbreak, Cafe 77 owner Tammy Robinson has been using this time to "create something a little bit more modern for the community".

"I have been a chef for 27 years and have not had a significant break like this ever," she said.

"It has been a good time to reflect on other things and utilise it for some rebranding."

When the government does allows cafes to return to dining in, Ms Robinson said they would be following a new business plan.

"We have really taken the time to concentrate on changing the way we operate so we are excited to have some customers back."

This comes after Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk claimed that June was a "good, ambitious target" for cafes, restaurants and bars to reopen.

Restaurant and Catering Australia is working with the State Government to get businesses back up and running, and chief executive Wes Lambert has submitted reopening guidelines to National Cabinet.

The proposed measures include a 1.5m distancing rule ¬between tables, no condiments on tables, hand sanitisers throughout establishments, disposable menus and social distancing in waiting areas.

It is understood that National Cabinet, which will meet today and on Friday, could tell bosses to prepare to reopen on June 1 - possibly earlier, depending on the uptake of the coronavirus tracing app.

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