‘It’s just crazy’: Customers flock to businesses before two-week shutdown

Coronavirus

HONOLULU (KHON2) — Non-essential businesses on Oahu like gyms, hair and nail salons, theaters and dine-in at restaurants must close by Thursday, Aug. 27 for at least two weeks.

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Many businesses say that they have been busy all Wednesday, but even with the customers coming in, many are worried about the toll this second stay at home order will take.

Salon 808 on Oahu was bustling with customers all day long with calls coming in non-stop since Mayor Kirk Caldwell announced the order on Tuesday, Aug. 25.

“It’s just crazy, you know, trying to accommodate as much people as we can,” said Salon 808 stylist Logan Kamalani.

He said that they were booked solid the whole day, but it won’t be enough to get them through the next two weeks.

“For our own people, we’re not going to be working so you’re going to have to deal with the whole unemployment stuff and get back on to that,” said Kamalani.

Roy Yamaguchi, who is the head chef and founder of Roy’s, said that they were also booked solid Wednesday night.

“A lot of people that wanted to celebrate–whether it be birthdays or anniversaries next week or even this weekend has called up and asked if they’d be able to come in,” Yamaguchi said.

He said losing dine-in service, even though they were only working at 50 percent capacity, will be a big hit, and they will need to rely on the community to keep up business through take-out services.

“Restaurants have these huge expenses,” said Yamagichi. “At this day and age, what we have to do is lose as less money as we can on a day to day basis so that we can come out of it at the other end and hopefully serve our community.”

Ka Makana Alii said the mall will remain open because there are still essential businesses there. But Stephanie England, the general manager, says that they’ve been fielding calls from tenants all day who were unsure if they should shut down or not and had to clarify with the City and County of Honolulu.

“It was nice to get that order this afternoon to really clear those things up and allowed us to be able to move forward and tenants, our merchants to actually make the decision of whether they were classified essential or non-essential,” said England.

England said the businesses that will remain open include Foodland farms, Straub Medical Center, PetSmart, T-Mobile and Verizon, as well as restaurants for take-out only.

Consolidated and Regal theaters will also be closing after re-opening just last week. Consolidated said any tickets pre-purchased after the shutdown date will be refunded.

Kailua Cinemas said the timing for the closure will hurt.

“It’s hard for us because this weekend was actually going to be the first weekend for movie theaters as a whole that we’re going to have all new movies,” said Kailua Cinemas general manager Aaron Kunioka.

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