BENGALURU: Malls, restaurants and hotels resume service after two months, with establishments ensuring measures like temperature screenings, social distancing, mask use and contactless service. CE gives you a glimpse of the city’s hubs in their new normal avatar post Unlock 1.0
Bengaluru’s mall crawlers can finally smile again. Armed with triple security measures for entry – temperature scan, scrutiny for quarantine stamps, and sanitising of hands, malls are limping back to start it afresh. And the first day of opening itself a few shopping enthusiasts venture in. “Now it feels normal,” Santoshi B, who visited 1 MG-Lido Mall with her mother on Monday, said. “The brands I came for are not open yet, but I am still happy that it’s at least starting off,” she added.
Most malls were not at their crowded best, with less than 50 per cent of the stores open. “There are 104 stores in the mall, of which 43 have opened. Most of them are lifestyle and apparel stores. We had given them a safety checklist to follow and it’s just about putting the infrastructure in place,” said Vaibhav Kumar, manager of Vega City mall, where some of the first few customers were welcomed with a bouquet and a gift.
Food courts, however, remain shut, apart from fast food joints like McDonald’s, Burger King and KFC. “Since fast food joints have takeaways and meals are served there in paper covers, they are open currently. Also, many people working in food courts have returned to their native places during the pandemic. It’s also about getting enough manpower,” said John Joseph, centre manager, Garuda Mall, which is also undergoing renovation.
The other crowd-pullers at the malls – movie theatres – are also shut due to government orders. Though the first day saw a lukewarm response, the stakeholders say it was expected considering the anxiety around. “People will need time to get used to it. We are hoping for an increase in number of visitors on the weekend,” Joseph added.