Patrons eating at Open Hearth in Taylors, South Carolina were in for a hilarious surprise. The restaurant has recently opened back up again amid the coronavirus pandemic and they had to get crafty to deal with social distancing measures put in place.
Dolls In Public Spaces Might Become The Newest Trend
In an attempt to space out customers, the restaurant has several tables with just blow-up dolls. They are also offering disposable menus that can just be tossed out after one use. This helps prevent the spread of germs from person to person. The dolls are even dressed up in human attire and wearing wigs. Some of them have on floppy hats, glasses and necklaces. The owners really took the time out to make sure each blow-up doll actually looked like a real person. There is no question that the owners of the restaurant have a great sense of humor in uncertain times like these. It also raises the question of when other restaurants are able to open up their dine-in services, will they also use the same technique?
Sure, a blow-up doll staring at you from across the restaurant might be a little creepy, but safety measures are important to follow. South Carolina has moved into phase two of reopening after reaching 20,122 confirmed coronavirus cases. Restaurants have been re-opened but only will be allowed to operate at 50% capacity.
Some People Think This New Idea In Restaurants Is Odd
The restaurant preferred to use the blow-up dolls instead of yellow caution tape because they are more friendly and approachable. The dolls are sitting at every other table which has helped space out customers appropriately. As you could imagine, some people are not on board with this new way of social distancing. One person on YouTube commented, “This is the most ridiculous, freakish and creepy thing I’ve seen with this pandemic so far!!!” Not everyone is going to be a fan of fake people staring at them while they dine.
Another restaurant in Virginia, The Inn at Little Washington is using mannequins to seat at tables to comply with social distancing guidelines. They are also operating at 50% capacity after reopening. These mannequins are dressed in 40s style outfits and the servers even interact with them to make the experience more fun. In an interview with the Charlotte Observer, chef Patrick O’Connell said: “I’ve always had a thing for mannequins — they never complain about anything, and you can have lots of fun dressing them up.” He is having fun with this new kind of dining experience even though it may not be ideal. A Thai restaurant in Bangkok even filled its seats with stuffed panda bears. It gives the illusion that the restaurant is full while still maintaining social distancing practices.
How would you feel about eating at a restaurant with a bunch of blow-up dolls? Is it creepy or innovative through this crazy time?