Lockdown restrictions and new regulations have affected small businesses all over the world. Shop closures have hit record levels in the UK. Yelp data suggests that 60% of the businesses that closed during the pandemic in the US will not be re-opening. Due to the new measures across Europe many shops and restaurants are now facing even more economic difficulties.Many local businesses that our locals support and cover on the Spotted by Locals city blogs, are getting creative in order to survive. In this article we’re covering some cool initiatives. We invite you to look out for them, and do what you can to support local entrepreneurs in these difficult times!
The “at-home” drinks experience
This is a time when we are all missing going out with some friends for drinks and a bite to eat. The times have changed fast and we are quickly adapting to this concept. By looking at some of our favourite spots in our city blogs, we discovered some innovative solutions for both bars and restaurants which are offering “At-home” experiences.
Many of our favourite cocktail bars are creating take away / delivery cocktails. They come in a pouch or bottle ready to be consumed by adding few finishing touches at home. Check out for example Dogma in Antwerp, La Burlona in Madrid or Dutch Kills in New York.
Another trend that has took off recently is a subscription service. The beer institute in Bucharest sends you a package different of Romanian beers every month for a nice price. And at Caffenation in Antwerp you can sign up to receive a different roast in your mailbox every week with instructions on how to make the perfect coffee with those beans.
Theaters and clubs get creative
The nightlife industry is suffering like no other, and most governments do little to support them. Most clubs have been getting creative right from the start of the crisis, in order to continue to be able to keep paying the rent.
Club C12 did a crowdfunding at the beginning of the summer where you could buy a silver or golden keychain that will grant free access to the first month (silver) or first year (golden) of reopening. Also you can buy newly created t-shirts and other cool merchandise through the crowdfunding site.
The legendary Dour festival did a crowdfunding campaign in November this year where you can buy things like your favourite artists’ first DJ booth or their iconic blue wig etc.
In Amsterdam, small theater De Kleine komedie has invited all their regular artists to record a mini-show on their stage. There’s an advent calendar on the website, where each day a new window can be opened with a link to a video by a different surprise artist. This project has financially been made possible by a family who has helped De Kleine Komedie survive 2021 but chooses to remain anonymous. Heartwarming!
Fine dining at home
Some traditional restaurants that probably have not imagined offering a delivery service before the corona crisis, have been very innovative. In Vienna for example, our favourite traditional restaurant Stuwer delivers the ingredients and video instructions for you to finalise and learn how to make your favorite Austrian Gansl at home in only 30 minutes!
Restaurant quality meals at home
Some restaurants have reimagined and redesigned the way food is delivered. In order to keep the food fresh, delivery safe and up to restaurant standards, new movements started to take place like the “Heat-and-eat” for unconventional meals. In Glasgow for example, our favourite pizza spot Paesano Pizza has started a “Cook at Home” range with partially cooked pizza. The pizza comes wrapped to preserve its freshness. All you need to do is to put it in the oven for 5 minutes and your pizza will be as good as fresh from a wood-fired oven!
Get creative a home!
Feeling creative? We got you covered! One of our favourite spots in Bucharest started a cool initiative. Made by You has started ceramic painting kits to get creative at home while the current restrictions are limiting outdoors and indoors activities.
So next time you are missing “Going Out” check what’s happening in your area and you may be surprised by what you can find. We hope this article will encourage you to look out for what’s going on in your area and support your local small businesses until we’ll be able to go back and get to enjoy going out physically again!