Shoppers line up outside the Lucas de Gálvez market Monday as Yucatan slowly reopens its economy. Photo: Facebook

Merida, Yucatan — On the first day of the first wave in reopening the economy, shoppers flocked downtown for some overdue errands.

Today brought relief to many business owners ordered shut down more than two months ago as health officials acted to stem the spread of deadly coronavirus. An estimated 25% of downtown businesses served customers today.

As estimated 60 billion pesos to the economy was lost while “non-essential” business were ordered closed.

Business owners are still ordered to comply with a laundry list of safety regulations and register with the state before unlocking their doors.

Patrons lined up outside Lucas de Gálvez and San Benito markets, which were closed down entirely two weeks ago when 47 vendors tested positive for COVID-19. The massive mercados were cleaned and sanitized, and both shoppers and sellers were warned about basic precautions against coronavirus.

Dozens of hotels were open as well, although the state’s biggest — the Hyatt Regency and the Fiesta Americana — remained closed. While tourism isn’t back, hotels can reach 25% occupancy for guests. Los Aluxes and the Wyndham were among the better-known hotels booking online late Monday.

Restaurants such as Cafeteria Pop and La Recova steakhouse fired up their grills, while Hennessy’s Irish Pub and Flamante Burgers stuck to home-delivery for now.

The Robert Abuda Salon de Belleza was open, but for haircuts only. Next door, the Pistache Patisserie & Boulangerie remained shut down with no plans to reopen.


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