PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – Gigglewaters in Safety Harbor has adapted to the coronavirus shutdown in many different ways.
The modern speakeasy has closed down their bar area to customers and, instead, has offered curbside pickup and delivery orders. Gigglewaters has also fed the unemployed for free and provided meals to healthcare workers through their Feed the Frontlines Program.
“A week before the pandemic, we were having record-breaking numbers, a two-hour wait on a Friday to Saturday night. The place was jumping and then the world kind of stopped,” said Gigglewaters owner Rachel Wilson. “The silver lining in all of this has been watching the community come together to support us and allow us to support them and truly see the best in our town.”
Now, the Pinellas County social club is ready to let customers back inside. As of Tuesday, Gigglewaters received word that they would be allowed to reopen their screening room.
“At this moment, what we’re going to do is small intimate private parties. The CDC has recommended a maximum of 10 people be together at any given time, so we are going to do private rentals for your family and quarantine buddies. Up to 10 people maximum for lunch and dinner, seven days a week,” said Wilson.
Wilson explains to WFLA.com that her business is taking several safety precautions in an effort to protect customers.
“All of our servers are gloved, we wash hands and change gloves every 20 minutes. We are also masked at all times. We are also using UV light technology. We can wand everything, tables, chairs, anything you come in contact with.”
Another way Gigglewaters is keeping patrons safe is seating them outside.
“We are keeping the dining room closed and we have extended the patio. All of our tables are 6 feet apart, some are significantly more,” said Wilson. “You can dine outside, get some elbow room and fresh air.”
Tampa-based part equipment rental service Elite Events & Rentals added tents to Gigglewaters’ outdoor space to make the patio more enjoyable for patrons.
“We gave them our idea, we pitched it to them on Monday afternoon. We were here on Tuesday and we put them up in a couple of hours so that they could be ready for lunch,” said Elite Events & Rentals owner Brandon Ahlgren.
Ahlgren tells WFLA.com during the pandemic, he has used tents to help various bars and restaurants move their business outside.
“As a small business owner, we realize that it’s not just about our business, it’s about all the small businesses in the community,” said Ahlgren. “Right now, it’s not about making a profit, it’s about helping everybody so we can get through this.