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NYC Re-Opening Update

The situation for city tourism is changing in a New York minute. The latest guidance from the Governor gives us extended bar and restaurant curfews, zoo and museum capacity expanded to 50%, and movie theaters up to 33%. Sports and large event capacity moves to 25% as of May 19th. The city’s COVID rate is the lowest its been in almost five months. In addition, there are plenty of green shoots on the reopening front, especially for culture:

On the national recovery front, restaurant sales spiked last month to return to 2019 levels. The most recent retail sales report suggests the U.S. will see its fastest growth since 1984. Since the first of the year, Google searches for hotels are up 92%. With each passing day, recovery draws closer.

NYC Re-Opening Update

We are again overflowing with reopening news, as vaccine eligibility further expands and the CDC greenlights travel for those who’ve got their shots. Live theatre, music, and comedy have returned at least in part—even Jerry Seinfeld is back. The mayor has promised public health resources to get Broadway open by September. You can finally put a premiere back on your calendar: Diana: The Musical has set its opening night for December 16th. Headlines like City Hospitality and Tourism Prepping Spring Awakening and For New York City, Glimmers of Hope and Signs of Revival are popping up all over. Payrolls boomed in March, much of it thanks to hospitality and leisure. On the reopening front, there is much to be excited about:

NYC Re-opening Update

In conjunction with the waiving of quarantine requirements for vaccinated visitors, improving weather, and the potential return of international tourists by mid-May, expect to see the sidewalks busier than they’ve been in months. Already, the headlines are keeping pace…

On the reopening front, there is plenty to be excited about:

  • The Hayden Planetarium reopens today.
  • The Loeb Boathouse Central Park returns Monday, March 29th. (Rowboat rentals are back as well.)
  • Circle Line relaunches April 1st.
  • Resorts World New York City returns to full hours on April 5th.
  • On April 5th, the 11pm curfew for casinos, movie theaters, bowling alleys, pool halls, and gyms will be lifted (it stays in place for bars and restaurants, although that will be reevaluated in late April).

As of April 1st, the Mets and Yankees are fair game for fans again. Starting next week, Knicks and Rangers fans can ease entry to the Garden with proof of vaccination, negative test, or a 30-minute on-site antigen testing option.

NYC Tourism Update

Hibernations are ending. We’re seeing green shoots of growth both figurative and literal. Among the notable openings and reopenings:

  • Frick Madison, the temporary home of the Frick Collection, opens Thursday, March 18th, in the former Met Breuer.
  • After a year-long pause, Balthazar is back on March 24th.
  • The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum reopens March 25.
  • The Loeb Boathouse Central Park returns Monday, March 29th. (Rowboat rentals are back as well.)
  • Circle Line relaunches April 1st.
  • Film Forum screens again April 2nd.

The first new post-COVID marquee is up on Broadway, with Thoughts of a Colored Man ready to take up residence at the Golden Theatre. Broadway League President Charlotte St. Martin is still anticipating a 6-9 month wait for Broadway to return, but other live arts are starting up again—as of April 2nd, indoor performance venues can reopen at one-third capacity.

  • Park Avenue Armory has announced the launch of Social Distance Hall, with a season of new commissions premiering Wednesday, March 24th.
  • The NY PopsUp Initiative will start April 2nd with live arts on stages like the Apollo, St. Ann’s Warehouse, The SHED, and La MaMa.
  • Lincoln Center has Restart Stages, with 10 outdoor spaces starting April 7th.
  • New York State is testing the Excelsior Pass, which confirms COVID and vaccination status and may help fast track the return of big events.

Domestic travelers to New York who have both shots can now waive their quarantines, opening up more travel opportunities. No shock then that the most recent jobs report showed an unexpected gain of 379,000 jobs, most coming from leisure and hospitality. Spring is only 10 days away.