Soundset Beach Club Fined Just One Week Before The Restrictions Are Lifted
A Playa Del Carmen bar was closed for staying open beyond the current COVID-related operating hours. The bar was also fined for breaking the rules and several people were arrested.
Currently, bars, restaurants, and clubs are required to close at 1 AM. The rule has been in place throughout the pandemic, and although relaxed during the green zone periods, yellow and orange zones on the Mexican epidemiological traffic light system have required time constraints.
The bar in question, the Soundset Beach Club, was spotted by a police patrol after the required closing time. When support staff arrived, there was found to have multiple people inside drinking alcohol.
The bar was immediately shut down, and several employees were detained. It is unclear if the customers were reprimanded in any way. The bar was temporally closed for an undisclosed amount of time, and a fine is expected to be paid before it can open once more.
The larger threat for the bar is losing its liquor license if it is caught breaking rules again. It can be assumed there may be extra eyes on the premises in the coming weeks to ensure that rules are not broken again.
The timing of the fine and closure is unfortunate for the bar. Just days later, the Governor of Quintana Roo announced that the region will be returning to the green zone on the traffic light system. Although confirmation is still forthcoming, it is assumed that there may be a relaxation in the operating hours restrictions, meaning just a week later and the rule-breaking may not even have been necessary.
The new rules will be welcomed across the entire state, and if the operating hours are extended or completely relaxed, bars and clubs could see a return to relative normality.
Both bars and clubs are disproportionally affected by many countries’ COVID regulations, as many rules have centered around alcohol consumption leading to closer contact and less observation of the basic sanitary advice given to help prevent infection.
Hotels and restaurants have suffered, but hotels, in particular, have been offered considerable wiggle-room when it comes to operating capacity. Bars and clubs were forced to completely close at some levels, although many were able to work around the rules by offering “food” and temporarily transforming into a restaurant of sorts.
But with the new rules, all establishments now have the opportunity to move forward with minimal barriers to their success. The Easter break is approaching, and although hotels aren’t expected to make it to full capacity, getting well over 85% of the available rooms filled will be a welcome change, and the success should trickle out to the bars and clubs.
As the rest of the world opens up to more and more tourists it’s important for Cancun to maintain its current standing as one of the most popular destinations on the planet. Shifts towards a safer environment are already well underway and the yearly battle with sargassum has also started, making a clear statement that Cancun and Quintana Roo intends to hold onto its newfound market.
Travelers hoping to travel to Cancun in the near future should keep on top of the restrictions, as well as the sargassum situation. Any updates on the operational hours will be reported in the near future, and the new green zone period will begin on Monday the 21st of February. Any further changes to the traffic light zone will be announced next Thursday. The COVID continues to slow, so any return to yellow worse is not anticipated.
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