Czech cinemas, beer gardens, museums and more have reopened, but with conditions

More shops and services can now operate, but strict rules for hygiene and crowd size still apply

Raymond Johnston

Written by Raymond Johnston Published on 11.05.2020 12:23:46 (updated on 11.05.2020) Reading time: 3 minutes

A new wave of the easing of coronavirus restrictions came into effect May 11, with the largest amount of planned reopenings of categories of business.

Theaters, concert venues, cinemas, museums, art galleries,. exhibition spaces, outdoor beer gardens, outdoor restaurant seating and the rest of stores in shopping malls being allowed to reopen. Wedding ceremonies, religious services and other group events are possible for up to 100 people. Barber shops, beauty and nail salons, and massage services can also resume operations.

Venue operators are supposed to follow strict hygiene rules, including mandatory nose and mouth protection, social distancing and regular hand washing. Complete rules can be found on the Health Ministry website.

The interiors of restaurants, hotels, castles and chateaux, and services such as tattooing and piercing can resume May 25.

But health officials are still urging people to exercise caution. “Just because something is made available doesn’t mean that everyone should go there, even if they feel great withdrawal symptoms from shopping and the like. At the same time, one must take into account one’s immediate surroundings,” epidemiologist Rastislav Maďar said, according to new broadcaster ČT 24.

Health Minister Adam Vojtěch (for ANO) said on Twitter on May 10 that life was slowly returning to normal. “Back to life. Tomorrow begins another big wave of release measures. A few weeks ago, we couldn’t imagine going to a restaurant garden or a hairdresser. That will become a reality tomorrow. In compliance with strict hygiene rules,” he said.

Vojtěch and Deputy Minister of Health Roman Prymula both reminded people that even though the infection had dropped, the coronavirus was still present and hygiene measures, especially social distancing, were still necessary.

Cinemas will leave every other row empty, and people can sit in groups of two, leaving a free seat between the next group, and only 100 people will be allowed in each auditorium. Consumption of beverages or food is not yet allowed possible yet.

In Prague, film schedules are picking up where the left off in March, with no new releases. The Cinestar multiplexes at Anděl and Černý Most have announced a limited schedule with discounts. The Cinema City chain, which includes theaters Slovanský dům, Flora, Nový Smíchov, Chodov and Zličín, on the other hand, is not yet reopening.

Arthouse theaters including Aero, Světozor, Bio Oko, Lucerna, Evald, Mat and Kinokavárna Pilotů are also starting screenings. Kino Dlabačov is operating as a drive in.

The National Museum on Wenceslas Square and other venues reopens May 11. The National Gallery in Prague, Prague City Gallery and the Rudolfinum Gallery will reopen on May 12, as they are normally closed Mondays. All of them will have limited numbers of tickets and social distancing rules in place. Dox will reopen May 27.

outdoor seating
A restaurant near náměstí Jiřího z Poděbrad with outdoor seating / via Raymond Johnston

For restaurants, groups of people can sit together at a table of the restaurant, but they must be at least 1.5 meters from guests at the next table. Restaurants still cannot allow indoor seating but can let customers use the rest rooms. Face coverings can be removed for consuming food or beverages, but should be worn at other times.

Prague relaxed the rules for having outdoor seating, but interested restaurants should have already notified the city of their intentions.

Shops of shopping centers with an area of over 5,000 square meters are also opening, but must have a compliance monitor for hygiene rules as well as posted information about social distancing. Indoor eateries in malls still cannot reopen.

People can also try on clothes in stores, but only after disinfecting hands. Returned clothing items must be stored for 24 hours before they can be put back on shelves or racks for customers to buy.

Sporting activities can involve up to 100 people, but showers and locker rooms remain closed.

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