The shopping and dining district has re-opened with new safety procedures in place and we visited CityWalk restaurants to see how these changes impact guests’ overall eating experience.
Universal announced that CityWalk would be opening with limited operations available from 4PM to 10PM. We confirmed the following locations are open beginning today:
- Auntie Anne’s Pretzels
- Bubba Gump Shrimp Co.™ Restaurant and Market
- Jimmy Buffett’s® Margaritaville® (outside & Lone Palm)
- Red Oven Pizza Bakery™ mobile ordering available
- Voodoo Doughnut mobile ordering available
To enter CityWalk, all guests and Team Members are required to wear a face covering and have their temperatures checked. Read more about our first day experience here.
Let’s recap our dining experience at CityWalk today and talk all things food!
We were hearing reports of wait times of over two hours to be seated at Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville. Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. also had longer wait times throughout the evening. When checking in at the host stands, hand sanitizer is available for you to use. This was the only place we noticed hand sanitizer around the dining areas, so we recommend you bring your own bottle!
When you are seated, a busser comes to your table with a sanitized plastic bin containing your place settings for you to grab yourself.
You are also given a plastic bag to place your face mask in while you dine, and you can remove your mask once you are seated.
Tables are spread out to comply with physical distancing guidelines. According to a staff member, seating was reduced by approximately 50%.
At sit-down dining locations like Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville, disposable paper menus are used.
Several sanitization precautions were in place. At Auntie Anne’s Pretzels, receipt tray menus were in two designated bins – “Sanitized” and “Un-Sanitized.”
At sit-down dining locations, servers do not handle the food. Specific food runners are assigned to each table, and they deliver the food one plate at a time. The food comes with an extra plate on the bottom for handling.
When delivering drinks, employees are trained to only touch the very bottom of your beverage cup or glass.
When you are done eating, you are asked to place your plate at the edge of the table so the employee that takes your plate away does not need to reach across your table. Other precautions include frequent sanitization of work stations, including screens and check trays at least every fifteen minutes, by our observation.
Walk-up dining locations like Auntie Anne’s Pretzels and Voodoo Doughnut are accepting cash as payment at this time. At sit-down dining locations, the payment process has been streamlined to reduce the amount of visitations your server makes to your table. Guests are given checks that allow you to fill in gratuity and final payment amount right away. The server does not make physical contact with the receipt tray itself when it is dropped off at your table. Guests are given sanitized pens to sign with.
There are some other modified experiences at restaurants that were noticed today. For example, Margaritaville is currently NOT allowing walk-up drink orders to go. However, when you are seated at the restaurant, alcoholic beverages are still available for purchase. At Red Oven Pizza Bakery, you can order beer and wine, and they also offer mobile order.
For more information on our visit to CityWalk, you can check out our full experience, but we will continue to keep you updated with more information!
What do you think of the new dining experience? Let us know in the comments.