COVID-19 guidelines force two downtown Norfolk restaurants to close

Posted at 10:20 PM, May 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-26 22:26:23-04

NORFOLK, Va. - A brother and sister's five-year dream swept away.

"It's just gone in a flash. I cried lots of tears!" said Tiffany Kidwell-Gaylord.

She said she cried when she realized she would have to pack up the furniture and clear out the kitchens at Saint Germain and the Pourhouse of Norfolk, two side by side restaurants and bars on Granby Street.

"We put a lot of money into it and put a lot of our heart and soul,” Kidwell-Gaylord adds. She owns both restaurants with her younger brother.

She says she couldn't sustain the restaurants with the coronavirus curbside and delivery guidelines.

"We really don't do to-go food. Part of the experience of being at Saint Germain was the experience,” she said.

Customers on Facebook responded to the closing announcements with disbelief and well wishes.

"We had amazing clientele and I'm grateful to all of them," one comment read.

Related: Local restaurants ditch outdoor seating for safety during Phase One reopening

The owner tells News 3 that never in a million years did she think she would have clear out her bar or pack up for drinks, but she said this was the best decision financially. Kidwell-Gaylord says, "We'd rather hang on to the money that we do have and be responsible with it and think about a future endeavor."

She did apply for the small business loans but withdrew her application when she realized she would have to start paying back a loan with no revenue coming in.

“I think it was a great run. And if we have to go out , I like to say that we're going out by no fault of our own,” she adds.

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