Jobs lost, hearts broken as fine dining fare-welled for now
THREE of the Fraser Coast's top restaurants are closed indefinitely - opting not to provide takeaway in the wake of the COVID-19 dining in ban.
In Maryborough, 71 Wharf has changed its decision to offer takeaway and closed its doors.
Owners Sharyn and Glen Joynson, who grew up in Howard, moved away and returned to the region to make their restaurant dream a reality in Maryborough last year, have told their customers they are devastated.
They had only recently narrowly missed being flooded by the rising Mary River.
Mark Blackberry, owner of The Vinyard and Coast Restaurant and Bar in Hervey Bay told the Chronicle of the hard decision he'd had to make this week.
He said all staff had been stood down in Qantas fashion in the hope they could return to their jobs as soon as the Esplanade restaurants reopened.
Renovations will now be brought forward at Torquay's Coast which is being revamped into a new-look restaurant.
The Vinyard at Urangan, which was recently relaunched after undergoing renovations will "come back to life quickly" when dining-in bans ease.
Mr Blackberry said there would no doubt be "a lot of carnage out there" and some businesses would not survive.
"I think the big thing once (the virus) is at manageable levels is that locals reinvest in supporting local businesses again whether that be restaurants, local pubs, coffee shops etc.
"There's nothing we can do about what's happened - this is the world we live in but you need local businesses supporting local businesses," he said.