Say goodbye to lounge restrictions in B.C. restaurants

TMTVNEWS.COM – Small change with big impacts for BC restaurants: Restaurants in BC no longer have to provide a separate lounge area for customers who want to enjoy a cocktail. They can now open up more space to be used to seat customers who are dining or enjoying a cocktail – this is a winning change: https://news.gov.bc.ca/09823shown here: Luke’s Corner Bar and Kitchen, BC Restaurant & Foodservices Association

As part of the ongoing effort to cut red tape for small businesses in British Columbia, restaurants no longer have to provide a separate lounge area for customers who want to enjoy a cocktail.

This latest change builds on a complementary Liquor Policy Review update that happened last year, allowing customers to order a drink at a restaurant without feeling pressured to order food. In the past, restaurants wanting to offer their customers a drink without having to serve them a meal had to have an isolated lounge area.

Creating flexibility for restaurants will help to remove the unnecessary burden for businesses in B.C., while understanding that restaurants will still need to ensure that their primary purpose is the service of food.

Music and comedy performances now will come easier, too, thanks to new relaxed entertainment rules. Restaurants are no longer required to apply for a permit to host entertainment, such as a guitar player or comedian, as long as patrons are not participating in the show.

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Coralee Oakes, Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction and Minister Responsible for the Liquor Distribution Branch –

“This is a good example of government listening to industry, and saying ‘yes.’ This is a piece of red tape that really doesn’t do B.C. businesses any good. We are listening, and we are working to ensure that restaurants can focus on offering their customers a high level of service without this unnecessary burden. The move will save restaurants time and money that can be better focused on promoting their establishment and growing B.C.’s economy.”

John Yap, Parliamentary Secretary for Liquor Reform –

“We are making small changes with big impacts, as we update our liquor policies based on the feedback I received from industry and British Columbians during the Liquor Policy Review. Today is a great example of the work we are doing to improve processes for restaurants and create more convenience for consumers.”

Ian Tostenson, president and CEO, BC Restaurant and Foodservices Association –

“This is a small change that will make a big impact – by removing the licensing requirements and fees the restaurant can open up more physical space that can be used to seat customers who are dining or enjoying a cocktail – this is a winning change. Removing red tape for B.C. restaurants gives them more time to create world-class food and provide outstanding customer service.”

Mark Roberts, owner, Luke’s Corner Bar and Kitchen –

“As a restaurant owner, this change makes it easier to cater to my customers’ needs and allows them more flexibility. Not only will my customers benefit, but I benefit from an easier process and less red tape. This change also eliminates the need for my staff to locate limited lounge seating for a customer during busy times, making their jobs easier and more streamlined.”

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