Chicago Opens Its Doors to Group Business

Chicago Opens Its Doors to Group Business

By:Marlene Goldman
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As Chicago transitions into its new status as fully reopened, businesses are now free to welcome guests at full capacity, including hotels, convention centers, restaurants and bars.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot moved up the city's planned reopening by three weeks to coincide with the full reopening of the entire state on June 11. Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced earlier this month that Illinois was ready to enter Phase 5, removing capacity restrictions that had been in place due to COVID. According to the governor, entry into Phase 5 means "businesses, large-scale events, conventions, amusement parks, and seated-spectator venues, among others, will be able to operate at full capacity for the first time since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic."

In Phase 5, large gatherings of all sizes can resume across all industry settings, and Phase 5 removes requirements that businesses institute mandatory social distancing in seated venues as well as daily health screenings of employees and visitors.

"It is so important for our momentum as Chicago is such an iconic meetings destination for our industry," said ALHI CEO & President Michael Dominguez. "The destination has so much history, culture and culinary experiences to offer to our meetings industry."

Though businesses in Chicago and the rest of the state can now lift capacity limits, they can also choose to impose their own restrictions such as requiring masks or proof of vaccination status beyond the June 11 reopening.

Masks will still be required for vaccinated people on public transit, and in airports, schools and hospitals or in most public settings for those who are unvaccinated.

Chicago is the largest U.S. city to fully reopen by the June 11 date. New York City's mayor has projected July 1 for a full reopening, while that goal is June 15 for Los Angeles as well as the rest of California.

 

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