Ivar’s Closes Seafood Restaurants In Seattle Until Spring Due To COVID-19

Ivar’s will be closing two of its full-service restaurants, Acres of Clams and Salmon House, from September 28 until next spring. The fish bars will remain open.

SEATTLE – Ivar’s announced Thursday that it is closing two of its full-service restaurants in Seattle due to financial hardship caused by the coronavirus pandemic. It’s another big blow to Seattle’s waterfront which is already struggling due to the closures of Pier 57 and 58.

Ivar’s will close Acres of Clams on Pier 54 and Salmon House on Lake Union on September 28. The fish bars on the sidewalks in front of each restaurant will remain open.

According to a statement from Ivar’s Bob Donegan, the pandemic and restrictions on indoor dining have caused a significant drop in customer numbers for the company, which has been part of the Seattle waterfront since 1938.

“Without cruise lines, conventions, tourists, banquets, Sounders, Seahawks and Mariner fans, and downtown office workers, few people eat at our full-service restaurants. We are concerned that when the weather changes and the rains return, we will lose meals outside and we will run out of customers, ”said Donegan.

Donegan said he hopes “sufficient progress” is made in the fight against COVID-19 so that he can consider reopening both restaurants in spring 2021.

“This is the start of a lot more of this news unfortunately,” said Steve Hooper, board member for the Seattle Restaurant Alliance.

“I unfortunately believe there will be a very strong wave of closures over the next 60 to 90 days, unfortunately,” he said.

The closure of Acres of Clams is another blow to Seattle’s waterfront. Last week, the city closed Pier 57 as a safety measure following the partial collapse of Pier 58, which is undergoing renovations.

Shuttering Pier 57 has forced several other waterfront tourist destinations, such as The Crab Pot and The Great Wheel, to close for now until experts can ensure the safety of the pier. City officials have not indicated when Pier 57 or these businesses may reopen.

Donegan said Ivar’s full-service restaurant and fish bar in Mukilteo, as well as the company’s 19 seafood bars in the Puget Sound area, will remain open.

He said sales of Ivar’s prepackaged chowder, which is sold in thousands of US stores, have “exploded” since the start of the pandemic.

“This will get the business through the winter and allow us to reopen in the spring,” Donegan said, “we hope.”

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