Drinkers who refuse to wait a minute longer than necessary for their first post-lockdown beer can get an early start if they know where to go.
Only a select few venues will get the lion’s share of patronage when the doors fly open at 12.01am across NSW due to licensing laws that prevent pubs from operating after midnight.
The 24-hour Cheers Bar on George Street in Sydney’s CBD will open the moment the government allows it, but only for vaccinated patrons.
After a long, drawn out, 15-week lockdown, management was determined to return to business as usual as soon as possible.
‘Making up for lost time,’ one said.
Ten minutes down the road, the City Tattersalls Club will also throw open its doors and from 12.01am.
City Tattersalls Club in Sydney’s CBD will throw open their doors and from 12.01am after 15 weeks of closures
Polishing the glasses is an important job to help get everything ready in time for the reopening of businesses across NSW
Hotel Manager Alex Marton prepares a bar area ahead of receiving patrons at the Kings Cross Hotel from Monday
Sydney has been effectively closed for business for 106 days while trying to manage a devastating outbreak of the Covid Delta variant.
To celebrate, management at City Tattersalls will offer 49 per cent off all drinks for the rest of October.
Scruffy Murphy’s in Goulburn Street also announced its intention to open at 12.01am, adding staff will be checking vaccination status upon entry.
North of the Spit Bridge, staff at Dee Why RSL are counting down until the clock strikes midnight.
The main bar will stay open for as long as patrons are still buying on Sunday night, with security and a manager manning the door checking vaccines.
‘We’ve got a fair bit of interest,’ the on-duty manager told Daily Mail Australia. ‘We’re hoping we’ll get some customers.’
Easts in Bondi Junction was one of the first venues to declare it would be open from midnight.
‘Be the first to see your mates and have a cold beer! We can’t wait to see you again,’ it wrote in a social media post.
The 24-hour Cheers Bar on George Street in Sydney will open the moment the government allows it, but only for double vaccinated patrons
Workers begin reopening preparation by setting up outdoor seating at Crown Sydney
Easts in Bondi Junction were one of the first venues to declare they’d be open from midnight. ‘Be the first to see your mates and have a cold beer! We can’t wait to see you again,’ a spokesman wrote in a social media post
Where to find a drink at 12.01am on Freedom Day
City Tattersalls Club in Sydney CBD
Scruffy Murphy’s in Sydney CBD
Cheers Bar in Sydney CBD
Easts Bondi Junction
Dee Why RSL
Steelers pub in Wollongong
Toongabbie Sports Club in western Sydney
Further west in Toongabbie, in what was once listed as a Coivd hotspot, the sports club will also be reopening for hard done by locals.
Western Sydney residents have endured even tougher restrictions than those experienced in the east or CBD due to higher and more centralised case numbers.
‘Strange times call for strange things to happen so we are opening at midnight (well 12.01AM to be more exact),’ a pub worker said.
He said that after four months of being entirely dependent on government support, staff were itching to get back to work and see ‘all the smiling faces’ of their community once again.
The Steelers pub in Wollongong will offer happy hour drinks from 12.01am to 3am on Monday.
Patrons will be able to buy $3.90 schooners and $4 wines to celebrate the venue reopening after an extended 15-week lockdown.
It’s good news for long-suffering businesses, but there are many more throughout the city and surrounds that will have to wait until tomorrow to open.
Staff making sure they are fully stocked with alcohol and food as they prepare for reopening in Sydney on Monday
A positive message will help to welcome hungry and thirsty customers back after lockdown eases in NSW on Monday
A spokesman for the Burdekin on Oxford Street told Daily Mail Australia licensing arrangements meant many pubs would have to wait a little longer to see their customers again.
‘We would love to open but unfortunately on Sundays, our licence only allows us to open until midnight,’ he said.
‘We’ll be here tomorrow and open as soon as we can.’
Daily Mail Australia visited some of the city’s best known venues along Darling Harbour and Barangaroo before the state’s reopening on Monday, after hitting 70 per cent vaccinated this week.
Only fully vaccinated people will be allowed within hospitality venues from Monday.
North of the Spit Bridge, staff at Dee Why RSL are counting down until the clock strikes midnight. The main bar will remain open for as long as patrons wish on Sunday night, with security and a manager manning the door checking vaccines
Jessie White says reopening after lockdown is like starting all over again. ‘We’re not going to go back to 100 per cent capacity until we see the international borders reopen’
NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet (right) rolls a beer keg during a tour of the Marsden Brewhouse in Marsden Park. Mr Perrottet urged people to treat young bar and wait staff as though they’re ‘your neighbour’s son or daughter’ and to be particularly patient as they work through checking patron’s vaccination status
‘(Lockdown has) been a very confronting time as a business owner,’ Michelle Grand-Milkovic, the co-owner of Love Fish at Barangaroo, said.
She said they are ‘incredibly excited to be opening, but we’re also facing quite a few challenges’.
Prime among those challenges is finding enough staff to cope with the number of bookings they have.
‘Unfortunately, we’re probably about 10 staff short of where we need to be. It’s an industry-wide huge shortage,’ Ms Milkovic said.
‘It’s a combination of we don’t have the international tourists (to fill positions), a lot of people have left the hospitality industry.
‘We do have some staff members that don’t want to get vaccinated, so they are not really in a position to be able to come back to work.’
Scruffy Murphy’s in Goulburn Street has also announced their intention to open at 12.01am, adding staff will be checking vaccination status upon entry
Apprentice hairdresser Jess Robertson prepares stock at the Wild Life Hair Sogo salon in Surry Hills
Pictured: Staff preparing cafe seating inside the Queen Victoria Building ahead of the reopening
Down the street at Bungalow 8, licensee Jeremy Fraser said he and his staff were ‘ecstatic’ at the prospect of reopening.
‘We’ve been preparing for this for months and months, counting down the days and the hours. We’re ready to roll and open and the taps will be flowing on Monday.’
Mr Fraser then used a phrase we’ve all heard a lot of in the past two years: ‘We have a new normal from now on.
‘We’re trying to work out what will happen over the next 12 months, but we’ve got a good roadmap now which gives us a bit of clarity.’
He is heartened by the number of bookings his business is getting, saying reservations are ‘the most insane [he’s] ever seen’.
‘I’ve worked in hospitality for 15 years and I’ve never seen anything like it. For at least two weeks straight, we’re full up most nights of the week,’ he said.
On Sunday, newly appointed Premier Dominic Perrottet said the end of lockdown had been a long time coming, but reminded Sydneysiders that we’re still in the midst of a pandemic.
‘This challenge is not over. It is not over by a long way,’ he warned.
NSW Health announced 477 new Covid cases and six deaths overnight. Five of the victims were not vaccinated while the other had received one dose
Premier Dominic Perrottet will reap the rewards of his predecessor’s Covid policies as he celebrates the end of lockdown in NSW
Sydneysiders start the party early
But picnic hotspots turned into boozy moshpits in Sydney’s eastern suburbs and northern beaches overnight as residents risked fines to celebrate Freedom Day early.
Hundreds gathered by the water at Bondi and Manly on Saturday night to party ahead of Covid restrictions being relaxed on Monday for double-jabbed residents.
Massive crowds flocked to ‘The Office’ in Manly – a popular waterfront spot near the wharf – where music was blasting and an impromptu dance floor was set up.
Hundreds congregated in Bondi Beach on Saturday (pictured) before they were dispersed by police
Revellers were filmed crammed together and maskless as they belted out ABBA songs with drinks in tow while some were reported urinating.
Similar scenes occurred at Bondi beach, after police were forced to disperse huge crowds who began congregating throughout the day.
A number of move-on directions were given to residents while no fines were issued despite public health orders being in place until Monday.
Under Covid-19 restrictions only groups of five fully-vaccinated adults are allowed to gather outdoors until the state’s stay-at-home orders are eased on October 11.
Hundreds of revellers have flocked to Manly beach on Saturday (pictured) just days shy of the state’s scheduled Freedom Day
Mr Perrottet thanked residents for their efforts during the 106 days of restrictions they’ve endured, adding that NSW has ‘led the way out of lockdown’.
‘Yesterday we hit 90 per cent first dose… NSW is leading our country out of this pandemic,’ Mr Perrottet said.
‘Not just leading our country, but leading the world… And that’s been the secret to our success.’
There was also a plea for kindness and patience, particularly with young staff and servers as businesses slowly begin to reopen.
Mr Perrottet urged people to treat young bar and wait staff as though they’re ‘your neighbour’s son or daughter’ and to be particularly patient as they work through checking patron’s vaccination status.
Signage at an entertainment venue at Barangaroo in Sydney, Sunday, October 10. Within hours, these venues will be crawling with patrons
Sweeping up in all the nooks and crannies to make sure everything is spotless before NSW starts to open up again
Victor Dominello helped to create the vaccine passport needed to enter premises in his role as Minister for Digital and Customer Service.
On Sunday, he revealed the passport was not yet ready to launch but said there are three ways for people to prove their vaccination status from Monday.
- A hard-copy printout of your vaccination certificate from Services Australia
- A digital certificate on the the Express Plus Medicare app
- A digital certificate in your Apple or Google digital wallet
Pub baron Craig Laundy, a former politician whose family owns one of the biggest hotel and restaurants businesses in NSW, suggested people save their digital vaccination certificate as the background on their phones.
‘There is one practical thing you can do, get to your vaccination status, take a screenshot and make it your wallpaper on your phone,’ he suggested on Sunday.
‘It’ll be a far quicker process for us to get you in and seated.’
Mr Laundy thanked state leaders for working swiftly to reopen venues, adding that in his family business alone there will be thousands of employees returning to work on Monday after four months of unemployment.
‘It’s been a tough 100 days of blood, sweat and no beers,’ Mr Perrottet said. ‘But tomorrow will be a great day.’
Further west in Toongabbie, in a western Sydney local government area of concern, the sports club will also be reopening for hard done by locals
Revised roadmap to freedom: All the changes for fully vaccinated NSW residents after hitting 70% jab target
Former NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian’s freedom plan will kick off after the state hits 70 per cent of adults double dosed
Gatherings in the home and public spaces
· Up to ten visitors will be allowed in a home where all adults are vaccinated (not including children 12 and under).
· Up to 30 people can gather in outdoor settings.
Venues including hospitality, retail stores and gyms
· Hospitality venues can reopen subject to one person per 4sqm inside and one person per 2sqm outside, with standing while drinking permitted outside.
· Retail stores can reopen under the one person per 4sqm rule (unvaccinated people will continue to only be able to access critical retail).
· Personal services such as hairdressers and nail salons can open with one person per 4sqm, capped at five clients per premises.
· Gyms and indoor recreation facilities can open under the one person per 4sqm rule and can offer classes for up to 20 people.
· Sporting facilities including swimming pools can reopen.
Stadiums, theatres and major outdoor recreation facilities
· Major recreation outdoor facilities including stadiums, racecourses, theme parks and zoos can reopen with one person per 4sqm, capped at 5,000 people.
· Up to 500 people can attend ticketed and seated outdoor events.
· Indoor entertainment and information facilities including cinemas, theatres, music halls, museums and galleries can reopen with one person per 4sqm or 75 per cent fixed seated capacity.
· Indoor swimming pools open for lessons, squad training, lap swimming and rehab activities only
Weddings, funerals and places of worship
· Up to 100 guests can attend weddings, with dancing permitted and eating and drinking only while seated.
· Up to 100 guests can attend funerals, with eating and drinking while seated.
· For those not fully vaccinated lower caps of 5 and ten apply for weddings and funerals.
· Churches and places of worship to open subject to one person per 4sqm rule, with performers exempt from ban on singing.
· Ten person cap on choirs in places of worship and at religious services, with all performers to be fully vaccinated
· The 5km radius will be dropped but Sydneysiders can only travel within greater Sydney – including the Central Coast, Wollongong and Blue Mountains.
· Caravan parks and camping grounds can open.
· Carpooling will be permitted.
Non-vaccinated young people aged under 16 will be able to access all outdoor settings but will only be able to visit indoor venues with members of their household.
Employers must continue to allow employees to work from home if the employee is able to do so.
There will be revised guidance on isolation for close and casual contacts who are fully vaccinated, with details to be provided closer to the reopening date.
· Masks will remain mandatory for all indoor public venues, including public transport, front-of-house hospitality, retail and business premises, on planes and at airports.
· Only hospitality staff will be required to wear a mask when outdoors.
· Children aged under 12 will not need to wear a mask indoors.