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San Francisco Restaurants Barely Hanging On During Latest COVID-19 Shutdown

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) -- It has been exactly one month since the San Francisco Bay Area's Stay-At-Home order went into effect and as the days mount so does the financial pressures on restaurateurs who are barely hanging on.

Bask restaurant owner Sabrina Thillard decided to temporarily close her tapas restaurant to give her team a break. She's run Bask for the last 9 years.

"I think the unknown is the toughest part, and honestly it's been so long already that we're always contemplating how many more hits are we going to take," said Thillard.

Just one day after deciding to reopen for take-out and delivery services this weekend, vandals shattered the front door, adding yet another burden to the already struggling business.

Thillard says without outdoor dining, business is down 95% compared to this time last year. She had also spent about $10,000 build a parklet, which has sat empty for more than a month.

"We've got some homeless people that are chilling in our parklet. We clean it pretty often, just because we don't know what's going on when we're not there," added Thillard.

It's also been slow going at Zero Zero in SoMa, which is known for its wood-fired, thin-crust pizzas. Chef and owner Bruce Hill said he scaled everything back in December, and laid off three employees.

The large restaurant space can hold up to 150 people.

"It's funny, I found an old receipt from a year ago and it was one party, that was a Moscone convention, and they spent as much with that one party as we make in a week with to-go business," said Hill.

The Bay Area's ICU availability was at 3.4% on Sunday, still well below the goal of 15%.

The streets of San Francisco remained eerily empty this weekend. The balmy, warm weather would have made outdoor dining a popular option had it been allowed.

"We're ready to go as soon as the city feels like it's safe again, and as soon as customers feel like it's safe again," said Hill.

Despite the financial blows, Thillard shares the same optimism.

"I love what I do, and that's taking care of people and having them enjoy an evening out with friends and family, and I'm determined to get that back," she said.

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