PHOTOS: Victoria businesses open as province enters phase two of COVID-19 response

Nomi Atif, owner of Nomi Salon on Blanshard Street cuts Michael O’Connor’s hair on May 19. O’Connor said he was waiting to receive a haircut for a long time. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)Nomi Atif, owner of Nomi Salon on Blanshard Street cuts Michael O’Connor’s hair on May 19. O’Connor said he was waiting to receive a haircut for a long time. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Logan Gray, owner of Discovery Coffee, tapes lines and arrows on the sidewalk outside of the Blanshard Street location. The store is set to open on May 20. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)Logan Gray, owner of Discovery Coffee, tapes lines and arrows on the sidewalk outside of the Blanshard Street location. The store is set to open on May 20. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Logan Gray, owner of Discovery Coffee, said the Blanshard Street location will open on May 20. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)Logan Gray, owner of Discovery Coffee, said the Blanshard Street location will open on May 20. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Tacofino on Fort Street had a lineup outside as patrons waited for their food orders. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)Tacofino on Fort Street had a lineup outside as patrons waited for their food orders. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Salons and personal services have been able to open again as the province enters phase two of its COVID-19 response. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)Salons and personal services have been able to open again as the province enters phase two of its COVID-19 response. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Natasha Crawford, owner of Brown’s The Florist, said their locations have managed to find a way to stay open during COVID-19 and have been busy. She said she has noticed more people using flowers to reach out and connect to others. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)Natasha Crawford, owner of Brown’s The Florist, said their locations have managed to find a way to stay open during COVID-19 and have been busy. She said she has noticed more people using flowers to reach out and connect to others. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
A customer stops to pick up a book at Russel Books on Fort Street. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)A customer stops to pick up a book at Russel Books on Fort Street. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
An employee at Crust Bakery on Fort Street goes to grab a pastry from the window display. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)An employee at Crust Bakery on Fort Street goes to grab a pastry from the window display. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
PHOTOS: Victoria businesses open as province enters phase two of COVID-19 response
Shoppers enter and leave The Bay Centre in Victoria. The shopping centre opened to the public again on May 19. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)Shoppers enter and leave The Bay Centre in Victoria. The shopping centre opened to the public again on May 19. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Signs reminding customers about health guidelines stand in the entrance of The Bay Centre. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)Signs reminding customers about health guidelines stand in the entrance of The Bay Centre. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Chiropractors and other health services are opening their doors again. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)Chiropractors and other health services are opening their doors again. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Retail stores such as Folk on Fort Street in Victoria are finding ways to open again to customers. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)Retail stores such as Folk on Fort Street in Victoria are finding ways to open again to customers. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Salt on Fort Street in Victoria will be opening its doors on May 22. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)Salt on Fort Street in Victoria will be opening its doors on May 22. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Pedestrians were out and about, stopping into stores on May 19. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)Pedestrians were out and about, stopping into stores on May 19. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)

As B.C. enters phase two of the province’s plan to restart, businesses have begun to open and welcome community members back with some precautions.

Barber shops and salon doors in downtown Victoria were open with eager clients receiving hair cuts and other services on Tuesday afternoon.

At Nomi Salon, Michael O’Connor received a haircut from owner, Nomi Atif.

“I’ve been waiting for this for a long time,” O’Connor said.

Shoppers were also welcomed back into the Bay Centre, where select businesses began operating on May 19. Customers were seen entering and exiting the sliding glass doors and walking past signs that outlined customer health guidelines.

Natasha Crawford, owner of Brown’s The Florist, said the shop didn’t close but she has been seeing more kindness among customers. She said Mother’s Day deliveries, while challenging to fill, were accompanied by heartfelt messages.

READ ALSO: COVID-19: Here’s a phase-by-phase look at how B.C. hopes to re-open parts of society

“People are using flowers to connect,” Crawford said.

Tuesday the downtown Victoria store bustled with staff cleaning flowers to keep up with the demand.

Warm weather brought many people out and about on the streets as well, as pedestrians walked by stores to note new opening hours and signs that told customers businesses are back.

The province’s second phase in the COVID-19 response involves re-opening salons and personal services, museums, art galleries, libraries, recreation spaces, offices and dine-in options at restaurants that can allow for physical distancing.

With files from Ashley Wadhwani

READ ALSO: Greater Victoria businesses set to reopen Tuesday, heading into phase two of B.C. restart plan

shalu.mehta@blackpress.ca


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