VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. – Over at Michaels on the Beach near the Daytona Beach Pier, the doors are back open for business - and workers like Jonahlee McKinley are glad to be back at work.
"Yes most definitely," said McKinley. "Not only that we need to socialize."
McKinley confirms she was out of work for four weeks because of the state-imposed safer-at-home order.
But workers at other shops may be out of work a little longer since closed signs still pepper T-shirt shops and eateries all around the beach line.
"I think its personal preference you know," said McKinley. "Some people may not be ready to step out there."
At Daytona Beach and Daytona Beach Shores, several hotels that were closed during the stay at home order are now back open and are both ready and anxious for business.
Perry’s Ocean Edge Resort opened over the weekend, and the guest services manager said the phone has been ringing off the hook.
“It was unexpectedly crazy,” said Michelle Grabusky, the guest services manager at the hotel. "Because the beaches got open not just for exercise but leisure- and people went crazy! The phones never stopped.
Grabusky says she’s glad for the uptick in business and glad she gets to be back at work, after being furloughed for four weeks.
"Oh yeah, we are ready - we're back in business," said Grabusky.
Guests checking into the beachside resort are noticing some changes to the front desk - from the Plexiglas separators to the credit card check-ins, the hand sanitizers at multiple check-in stations spaced 6 feet apart.
Grabusky confirms they are taking extra cleaning measures in the rooms, all to help both workers and guests feel a little safer and try to prevent the possible spread of COVID-19.
She confirms while there are no limits placed on hotels on how many people can check-in, she says social distancing is being encouraged by the pool.
Guests say they're okay with that.
"I feel great about it," said Chris Vinson, who is visiting from Apopka. "Everybody's doing what they're supposed to do, we're staying apart from each other. We need the sun!"
But sadly the free donuts the hotel used to give out are gone.
At least for now.
"They'll be back," said Bob Davis with the Lodging and Hospitality Association of Volusia County. "All the amenities will come back, plus more. "
Davis says not all the hotels in Volusia county closed during the Governor’s 30-day stay-at-home order, but he says for the ones that did - it was a disaster financially. He says now hotels and motels everywhere will start doing everything they can to bring business back in.
Many major hotel chains including the Wyndham, Best Western, Hilton, and Hyatt hotel chains recently announced new cleaning programs amid the coronavirus pandemic - and others are following the lead.
"The industry itself has started an unbelievable ascent into keeping the hotel rooms clean," said Davis. "The elevators having hand cards you can press, the Plexiglas separators. The cleanliness as we know it will be triple."
Davis says with the cruise industry on pause indefinitely, he hopes Floridians will still choose to take a stay-cation at one of the many hotels Volusia County has to offer. And help support all the local businesses in the area during their stay.
Davis confirms more hotels and restaurants and businesses are expected to open up through the week and into the weekend. As for AirBNB rentals, Davis confirms those are currently still closed and not part of Phase 1 reopen plan for Florida.