The Pope’s Visit was a Financial Disaster for Restaurants

pope-francisPope Francis has visited the Stateside, and generated an influx of people to the states. While the city had built up that the Pope’s visit would potentially cause an economic boon, contrary to belief, the restaurant industry saw a decrease in customers. Restaurant owners were excited about the millions of hungry pilgrims that would be drawn to the city. In Philadelphia, organizers predicted Pope Francis’s stay would generate nearly half a billion dollars for the city.

In New York City, David Chang was among the first to express his disappointment as he tweets “Love the new pope but he’s a restaurant cooler on par with the super bowl and oscar’s.” While in Philadelphia, chefs around own started complaining Saturday about the lack of customers, and faulting the city’s overeager security apparatus. Stephen Starr, owner of about 20 Philly restaurants, said that things were “worse than Hurricane Sandy, the city scared all of our customers away… What should have been a feeling of family and community was turned into a police and military operation.” Moreover, Marc Vetri’s famous Vetri was celebrating their anniversary with special half-off prix fixe, but did not acquire as many customers with loads of reservations open. Verti, also, complained about the myriad gates and road closures that “hurt small and large business alike” and eventually closed. Some restaurants didn’t even bother to open on Sunday.

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