Cafe Deluxe restaurants in Tysons, Virginia, and Bethesda, Maryland, have closed, early victims of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Both leases were set to expire in April, with no plans to renew, but owner Geoff Tracy says the dramatic drop in business at both locations — sales down nearly 50% in the most recent week — sped up the restaurants closures.
“In my 20 years of owning restaurants, we have survived 9/11, the dot.com bubble, the D.C. sniper, the 2008 meltdown, H1N1, the demolition of a building and more weather-related disasters than I can recall. I can say this is far and away the greatest challenge restaurants have ever faced,” Tracy told WTOP.
Tracy’s other restaurants — including Cafe Deluxe at 2201 M Street NW, Tortilla Coast on Capitol Hill and restaurant Lia in Chevy Chase — remain open.
The Cafe Deluxe location in Cathedral Heights closed in 2019.
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Tracy is also sounding the alarm for the local restaurant industry.
“The economic snowball caused by COVID-19 has just begun. I anticipate a collapse of the restaurant industry in the upcoming weeks unless something extraordinary and very positive occurs,” he said.
“Most operators simply do not have the resources to weather this change in sales.”
Chef Geoff’s Restaurant Group and Clover Restaurant group merged in 2018 and operate under “Chef Geoff’s Deluxe Hospitality.”