How the Coronavirus Is Impacting Miami Life

Since the World Health Organization declared COVID-19, or coronavirus, to be a pandemic, Miami has taken serious precautions. Store shelves look eerily similar to what we see when there’s a hurricane—except instead of water being sold out, it’s nearly impossible to find disinfectants or paper goods. It can be anxiety-inducing, but what’s inspiring is how the city is banding together in an attempt to keep COVID-19 in check. Here’s a look at what’s changing, the current best practices for avoiding exposure to the virus and some of the creative ways local restaurants are feeding people right now.

What to Stock Up on for the Coronavirus

el bagel sq
Courtesy of El Bagel

Some Of Our Favorite Events Have Been Postponed (or Canceled)

Miami Open, Ultra Music Festival, Jazz in the Gardens—we will miss you. However, to understand why some of the events we’ve been looking forward to for months are either postponed or canceled, it’s worth discussing the severity of the virus first.

Symptoms include fever, dry cough and breathing problems, affecting thousands across the world and sometimes resulting in death. It’s still not certain exactly how the virus spreads, but it’s worth noting that washing hands, avoiding large crowds, staying away from those who are sick and practicing social distancing (at least six feet!) have proved to be semi-successful in slowing the outbreak, according to the WHO.

With that being said, Miami mayor Carlos Giménez has declared a local state of emergency and ordered the cancellation of all mass gatherings. During a press conference on Tuesday, March 17, he and Miami Beach mayor Dan Gelber announced that movie theaters, arcades, bowling alleys, gyms and concert venues with a capacity of more than ten people would be shut down for the next 30 days. Restaurants and bars would be limited to takeout and delivery services.

That may sound grim, but it’s a necessary measure to help contain the virus. And fear not: Some of our favorite spots have come up with alternate ways to serve customers. (For now, at least.) El Bagel has launched online ordering, so you can pick up a nova lox bagel instead of dining in. Eating House is selling meal kits for their best-selling items, also available for pickup, and Zak Stern of Zak the Baker has implemented a pickup-only model as well for his award-winning dough and pastries.

Pro tip: If you’re thinking of picking up food, call ahead to ensure the restaurant is still operational. Currently closed establishments include Michelle Bernstein’s Café La Trova, Concrete Beach Brewery and Mignonette, among others.

lighthouse in mia sq
Photo courtesy Sarah / Flickr

How To Stay Healthy (as Best You Can)

This one’s a biggie: There’s no foolproof way to steer clear of COVID-19 (at least not yet). As doctors and researchers around the world scramble to test possible vaccines and containment methods, there’s still no proven solution that has shown to provide quick and reliable relief.

For now, various Miami destinations—including restaurants, hotels, gyms and even beaches—are implementing reduced hours, temporary closures and full-on shutdowns to encourage social distancing. With such beautiful weather, it can be hard to stay indoors, but consider this time a chance to turn your home into a self-care haven, finally master winged eyeliner, catch up on the Netflix shows everyone keeps recommending you watch and maybe try an at-home core workout.

And if you really miss catching the sunset, you can always check in via live stream.

clarissa buch
Clarissa Buch Zilberman

Miami Editor

Clarissa Buch Zilberman is a writer and editor based in Miami. Focused on food, lifestyle, and travel, her work has appeared in Food & Wine, Travel + Leisure, Bon Appétit, and...
read full bio