Society 07/05/2021

Bars open until midnight in Madrid after the state of alarm with no restrictions on gatherings

Ayuso minimises restrictions because she says there are no legal guarantees

2 min
The dome of Ciutadans on a terrace during the day of reflection before 4-M. Begoña Villacís, the number two of the City Council of Madrid, is the one who has devised the extension of terraces.

MadridNo curfew, no limitations on meetings in public spaces during the night, no maximum number of people per table in the hospitality industry (only a "recommendation" of four inside and six outdoors) and an extra hour of opening time for bars and restaurants, from 23 h to 00 h. This is how the restrictions will change in the Community of Madrid once the state of alarm is lifted. After her landslide victory in the elections on May 4, the president of Madrid, Isabel Diaz Ayuso, continues with her policy of maintaining minimum restrictions in the Spanish capital. While maintaining the perimeter confinement of different basic health areas - those with an incidence of more than 250 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the last 14 days - despite not having proven to be effective, Madrid will continue without perimeter confinement as before, with the novelty that Castilla y León and Castilla-La Mancha are not expected to request it. Therefore, for the first time in six months - except for the Christmas break - it will be possible to move freely through neighbouring regions.

Madrid's Health Minister, Enrique Ruiz Escudero, announced today restrictions starting on Sunday. Some of the measures imposed so far are maintained but without the state of alarm they will be only "recommendations". Escudero has insisted that there will be no limitation of mobility at night or limits in gatherings in public or private because, in his opinion, "there is no legal margin to impose restrictive measures". In fact, the Moncloa also insisted that without a state of alarm there can be no nighttime curfew, because it means in practice a generalisation of home confinement and a restriction of fundamental rights, but the High Court of Justice of the Balearic Islands validated a nighttime curfew on Thursday afternoon until May 23.

Catalonia has sought to impose neither the curfew nor travel restrictions, like Madrid, but it has approved a six-person limit on gatherings. In the case of Madrid, Ayuso has not even considered it and people will be allowed to meet outdoors at any time of day or night. However, the ban on consuming alcohol in public spaces outside bars is maintained. "We recommend," Ecudero specified, "that group participation in any private or public activity is limited to six people except in the case of cohabitants and that in homes the groups are limited to cohabitants".

As for the hotel and catering trade, closing time will be extended by one hour, but from 11 p.m. onwards no new diners will be admitted so as not to further delay closing time. In addition, bars will remain closed and the capacity in shopping centres will be 75%. In Madrid it has been possible to dine until 11pm since mid-February, when the restrictions of the second wave that forced bars and restaurants to close at 9pm for about a month were lifted. In Catalonia, on the other hand, Sunday will be the first time in months bars will be allowed to serve dinners, as their closing time has been put back until 11pm.

Theatre, concerts and cinema until midnight

Cultural events such as theatres, cinemas and auditoriums will be able to close at midnight, but they will not be allowed to start performances or shows after 11pm. Capacity will be 75% and it will only be necessary to leave one free seat between groups. In sports facilities the closing time will be 11pm and indoors capacity will be reduced by half.