On Wednesday, June 11, CityWalk Hollywood opened to the public for the first time in nearly three months as the first sign of Universal Studios Hollywood’s reopening efforts. A number of third-party venues, including Voodoo Doughnut, Buca di Beppo, Johnny Rockets, Starbucks, and Blaze Pizza among others, returned to daily operations from 12:00PM-8:00PM, but with modified safety procedures, of course.
Currently, free general parking is available in the Jurassic Parking structure for all guests, with staggered parking spots available to best ensure social distancing between each vehicle. After parking, all guests head to the first floor of the structure for a rapid, touch-free temperature check before proceeding into CityWalk. Guests must have a temperature below 100.4 degrees to be admitted. Barricades are widely spaced out along the pathway to the temperature check, with many arrows on the ground directing guests exactly where to go as they pass by the many safety signs and listen to the repeating spiel playing in the background. Multiple team members donning masks – as all employees and guests are required to wear at all times – help ensure that the process goes smoothly for all, beckoning those who may be lost or confused in the right direction.
Upon passing the temperature check, all will enter to find many markings on the ground both inside and outside of each venue – including those that are currently closed – showing guests where to wait and stand while maintaining social distancing. Tables are marked with small signs advising guests to limit each to one party, while safety signs, tips, and touch-free hand sanitizer dispensers are abundant throughout the length of the area. A handful of team members in white vests frequently wash all surfaces, especially the hand rests on each escalator to further sanitize.
Amidst all of the safety measures taken, the vast majority of guests practicing social distancing between other parties without question, and the welcoming yet carefully cautious general attitude among team members, we felt very safe at all times and had a most enjoyable time at CityWalk. Below, we’ll share a few photos taken during our visit, including a brief construction update on IT’SUGAR and the transformation of Tony Roma’s into NBC Sports Grill & Brew, and Hard Rock Café into Toothsome’s Chocolate Emporium:
Construction work on the renovation of the entrance to IT’SUGAR appears to be wrapping up, as most walls have come down and the covering over the once temporary entrance has been removed.
A new big screen has been installed above the future location of NBC Sports Grill & Brew since our most recent visit, in addition to a number of lights lining the top of the building. Construction walls surrounding the site remain otherwise the same as crews continue to develop both the inside and outside of the building.
The future location of Toothsome’s Chocolate Emporium continues its transformation, as palm trees around the area have been removed and the exterior appears to be getting repainted in certain portions. Some Hard Rock Café signage remains on the side of the building, though we assume that most work is being on the inside currently.
From all of us at Inside Universal, we hope you are doing well, and thank you for following our continuing coverage of Universal Parks and Resorts.