Wildwood, New Jersey hotels, motels opening this week, but operating at low capacity

WILDWOOD, New Jersey (WPVI) -- While hotels, motels and short terms rental properties opened on May 26 in Wildwood, New Jersey, many owners say they're still not getting the business they're used to during this time of the year. Their businesses are open for 60% capacity, yet many are only getting around 40%.

"If we want the beaches in Wildwood to be here for next year, we need to be here to support them now," said Tara Murphy, visiting from York, Pennsylvania.

Murphy is staying at a hotel where she said they are taking proper precautions to keep her safe by leaving towels and bedsheets outside her hotel door.

John Donio, the owner of the Daytona Inn and Suites and the president of the Wildwood Business Improvement District said on Wednesday, the business district presented a plan to city commissioners to responsibly open, given most business owners only have around 90 days to make their money.

"It's critical for us to get them options to get open, on the sidewalk, closing streets down to put tables and chairs and umbrellas out there for service at night," said Donio.

In more intimate settings, like the Candlelight Inn Bed and Breakfast, which is geared towards couples, safety measures have been taken to keep guests apart.

The owners, Wanda O'Brien and her husband said they haven't hired any additional employees for the summer because they aren't sure how much business they'll get. Since it's just the two of them working this summer, O'Brien said she's taking as many safety precautions as possible to keep herself and her guests safe.

"If one of us gets sick, that's the end of our business," said O'Brien.

Some safety precautions she's taken include, spreading out plates for breakfast so only two couples can sit at a table at a time, as well as having hand sanitizer in common rooms.

"What I'm hoping people understand is the ocean is still open, no matter what happens at the shore, and that's really the draw," said O'Brien.

Wildwood Mayor Pete Byron said this time of the year normally isn't great for business anyway.

"This is a slow time of the year, I don't want people to get nervous," said Byron. "Around the Fourth of July, I think you're going to see more and more businesses open."
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