Hotpot restaurant in Shaw House suspended for 10 days, fined $2k for letting 20 customers gather

Hai Xian Lao also failed to ensure that group sizes did not exceed five persons.
PHOTO: Singapore Tourism Board

SINGAPORE - A hotpot restaurant has been ordered to suspend operations for 10 days and fined $2,000 for failing to comply with safe distancing measures, the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) said on Saturday (Aug 15).

Hai Xian Lao, which is located on the fourth level of Shaw House in Orchard Road, allowed customers to consume alcohol on its premises after 10.30pm and did not maintain a distance of 1m between groups of customers.

The restaurant also failed to ensure that group sizes did not exceed five persons.

STB said its enforcement officers noticed a group of more than 20 people leaving the restaurant on Friday night, and further checks revealed that the group had been seated in a locked private room within the restaurant.

Restaurant employees were also found to be uncooperative and at times aggressive towards the STB officers, attempting to block entry into the restaurant and private room.

"STB takes a serious view of non-compliance for safety distancing measures by both businesses and members of the public," said STB director for retail and dining Ranita Sundramoorthy.

"While we encourage people to go out and enjoy what our local businesses have to offer, we strongly urge them to do so in a safe and socially responsible manner, so as to minimise the risk of further Covid-19 transmissions within the community."

STB has stepped up checks of tourist areas and establishments since Singapore entered Phase 2 of its exit from the circuit breaker period.

The vast majority of local businesses adhered to the relevant safe distancing measures, the agency said.

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This article was first published in The Straits Times.