What's Open in Downtown Halifax

What's Open in Downtown Halifax


Re-Open. Re-Connect. Re-Energize.

Whatever you call it, Downtown Halifax is open and ready to welcome you back. 

Businesses that were mandated to close during the COVID-19 pandemic, have re-opened including restaurants, cafes, bars and distilleries; hair salons, spas barber shops, and body art establishments; and gyms and yoga studios. 

PLUS, many retail stores that were closed because of the pandemic have re-opened again also. 

It's an exciting time, but it is also a new time for everyone. Downtown Halifax may look a little different and businesses may be operating differently, but the people are the same and have been working hard to welcome you back. Remember to be patient as we all navigate this new reality together. #WeAreAllInThisTogether


Wondering what to expect when you visit stores and restaurants during the re-opening phase? Here is an overview of some of the safety measures that busiensses and organizations are implementing:

As of July 31, 2020, masks will be mandatory in indoor public spaces including retail shops and restaurants. More information here

  • Limited occupancy depending on size of store or business. 
  • In restaurants, tables will be 2M (6ft) apart, menus will either laminated and sanitized between use, single-use prints or available on your mobile device, tables may not be set - staff will bring dishware as needed, and washrooms will have reduced capacity. 
  • Controlled access at entry and exits points. Some businesses may have touchless entrance procedures. 
  • Physical distancing guidelines posted in and outside of stores.
  • Staff most likely will be wearing personal protective equipment (PPEs) including gloves and/or masks/face shields. As of July 31, 2020, masks are mandatory in indoor public spaces including retail shops and restaurants. For restaurants, you can remove your mask once you are seated at your table. More information here
  • Most stores will have hand sanitizer stations set up for staff and customers to use, and may ask that you sanitize your hands upon entering their business. 
  • Many places are asking that customers or clients come alone to shop or to their appointments. 
  • Most restaurants, cafes and stores have installed plexiglass shields/sneeze guards at their counter and cashier stations.
  • All establishments have increased their cleaning and sanitization procedures.
  • Most places are not accepting cash for the foreseeable future - make sure you have a credit or debit card to pay.
  • Many businesses are adding a COVID surcharge on services to help cover the costs of extra cleaning and PPE supplies.

For many retail stores selling merchandise that you can try on, be aware that any item of clothing that has been tried on and not purchased, will have to be sanitized before being put back on the rack. Most stores will have their own method for doing this. Check with staff on how to proceed with this.

And as businesses start to either expand their services and adjust to be opened, remember to be compassionate and have patience. This is new territory for everyone right now and as businesses adjust to new protocols and procedures, try to keep in mind that they are doing their best and need support during this re-building phase.



  • Shop in-person or online. Dine in-person or get takeout or delivery.
  • Wear masks when entering businesses.
  • Pre-order and pre-pay online.
  • Buy gift cards to use later.
  • Businesses that aren't open yet for in-person service may still be offering online sales, takeout, curbside pickup and/or delivery. Check their website or social media sites for more information. 
  • AND you can support small businesses without spending money by liking, commenting on, and sharing their posts on social media; leaving a positive review for them; giving them a shoutout on your social platforms;  or recommending them to friends. Or just reach out to your favourite small business owners and employees to see how they are doing. They'd love to hear from you!


If you want to stick closer to your home, consider supporting businesses in your area. Links to what's open below:

For more information and resources on the COVID-19 pandemic, visit downtownhalifax.ca/covid19

Check out exclusive deals and promotions on GetintheLoop Halifax, a FREE app. Learn more here.

Keep up to date with what is happening in Downtown Hailfax. Listen to #DowntownLowdown here