The well-known Noélia & Jerónimo restaurant, in Cabanas de Tavira, Algarve, has been closed since last weekend, after several employees tested positive for the novel coronavirus, which gave rise to the small localized outbreak announced on Thursday by the city council of Tavira.
On Thursday, the municipality issued a statement reporting the existence of a contagion outbreak in the parish of Cabanas de Tavira with at least eight new cases associated with this outbreak so far. "The Tavira Health Centre has identified the chain of transmission and is conducting tests on all direct contacts of the people involved in this chain," explained the council.
Last Sunday, the restaurant had already announced their temporary closure due to the possibility of contagion. “Dear customers, we will be closed indefinitely. We had a client with COVID-19 at our restaurant and we are going to be quarantined. It is for your and our safety”, announced the restaurant through Facebook. "We are all going to do tests, do our quarantine and as soon as everything is in order, we will be back," added the same note.
During the week, it was confirmed that the restaurant had been the site of the spread of the virus. Speaking to press, the mayor of Tavira, Ana Paula Martins, revealed that the first three confirmed cases were three residents of the parish “who worked together” and who later transmitted the disease to five other people, either in the workplace, or in a family context. “Direct contacts have all been tested. But tests are still being carried out on other people,” said the mayor. "The number could still grow, although I very much hope that it doesn't."
Noélia Jerónimo, owner of the restaurant, confirmed to national weekly Expresso that she herself contracted the disease. "One of my kitchen staff started to show symptoms and I immediately decided to close the restaurant and test the entire team," said the cook.
"We have four people from the kitchen with COVID-19, and at the moment everyone is undergoing treatment at home," added the cook, stressing that "no one in the room or who has been in contact with the clients was positive".
In Portugal, a total of 40,866 cases of Covid-19 have been recorded, with the disease causing the death of 1,555 people.