Gemma Steakhouse operator fined $14,000 for COVID breaches from dinner for 75

·Editorial Team
·2 min read
 Gemma Steakhouse at National Gallery Singapore. (PHOTO: Gemma Steakhouse/Facebook)
Gemma Steakhouse at National Gallery Singapore. (PHOTO: Gemma Steakhouse/Facebook)

SINGAPORE — The licensee of Gemma Steakhouse at National Gallery Singapore was fined $14,000 in court on Wednesday (19 May) for breaching safe management measures (SMMs) during Phase Two of Singapore’s reopening last year.

The Singapore Food Agency (SFA) said in a statement that on 2 November 2020, it received information on a Halloween-themed dinner held on 31 October at Gemma Steakhouse. The restaurant had worked with a private members’ club to organise the dinner, which was attended by about 75 diners comprising both members of the club and their guests.

Although the diners were seated at tables of up to five, CCTV footage showed multiple occasions of intermingling between diners from different tables. The footage also showed that the restaurant staff did not take steps to prevent the intermingling.

The restaurant had breached SMMs by accepting a large booking for this dinner and failing to take reasonable steps to prevent intermingling amongst the diners.

SFA had then issued an order requiring Il Lido, operator of Gemma Steakhouse, to close the restaurant for a period of 20 days from 3 December to 22 December 2020.

During Phase Two of Singapore’s reopening (19 June to 27 December 2020), social gatherings of groups of more than five outside an individual’s residence were prohibited. F&B outlets were also prohibited from accepting bookings from groups larger than five, even if such groups were split across multiple tables. Intermingling between groups across different tables was strictly prohibited.

Meanwhile, the National Environment Agency said on Wednesday that two F&B premises have been ordered to close and another two F&B outlets have been issued composition fines for breaching SMMs.

HooHa Restaurant & Cafe at Viva Vista was ordered to close for 30 days after it committed a third offence by allowing customers to consume alcohol after 10.30pm on 14 May and provided card games and music entertainment.

Darts Legend was ordered to close for 20 days after it committed a second offence by allowing darts to be played on a dart machine on 14 May.

Two F&B outlets at Ngee Ann City, Food Village and The Sushi Bar Dining, were fined $1,000 each for breaching SMMs such as failing to maintain safe distancing between patrons.

Nine individuals were fined for gathering in groups of more than two on 16 May in parks and beaches managed by the National Parks Board.

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