Portland hospitality giant McMenamins has announced it is closing all its Oregon properties except one for the next four weeks, and temporarily laying off 3,000 employees—"almost everyone at the company," according to a press release.
The eclectic chain of pubs, hotels and movie theaters announced the shutdown today, one day after Gov. Kate Brown ordered bars and restaurants across the state to close in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
Founding brothers Mike and Brian McMenamin issued the following statement:
“Today, we’re taking the necessary and unprecedented step of temporarily closing the doors of all of our McMenamins locations in Oregon and Washington for the next several weeks. The one exception: Our 23rd Ave. Bottle Shop in Portland will remain open for to-go sales. It’s taken a lifetime to build this company, together with the help of our employees and customers. This is something none of us ever could have anticipated. After exploring all options, we are laying off nearly 3,000 employees – almost everyone at the company – effective Today, March 17. This is drastic, but necessary, to allow our employees to file for unemployment benefits and ensure that there will be jobs to come back to when this extraordinary episode ends. And we are confident it will end. Until then, we thank you for your support and understanding and look forward to gathering with you again soon.”
Representatives for the company could not provide further comment.
The 23rd Avenue Bottle Shop in Northwest Portland is the sole business in Oregon under the McMenamins umbrella to remain open. Customers can still buy beer, wine, spirits and swag there to-go.
Currently, Washington's McMenamins properties are undergoing a two-week closure.