Museums, libraries, zoo, funfairs, and cinemas close due to coronavirus

More activity temporarily ceases in Catalonia, including evictions and hearings, while Celler de Can Roca restaurant shuts until April and Nissan halts production

The front of Catalonia's National Art Museum in the center of Barcelona (by Joana Garreta)
The front of Catalonia's National Art Museum in the center of Barcelona (by Joana Garreta) / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

March 13, 2020 06:23 PM

As the Spanish government announced on Friday that it will declare a state of alarm to last two weeks beginning on Saturday, more public venues around Catalonia were either ordered to or chose to close their doors while the coronavirus crisis lasts.

The Catalan parliament agreed on Friday to suspend all activity in the chamber until March 27, although one plenary session will take place next week in order to ratify a government decree raising the salaries of public sector workers.

Meanwhile, the Catalan government ordered the closure of all shopping centers that do not sell food or basic necessities, as well as the country's ski resorts, gyms, and nighttime leisure venues, such as discos and night clubs.

The additional measures introduced also include the closure of museums and libraries in Catalonia for at least 15 days. Most museums, such as the MNAC national gallery, began closing on Friday, with others, such as the Maritime Museum, to close on Saturday.

Barcelona judiciary suspends evictions

Barcelona council said the city's judicial authorities had informed it that evictions would cease until the preventive measures are lifted, while Spain's high court in Catalonia, the TSJC, said it is suspending certain hearings and proceedings around the country.

Spain's National Court also postponed many of its upcoming judicial proceedings, including the trial against the Catalan police leadership during the 2017 independence bid, which has been suspended until further notice due to the coronavirus crisis.

Also in Barcelona, the zoo and the Tibidabo funfair will close to the public for 15 days from Saturday, while PortAventura World announced it is postponing the opening of its major theme park south of the Catalan capital, which had been due to open on March 27.

Although cinemas remain open at restricted capacity, the Cine Yelmo group said it had decided to temporarily close its network of movie theaters around Spain "due to exceptional circumstances." The group has six cinemas in Catalonia.

At the same time, the organizers of the Barcelona-Sant Jordi International Film Festival (BCN FILM FEST 2020) announced they had postponed the film festival, which was to have taken place between April 17 and 24, until June 19 to 26.

Production at Nissan plants on hold

Also on Friday, Japanese automaker Nissan halted production in its Zona Franca and Montcada plants in Barcelona at least until Tuesday due to coronavirus and supply problems caused by the lockdown in the central Catalonia town of Igualada

Catalan vehicle manufacturer SEAT also announced on Friday evening that it will be halting production of all of its shifts at its plant in Martorell, not far from Barcelona, beginning on Monday.

Meanwhile, the Roca brothers, the three sibling chefs who own El Celler de Can Roca, widely recognized as one of the best restaurants in the world, said the famous eatery in Girona would close until April 14 on account of the coronavirus crisis.

The crisis has also affected one of Catalonia's best-loved music groups, Sopa de Cabra, who postponed the concert to present their new album on March 14. The concert will now take place in May as part of the Cruïlla music festival.