UPDATE. The Coronavirus Effect: Theaters closed, football matches played in empty stadiums and Ceausescu’s House of the People shut

Cladirea Palatului Parlamentului. Inquam Photos / Alexandru Busca

Romanian theaters and museums are shut, large social gatherings have been banned, football matches are being played in empty stadiums, and even Bucharest’s iconic House of the People has closed its doors to the public.

These are a few ways the coronavirus crisis is affecting people’s social lives and leisure activity in Romania.

The latest announcement is the closure of the giant palace built by later Communist leader Nicolae Ceausescu. The building houses both chambers of parliament, the Museum of Contemporary Art and hosts numerous events such as balls, meetings and summits.

It will be closed from March 10 to March 31 when the situation will be reviewed.

The government has banned all events where 1,000 people or more are expected to gather. Some even organizers have postponed smaller events such as art exhibitions, big birthday parties or large dinners as a precautionary measure and the likelihood of no-shows with people too anxious to venture out.

Public gatherings and events where fewer than 1,000 people are expected are allowed to go ahead, but need to be approved by the Bucharest Public Health Department.

There are currently 25 cases of COVID-19 in Romania. Five of those have recovered.

Parliament and various parliamentary commissions have suspended internships due to COVID-19. Parliament will deal with requests by phone, mail or email.


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