Monterey, California’s Old Fisherman’s Grotto has implemented a ‘Children’s Policy’ which owner Chris Shake claims has been a success and has aided in providing customers with an ‘enhanced’ dining experience. The policy is made clear to all customers upon entry with a sign at the counter stating “no strollers, no high chairs, no booster chairs. Children crying or making loud noises are a distraction to other diners, and as such are not allowed in the dining room”.
Shake said he doesn’t want customers to have a bad experience or be distracted by other diners’ children in the dining area.
“We have never refused families with children, but often times they do not come in because we are very clear about our policy. If their children become disruptive in the dining room, they will be asked to leave,” said Shake.
The policy is legally sound, approved by a lawyer, and welcomes ‘well-behaved’ children. Strollers were first banned in the restaurant in 2009 as they made it difficult for staff to get around the restaurant and took up too much space. Since then, the policy expanded to include noisy, misbehaving children.
While the restaurant has received mixed reviews on Yelp about the policy, Shake insisted many customers appreciated it.
“The policy has worked out very well for our guests and our employees. Many of our guests comment that our policy is the reason they dined with us.”