A harsh reality. Lisa Vanderpump is saddened that her restaurants in Los Angeles and Las Vegas have had to close during the coronavirus pandemic, and now she’s opening up about the ordeal.
The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills alum, 59, was asked about the fate of her successful restaurant empire during a recent episode of Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen, and she didn’t mince her words when Cohen wondered how she was coping. “It’s been devastating. It’s not just our business, it’s our life as well,” she told the Most Talkative author, 51.
Vanderpump went on to explain that she was particularly worried about her staff, including many whom she has known for a long time, who are currently unemployed. “So many people have worked for us for years,” the Vanderpump Dogs owner added. “Now they’re all on unemployment, but just the fact that everything is gone right now. We can’t go in there, I can’t see what’s going on. It’s been devastating. It’s been really sad.”
Still, the Bravo star is hopeful her popular eateries — Villa Blanca, SUR, Pump, TomTom and the Vanderpump Cocktail Garden in Las Vegas — will be able to weather the storm. “Hopefully we’ll be one of the businesses that survive this, because a lot of people won’t, you know, and it’s a real worry,” she explained. “[Hopefully] we can resurrect it and give everybody their jobs back.”
Again, Vanderpump noted that she empathizes with her staff during this uncertain time. “I have very close relationships with a lot of my employees so it’s been really, really difficult and very, very sad,” she added.
In recent weeks, some of the entrepreneur’s employees have taken to social media and mentioned their financial situations. Last month, for example, SUR server Raquel Leviss confirmed she was unemployed when she kindly requested that her social media followers stop asking her for money. “I apologize to those who have reached out requesting $ from me to help with hardships,” beauty queen, 25, wrote in a March 27 Instagram caption. “Unfortunately I’m not in a place to donate to individuals at this time and I feel horrible about that.”
Fellow SUR employee and Vanderpump Rules star Scheana Shay was forced to do something very similar when, about a week prior, she too requested that fans not ask her for any funds. “This is a crazy time! But PLEASE you guys, stop asking me for $ on @venmo,” the “Good As Gold” singer, 34, tweeted at the time. “It makes me feel terrible reading your stories of why you need $$ and I am not rich! I support my family and have a ton of friends in the same situation right now. I wish I could help everyone but I can’t.”
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