After being closed for around two month due to the coronavirus pandemic, Elvis Presley’s Graceland has finally reopened to the public. However, the Memphis mansion is operating at 25 per cent capacity with new precautions against the spread of COVID-19 being put in place. Nevertheless, this means Elvis fans can experience the King’s home in a similar way to a presidential private tour, claim staff.
In a new video outside Graceland, Director of Archives Angie Marchese said, while wearing a face mask: “Hi everybody! Welcome back to Graceland!
“Our gates are open and we’re so excited to be able to welcome our first guests back here to Graceland. If you haven’t been now’s the perfect time to come.
“And if you have been, now’s gonna be a great time to come back because getting a tour of Graceland is gonna be like touring the mansion like the presidents did.
“Getting your own private tour of the house with our limited capacity.”
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Back in 2006, President George W Bush hosted Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi for a tour of Graceland’s mansion.
While former President Jimmy Carter has also visited the Memphis home.
Right now, Graceland are only allowing 10 visitors into the house at once, hence their assertion visitors will experience something of a private tour akin to a presidential visit.
In a FOX13 Memphis report, Angie said: “It really does feel like June 1982 [when Graceland first opened as a museum] all over again.
Lisa Marie and Priscilla Presley welcoming The Bushs and Japanese PM to Graceland in 2006
The Graceland archivist added: “Usually we get between 2-3000 people a day.
“Now we’re only doing 25 per cent of that.
“Basically touring the mansion, is going to be like your own private tour of Graceland.”
While the FOX13 reporter pointed out that guests would have to take a temperature check on arrival.
Visitors are also highly encouraged, but not required, to wear a face mask.
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Additionally, Graceland have placed blue arrows on the ground around the site, to mark where guests are to stand.
While extra sanitation stations have been set up too.
Graceland’s re-opening statement read: “We are so excited to see you back at Elvis Presley’s Graceland! 100+ acres dedicated to the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll will welcome back guests beginning Thursday, May 21.
“Graceland is committed to the health and safety of our guests and associates and has been working diligently to reconfigure all operations – including tours, retail and restaurants – to meet or exceed social distancing, capacity, and health and safety guidelines.”
They continued: “With Mansion tours reduced to 25 per cent capacity, guests will have the unique opportunity to walk in Elvis’ footsteps like never before – in your own personal mansion tour space spread out from other guests.”
“The state-of-the-art entertainment and exhibit complex over 200,000-square-feet in size, Elvis Presley’s Memphis offers guests the opportunity to tour the largest collection of Elvis memorabilia in the world in their own space, at their own pace.
“During the re-opening phase, restaurant capacities will be reduced by 50% and outdoor patio seating will also be available.
“In addition to reduced capacities, Graceland’s new health and safety protocols include all associates wearing masks (guests are encouraged to wear masks, as well), temperature checks for both guests and associates, six feet social distancing markers placed throughout the property, enhanced sanitisation procedures featuring commercial-grade continuous cleaning, hand sanitisation stations and touchless payment options.”