SAN FRANCISCO - Excitement is building as San Francisco prepares to welcome the NBA Finals to Chase Center Thursday.
The influx of fans is expected to help businesses in different parts of the city.
"Happy Monday," said a group of customers as they clicked glasses at Fog Harbor Fish House at Pier 39.
Happy Monday is expected to lead into a happy week for the restaurant.
Owner Bob Partrite said he's already seen an increase in reservations largely due to games 1 and 2 of the NBA Finals being played in San Francisco.
"We're really excited for it. Anytime we have something big in the sports world that's going on in San Francisco, we get a bump in business," Partrite.said the bump in business is thanks to fans from the nine Bay Area counties-in addition to the many Boston fans who live here locally.
Partrite said it will be all hands on deck along with extra food.and beverages.
He said the Finals is the shot in the arm that's much needed as businesses emerge from the pandemic, "It really creates a buzz . The city needs that buzz right now. Anything that creates a buzz is really helpful in bringing people into the city."
One couple from the East Bay said they plan to come back to the city Thursday.
They don't have tickets to the game but plan to arrive in San Francisco early in the day, spend money and watch the game at Thrive City.
"We're just going to hang out, go to bars , go to different places to eat and watch the game. Go Warriors," said Francie Esparza, a Warriors fan from Hercules.
"This is what we call a premier room," said Jon Handlery, owner of Handlery Hotel at Union Square.
He said the hotel is close to being sold out from Wednesday through the weekend
and that most guests will be coming from different parts of California.
"From Monterey to Stockton out to Auburn, pass Sacramento. It's coming to be locals who are going to come in," said Handlery.
The eight-story, 377 room hotel is offering specials with parking starting at $249 a night. He expects last minute bookings.
"It's very impulse driven. That's why to be in a position we are now, we have three days to fill for Thursday. I definitely think we'll fill. There's no question in my mind," said Handlery.
Andre Barocio of Hercules estimated that he'll spend $1,000 on Warriors gear, food and drinks on Thursday for game 1.
" I don't care what Charles Barkley says about San Francisco. It's a beautiful city."
Both the hotel and restaurant owners anticipate the economic impact to be substantial and widespread: from street vendors to large businesses alike.