Faculty Club To Reopen After Norovirus Outbreak

After closing for more than a month due to a norovirus outbreak that sickened over 300 people, the Harvard Faculty Club will reopen for private events on Monday.

The Club, which had been undergoing inspections for food safety, reopened for overnight guests on May 6. The restaurant portion of the Club will officially reopen in early June.

The Club first closed in late March due to an outbreak of the gastrointestinal virus, which is caused by the consumption of contaminated food or contact with infected individuals. The establishment reopened Easter weekend but closed two days later, after the reporting of more than 100 new cases of the illness, according to The Boston Globe.

The Cambridge Department of Public Health authorized the Club to reopen in late April, but officials at the Club—which caters to Harvard faculty, alumni, and other guests—decided to delay reopening the restaurant service until after Commencement.

“Every contact surface and piece of equipment in the Faculty Club was sanitized, everything from floors and counters to rugs and drapery, as well as the internal mechanisms of equipment such as coffee and ice machines,” Harvard University Dining Services spokesperson Crista Martin told the Globe in an e-mail. “All food was discarded, and the kitchen was completely restocked.”

Despite the setbacks, Samuel D. Stuntz ’10—who plans to hold his wedding reception at the Faculty Club at the end of May—said that he and his fiancee, Elizabeth A. Cook ’10, are not concerned about the virus outbreak.

“The fact that they were closed for so long shows that they were obviously really devoted to not doing anything unless it was absolutely safe," Stuntz said. "It’s a really popular place so that obviously means we assumed they were working really hard to get it fixed."

“I’m not worried about it at all," he added, about his impending wedding reception.

Staff at the Club were not available for comment on Sunday.

Rooms at the Club during Commencement week start at $429 per night for a three-night minimum.

—Staff writer Xi Yu can be reached at xyu@college.harvard.edu.

—Staff writer Julie M. Zauzmer can be reached jzauzmer@college.harvard.edu.

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