Police Called After Mannequins Mistaken For Social Gathering

A Brisbane restaurant has been turning heads with their coronavirus inspired creativity.

When the Continental Cafe in New Farm was forced to move to take-away only, owner Beau Downs needed to come up with a way to keep getting bodies through the door.

"It's all in that concept that nobody likes an empty restaurant," Downs told 10 News First.

So they brought in some mannequins.

The cafe turned heads with this decision. Image: 10 News First

"There's a percentage of people - a high percentage maybe 70 per cent they get it and they laugh out loud and they ask to take photos but then there are the people who are like oh it's a bit creepy, and I agree, but it's tongue in cheek and it's a bit of fun, that's what we are trying to do."

Luke Reynolds' hairdressing salon next door was throwing the mannequins away.

Downs said he was originally going to take them home for his young daughters to play with until another idea popped into his head.

"I think it's great," Reynolds said. 

"If someone else can benefit in times like these from something that we didn't need I think it's a great thing."

Image: 10 News First

But the mannequins have caused a little bit of trouble.

Queensland Police were called after someone reported an illegal gathering at the restaurant. 

"The officer stopped outside and had the lights on, I approached the car and was a bit hesitant ... I assured him we weren't doing anything wrong. They had a laugh and saw the funny side," Downs said. 

Downs said he was unsure whether the heads will stay.

He really wants to have real people back in his restaurant.

"The restaurant for myself and my family is more than food and takeaway. It's about that social connection and connection with the community," he said.

"So this was a bit of a talking point, to develop a bit of interest in the restaurant and it's done that. It's been great for us."