Burro e Alici, a cafe near the Trevi Fountain in Rome, is usually bustling with tourists taking a break from the "Eternal City". However, on Tuesday afternoon, owner Vito Vivanti wore a pair of blue rubber gloves to provide more and more customers with espresso.
"Business may be down 80%," Mr Vivanti said. He had earlier taped around his bar to indicate a safe distance for diners. People feel scared. If this continues for another week, we will have to close until the ban is lifted. "He added.
The Romans woke up to another city on Tuesday after Italy imposed the toughest restrictions on freedom of movement and held public meetings outside of wartime. In less than an hour, the government extended the blockade of most of the rich north to the country's 60 million residents in less than 48 hours.
Comprehensive quarantine restrictions are part of the country's efforts to curb the worst outbreaks outside China. Italy has more than 10,000 cases and more than 600 deaths. However, how much hastily arranged blockades can play in practice has caused confusion and fear among the Romans and Italians.
In Rome, a city of nearly 3 million people, most people are following the new rules, staying at home and nervously checking the news. Those who want to venture out must fill out a form explaining why they are traveling urgently for work or health reasons. Exactly what kind of travel can be classified as "urgent" is unclear.
"I'm not even sure if I can take a walk in the park," said Angese Frisenda, a Sicilian media worker who now lives in the Nomentano community, who has gone out to buy food. "The new measures have not been fully communicated."
Most of Rome's public transport infrastructure continues to operate on Tuesday, but usually crowded buses and rail terminals are almost empty. Many shops and restaurants are closed, and those that are open are instructed to close no later than 6pm.
The capital's bustling roads and squares are very quiet, and a small group of determined tourists wander around the city center. On Via dei Fori Imperiali, usually a group of people head to the Colosseum, trickle trickles everywhere, and two horse-drawn carriages stop. At the entrance to St. Peter's Square in the Vatican, guards prevented anyone from entering. Authorities blocked the Trevi Fountain late on Tuesday.
Those who arrived before the national blockade was announced on Monday night may wander the streets, despite technically violating a new decree requiring them to return home. All trips locked to Italy have been banned, and the lock can be retained as early as early April.
"We have planned a long trip and we will not cancel it," Rocio, 26, from Madrid, stood with her boyfriend outside the Colosseum. "I don't care if the restaurant is closed or not, we go to the supermarket to buy things. This is great, there is no one else here," she added.
In some European cities, the virus outbreak has sparked panic about toilet paper and other necessities. However, many supermarkets in central Rome are still well stocked and the short lines outside are managed by security personnel to ensure compliance with the mandatory distance of 1m.
For many Italians, one of the biggest challenges is the closure of schools, which forces them to take care of their children at home. For others, "social alienation" measures and curfew risks have caused severe financial pain.
"This has greatly affected my work," said physiotherapist Francesco Procopio. "He said he has cancelled appointments for older patients because it is easier for them. He said: "As a self-employed person, I think my income will be 80% less than usual. "
Laura Restelli, a 25-year-old student in Rome, didn't expect to finish college this month until a few days ago. Her plan is in chaos.
"My family will not even be allowed to graduate from Milan," she said. "I have been following all development projects without even leaving home. I just hope it will end soon, because if I do n’t go out to find work, I will not be able to pay rent for a long time. "
Others worry that the new restrictions will prevent them from caring for older relatives. Eleonora Camilli went to see her father on the way to the hospital. His father recovered from cardiac surgery, but she feared that she would not be able to visit him.
"I bought books and other necessities, but medical staff told us that we might not be able to give them to my father directly," she said.
"We must protect the most vulnerable, especially those recovering from the disease. Even if it means I don't know when I will see my father again, it makes me sad."