Currently, I am celebrating the Chinese New Year, which is a 20 day celebration of the new lunar year. During this time, it is custom to visit and stay with the parent's family. On Chinese New Year's Eve and Day, Chinese people go to the dad's family to visit. On the second and third days of the Chinese New Year, Chinese people go to the mom's family to visit.
On these days, all stores are closed so that people can travel home to visit with family. It is also possible that throughout the whole 20 day holiday, the business will only be open for a couple of days or for shorter hours than normal. For example, my host family took me to a Chinese bank during the new year, but we had to go to a different locaton of the bank because the normal location was closed. Instead of opening every bank, the bank only opened certain locations on certain days to allow their staff to have a holiday. It is also possible that stores will be closed a couple of days before the holiday starts so the store owner can beat the traffic when they return home.
The Chinese culture is extremely family oriented. Therefore, culture dictates that everyone must return home to visit their familly during the holiday. This means that all stores will be closed the first few days of the holiday. Many more stores will be closed for the whole holiday.
Another tradition during the Chinese New Year is to meet friends at a restaurant for dinner. Therefore, restaurants must be open starting the fifth day of the Chinese New Year. They will stay open late to accomodate all of the people who want to meet their friends in their restaurant. The restaurants also have large rooms with round tables for these get-togethers to be held in. When Chinese people go to meet their friends for a meal, they want it to be in a separate room than the regular dining area. This also helps the restaurant because Chinese get-togethers are long and very loud. By putting the get-together in a separate room with a door, the regular diners are not disturbed.
Culture again dictates that restaurants need to be open and have these special rooms for larger parties to accomodate the Chinese New Year get-togethers.
In America, restaurants also have rooms to accomodate large parties, but these rooms are larger and there usually is only one or two rooms for larger parties. In China, there are tens to hundreds of rooms in each restaurant and each room holds about ten to fifteen people. Even with all of these rooms, restaurants are still packed and the rooms are always reserved.