MONTREAL -- Quebec's reopening plan is "conditional," Health Minister Christian Dube reminded Quebecers Monday, following reports over the weekend of large gatherings in parks and crowded restaurant patios.

"We understand that people, and not only young people, all the population, were anxious to get those measures out of the way," Dube told reporters in Montreal, a few days after his government lifted the curfew and permitted private outdoor gatherings and restaurant patio dining.

"This deconfinement plan is conditional on respecting the measures and having a high percentage of the people being vaccinated," he said, adding that he recognized the large, problematic gatherings reported in Montreal and Quebec City were "exceptional" and a majority of people followed the rules.

Restrictions across several Quebec regions were further eased on Monday.

Five regions, including Quebec City, moved from red to the orange pandemic-alert level, under which gyms and indoor restaurant dining can reopen. In the Chaudiere-Appalaches, Estrie and Bas-St-Laurent regions, several municipalities remained at the red alert level while the rest of the regions moved on Monday to orange.

Montreal and its northern suburb Laval remain red zones, although Premier Francois Legault has said he expected those two areas to move to orange on June 7.

Richard Zaroukian, who owns the Quartier Revolution gym in Brossard, Que., on Montreal's south shore, said it felt good to open on Monday after his business had been closed for the majority of 2021.

"You can see people's demeanour, you could see their energy as they walk in and everyone had a smiley face walking in," he said. "The vibe is super positive, people are just happy to be back, they want to get back in shape."

Zaroukian said his gym had been closed since October, except for a 12-day period at the end of March and beginning of April when gyms were briefly allowed to reopen.

It hasn't been easy, he said, adding that his businesses has been able to stay alive because sales had risen in the months before the pandemic. While he said he has received government financial support to help him pay rent, that money doesn't cover other costs, such as electricity.

Summer is the low season for gyms, Zaroukian said, adding that he hoped June and July will be busier than usual as people look to get back in shape.

-- This report by The Canadian Press was first published in French on May 31, 2021. With files from CTV News Montreal.