Fire Burns Popular Nightclub
At Hollywood & Vine
April 30, 2008
Anita Rosenberg / Los Angeles Times
LOS ANGELES — A huge fire burned through the roof of a building housing a popular nightclub at the famed intersection of Hollywood and Vine in Hollywood on Wednesday morning, but no injuries were reported.
Firefighters were sent to a large single-story building in the 6200 block of Hollywood Boulevard about 5:30 a.m., said d’Lisa Davies of the Los Angeles Fire Department. The fire was extinguished at 7:58 a.m., she said.
But less than an hour later, firefighters were seen battling a flareup on the roof of the building at 1707 N. Vine Street.
Firefighters — concerned that the roof could collapse because of heavy air-conditioning units atop the building — moved into a “defensive” posture after about 20 minutes and worked to prevent the flames from spreading to other structures.
A large billboard atop the building shifted, causing some concern that it might collapse.
Crews using aerial ladders poured water on the flames from above, and utilities to the building were shut off.
Metro Red Line trains were unaffected, but officials re-routed bus lines 163, 217, 780, 210 and 180, said Metro spokesman Luis Inzunza.
The fire apparently began in the attic of the building, which houses the Basque Nightclub and Restaurant, a firefighter said.
Water filled the street outside the building, and traffic was routed away from the area, which appeared likely to remain closed off for much of the day.
The blaze was designated a major emergency fire, one that involves the deployment of at least 16 fire engines. This morning, 23 fire engines were sent to the scene, Davies said.
It was the second major fire at a Hollywood restaurant in a week. On Saturday afternoon, a fire apparently sparked by faulty wiring gutted “Off Vine,” 6263 W. Leland Way, near Vine Street and about two blocks south of the site of this morning’s blaze.
The weekend fire, which left two firefighters injured, caused about $450,000 in damage to the century-old two-story house that had been converted into an eatery, said Fire Department spokesman Brian Humphrey.
Owners vowed to rebuild the restaurant, which has served celebrities and families for more than 20 years.