Fire guts popular Fairbanks restaurant

Posted: Monday, May 07, 2001

FAIRBANKS (AP) -- In an event that many Fairbanksans may find tantamount to losing a treasured friend, popular local bar The Marlin Restaurant and Lounge was partially gutted by a fire that broke out early Sunday morning.

No one was injured in the blaze, the cause of which is believed to be electrical.

The fire, which broke out shortly before 6 a.m. Sunday, destroyed the back room of the bar, while the rest of the establishment sustained smoke and water damage. Firefighters said the blaze had broken out near the fireplace in the bar.

As fire crews entered the building at two points to isolate and combat the blaze, another problem arose: Two tenants were trapped in the apartments upstairs. Firefighters were able to swiftly rescue both using ladders.

Patrick Kezer, who has leased the Marlin from building owner Gerry Ostrow since 1999, said he did not believe the bar can be reopened, at least in its present location. Kezer said he had no insurance on the property. Total damage is estimated at $150,000.

Ironically, one of the reasons for the nightspot's popularity was its no-smoking policy. ''And it goes up in smoke,'' Kezer said.

News of the fire had apparently spread quickly and that a number of people had stopped by throughout the day to mourn the loss of the Marlin.



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