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Sunday, June 23, 2024
HomeNewsLocal newsInvestigators Query Beachcomber Burn

Investigators Query Beachcomber Burn

Fire engulfed the Island Beachcomber Hotel’s abandoned husk Tuesday. (Photo courtesy VIFEMS)

Fire investigators were working to determine the causes of a blaze that ripped through the former Beachcomber Hotel Tuesday morning, officials said.

The second story of the abandoned hotel was engulfed in flames as firefighters arrived at around 10:40 a.m. They were able to bring the burn under control within 15 minutes, said Jonelle-Alexis Jackson, the Virgin Islands Fire and Emergency Medical Services’ public information officer.

No one was hurt. It wasn’t immediately clear if the property was insured.

“At this time, the nature/cause has not been determined from the investigations still in progress,” Jackson said.

Right across from Cyril E. King Airport, the Island Beachcomber had been a bustling hotel and popular locals lime since the 1950s before suffering extensive damage in the 2017 hurricanes. The 1.9-acre Lindbergh Bay property was slated for demolition in 2018 while the Port Authority, which owns the land, sought a new developer.

Several would-be vied for the chance to recreate the landmark, but in February 2023, a deal fell apart. Port Authority wanted someone to raze the battered hotel husk and replace it with a three-star or higher hotel and/or a water recreation facility.

The Beachcomber blaze was at least the fifth fire on St. Thomas in 2024. On Jan. 26, a residential property in Altona and Welgunst burst into flames. Three days later, another house fire ripped through the top floor of a Wintberg home. On Friday, Feb. 23, an Estate Solberg structure billowed smoke from the hillside over Charlotte Amalie before firefighters extinguished the fire. And the Tropical Bliss Spa in Crown Bay was engulfed in flames Monday afternoon.

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