Arson, electrical causes out in Chateau Caribbean fire as B.T.I.A. sympathizes
While National Fire Service officials promised full details on Monday of its ongoing investigation, News Five has been told that arson and electrical causes have been ruled out in the fire that consumed the Chateau Caribbean Hotel on Sunday morning. An employee told News Five earlier this week that the fire started in the kitchen while they were preparing for a catering. The long-established hotel turned restaurant, a landmark of the Fort George Tourism Zone, carried an insurance policy, according to fire investigators. The loss of the Chateau creates a hole in the Belize City brand that will be difficult to replace, at least for now. On Thursday, President of the Belize Tourism Industry Association, Osmany Salas, whose office building sits on the other side of Memorial Park from the Chateau, expressed his sadness at the loss of this tourism icon.
Osmany Salas, President, B.T.I.A.
“I think, like many Belizeans who were on social media, I heard the news on Facebook last Sunday; I was shocked and saddened. The Chateau Caribbean – it was a hotel, but it was also a restaurant; it was an institution, to me almost a historical monument because of how long it has been around. So it was always a landmark in Belize City, in that area of Memorial Park; neighbours to the B.T.I.A., that is where our head office is located. So when I saw that I was very sad; I feel for the owners, for the Los, and for the staff, because I understand it’s not recoverable, it’s a lost business and there will be many families that will be directly affected as a result. So I wish them well, it will take a whole lot; I mean, they were not members of the B.T.I.A., but they were neighbors, they were stakeholders, and I wish them the very best.”