A fire ripped through a hotel and restaurant in High Level on Saturday morning, completely destroying the building.
High Level firefighters, RCMP and EMS were called to the fire at 10402 97 Street, across from Highway 35, at about 9 a.m. Saturday. When they arrived, the Four Winds Centre's lobby, lounge and restaurant were completely engulfed in flames.
The fire was contained to the hotel, and the surrounding buildings were not damaged. Everyone was evacuated from the hotel and no one was injured.
"The flames were coming up pretty high and some of the roof structure came off the side of the building," Staff Sgt. Brad Giles said. "The hotel guest rooms themselves are a separate structure that kind of wrap around that building, and the fire department ... did a great job of keeping the fire contained to one building."
The cause of the fire remains under investigation, but police say initial information indicates it is not suspicious. Giles said the building is a "total loss," but said no damage estimate is available at this time.
Giles credits the fire department and hotel staff for making sure everyone escaped without injury. He said the hotel is a well-known building in the community, and that many people came to see what was going on Saturday morning.
"It's certainly been a structure that's been around for many years. I would suggest its one of the older hotel and lounge buildings in the community, and its basically in a cornerstone location of town right on the main highway area."
"It certainly was a huge interest to the town during the fire this morning."