Spain hotel fire: One dead and nine injured as major blaze forces guests to climb down balconies

Terrified holidaymakers forced to clamber to safety down facade on outside of boutique hotel

Tim Wyatt
Friday 21 August 2020 15:38
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One dead and 10 injured as major fire sends guests climbing down balconies of hotel in Spain

A fire at a luxury hotel on the Costa del Sol popular with British tourists and celebrities has claimed the life of one man and injured nine others.

The Sisu Boutique Hotel in Puerto Banus, near Marbella, burst into flames around 6am on Friday and took at least three hours to put out.

While the blaze went on videos shared online showed some guests having to escape by climbing out of windows and down several stories along the outside of the building.

Dramatic footage shows figures desperately clinging to the ornamental patterned façade of the hotel as they inch their way down the side of the building to the ground floor and safety.

The victim who died trying to escape the flames was a French tourist, but he has not yet been named publicly, a police spokesperson said.

Video footage shows the huge conflagration billowing smoke into the night sky as a clutch of fire engines and firefighters battle to bring the fire under control.

Ten fire engines and 24 firefighters were needed to put out the blaze.

According to some local reports and the police, nine guests have been treated for injuries, mostly smoke inhalation.

The Daily Mail reported firefighters had to spray water on the wooden façade to cool it down sufficiently so some of the trapped guests could use it to climb to where their ladders could reach.

As well as 100 guests and staff from the Sisu Boutique Hotel, some residents of nearby buildings also had to be rescued by firefighters, the authorities confirmed.

Malaga province’s civil protection agency said it took rescue crews three hours to extinguish the blaze.

The exclusive hotel, where rooms start at €200 (£180) a night, is popular with some British celebrities. Figures from TV shows such as The Only Way Is Essex and Coronation Street have been photographed staying there in the past.

It had only re-opened three weeks ago, after it was forced to close amid the coronavirus pandemic lockdown, according to a local councillor.

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