Fire at popular Wellington cafe

18:07, Aug 26 2012
Maranui cafe
Maranui Cafe manager Freya Atkinson inspects the damage from the fire.
Maranui cafe
The fire damaged weatherboards at the Maranui Cafe.

The Maranui Cafe in Lyall Bay has been hit by another fire, three years after it was destroyed by a blaze.

A fire was lit in the cafe's cardboard recycling bin at about 2am on Sunday, and spread to the side of the building.

The arson attack set off a security alarm at the cafe, and fire engines were called to the scene.

Co-owner Bronwyn Kelly said the fire caused some damage to the building's exterior, with weatherboards needing to be replaced and repainted.

The gas supply was also out until about 11.30am - affecting peak trading at the cafe.

"We made an emergency menu, which was a lot shorter," said Ms Kelly.

"It wasn't that great, but people were pretty understanding."

The cafe was painstakingly restored after a fire in August 2009.

"It's a little bit freaky, seeing [the damage], and smelling the fire as well," said Ms Kelly.  "It brings back a few memories.

"And they say lightning doesn't strike twice."

Model Miranda Kerr name-checked Maranui as a favourite in an interview for the New York Times' fashion magazine earlier this month.

Related story: Cafe review: Maranui Cafe

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Maranui cafe
GUTTED: From left, surf club captain Shane O'Connor, cafe co-owner Matthew Wilson, club president Jim Warwick, cafe co-owners Katie Richardson and Bronwyn Kelly and club chairman Peter Clark with the burnt-out building behind them.
RECORDS LOST: The fire extensively damaged the building and destroyed irreplaceable surf club records and memorabilia.
CHARRED REMAINS: The Maranui cafe's interior.
FIRE DAMAGE: Co-owner Matthew Wilson said the cafe was 'pretty much written off'.
FIRE DAMAGE: The blaze began around 1.30am on Saturday.
Maranui cafe
FIRE DAMAGE: Melted straws inside the gutted cafe.
CHARRED: The outside of the Maranui cafe.
CHARRED: The outside of the Maranui cafe.
Maranui Cafe
Damage from the fire at Maranui Cafe on August 26.

The Dominion Post