Fire forced the evacuation of the Holiday Inn on Portugal Cove Road in St. John’s early Friday morning.
St. John’s Regional fire department platoon chief Dean Foley said the fire started in some construction materials on the unoccupied third floor, forcing guests to leave all 158 occupied rooms. He added that when firefighters arrived just after 2 a.m., the sprinkler system had extinguished the fire but the floor was filled with smoke.
Guests of the hotel could be seen gathered at the entrances or, in the case of a large group of students at the hotel, sitting in school buses keeping warm. Foley said they had to isolate the water supply for the third floor to cut off the flow of water to the sprinkler that had activated. Both the third and fourth floors in that wing of the hotel are under construction.
Once the fire area was secured and smoke had been vented from the hotel, guests were allowed to return to their rooms.
The third floor of the hotel suffered smoke and water damage while the floors below that one had water damage.
In a statement Fruday night, the hotel's general manager Kimberly Snow said the hotel had resumed normal operations after the fire.
"We are appreciative of the swift response from local authorities and we regret any inconvenience this may have caused to guests," Snow said.
No information was available as to how the fire started.
The incident is under investigation.