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Flames destroy nightclub near Reliant

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

A fire destroyed a nightclub off the South Loop and damaged other businesses, and now it looks like it may be a case of arson.

The fire broke out just before 4:30am at the Azul Lounge on the Buffalo Speedway near South Main and the South Loop. The owner says he is relieved that no one was there when the fire started, but he is disappointed to learn that firefighters believe it may have been deliberately set.

Coye Devrouax is surveying what's left of his business. The Azul Lounge, which he opened three years ago, is hard to recognize after an early morning fire ate through the entire bar.

"Friends called the house this morning and told us that the building had caught on fire," Devrouax said.

Firefighters say at 4:30am, a driver called 911 after noticing flames shooting from the building.

HFD spokesperson Jay Evans said, "Houston Fire Department arrived within four minutes. The guys went inside and the fire had already worked its way inside the lounge. Houston firefighters went in and stopped the fire."

Even though it took firefighters a short time to put out the fire, the business is still a total loss. Investigators believe this could be an arson case. There is evidence that the fire began outside, and signs that an accelerant was used to feed the flames.

Devrouax is hoping to get things back to normal within a month.

"It was definitely an up and coming lounge, the only lounge in the Reliant stadium area and we had great clientele," he said.

One property adjacent to this lounge had minor damage, but that restaurant, Fox Grill, is no longer in business.

The owner says he has not received any threats and does not believe anyone he knows would have set the fire. He has turned surveillance video over to police. No one was injured.

(Copyright ©2014 KTRK-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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