An early-morning fire Thursday caused about $1.5 million in damage to the Aristocrat Pub & Restaurant—a landmark in the Meridian-Kessler neighborhood since 1933.
Indianapolis firefighters were called to 5212 N. College Ave. at 3:39 a.m. and had the blaze under control in a little more than an hour.
The interior of the two-story, 6,000-square-foot brick structure sustained extensive damage, according to the Indianapolis Fire Department.
Restaurant owner Rick Rising-Moore, who lives next door to the building, discovered the fire after hearing the smoke alarms. Once inside, he encountered heavy smoke throughout the building, IFD said.
Three residents who live above the building in apartments all got out safely.
Firefighters encountered difficulties of extreme high heat and heavy smoke while navigating a maze of narrow hallways, tables, chairs and kitchen equipment, IFD said.
It took about 30 minutes for firefighters to locate the area where the fire originated. Three separate hallways leading to different areas of the building delayed their efforts, according to IFD’s report.
Twenty-three units were dispatched to the fire, which remains under investigation.
Rising-Moore has owned the restaurant since 1986. It has 35 employees.