Fire-ravaged Baltic restaurant to re-open in time for Olympics

By Emma Eversham

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Restaurant, London, London fire brigade

Baltic, revamped after a fire broke out in its kitchens four weeks ago, re-opens its doors today
Baltic, revamped after a fire broke out in its kitchens four weeks ago, re-opens its doors today
Baltic, the Eastern European restaurant close to London's Southbank, forced to close after a fire gutted its kitchens, will re-open its doors to customers today, just in time for the start of London 2012 Olympics.

Owner Jan Woroniecki and his staff have been working around the clock since the fire happened almost four weeks ago to get the business on Blackfriars Road, back up and running for what could be one of the most lucrative times for London's hospitality industry. 

Woroniecki, who opened the restaurant in a renovated 18th Century coach-builders in 2001, has spent £75k on building repairs and has lost another £100k in restoring contents and potential takings to get the restaurant back on its feet so soon. 

Kitchen fire

The fire, which broke out during lunch service on Sunday 24 June, started in the kitchen and spread to the dining area above and to the roof. The restaurateur said quick action by the London Fire Brigade meant it was kept to that area however and didn't affect the main restaurant.

“It would have been a disaster had the fire spread to the main restaurant area," he said. "The original beams would have gone up in a flash. We were very lucky." 

Olympics trade

Woroniecki said he had been concerned the restaurant wouldn't be able to trade during the Olympics when he saw the devastation it had caused, but praised the hard work of staff and builders to get it back to normal in time.

He said: "I’m delighted that after much anticipation, we’re opening in time. If it weren’t for the round the clock hard work of our staff and builders, this just wouldn’t have been possible.”

Baltic will re-open for lunch today with a new kitchen and refurbished restaurant and bar area.  

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