Power remains off at Deauville Beach Resort after small fire

Miami Salsa Congress organizers scramble to find new event venue

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Power remains shut off Wednesday at the Deauville Beach Resort on Collins Avenue, a day after an electrical fire broke out, forcing guests to evacuate.

According to the city, the hotel was using an air conditioner chiller that was installed without electrical permits and was ordered last week to stop using it immediately.

That apparently did not happen, resulting in a cable from the chiller sparking the small fire.

City officials said the hotel was handed over another violation on Wednesday for bringing in a backup generator that they again did not have permits for. 

The hotel has not commented on their violation of the city's orders, but said they moved 800 guests to other properties since the hotel is shut down.

Local 10 News reporter Derek Shore spoke to a group of people from Argentina who had reservations at the hotel, but were told that employees were working to find them somewhere else to stay.

"I'm concerned (and) upset, so I don't know what to do. So, I am waiting for an answer," Diego Del Castillo said. 

Meanwhile, Local 10 News learned that the 16th Annual Miami Salsa Congress, which is expected to bring in thousands of Salsa enthusiasts, was set for this week at the Deauville.

"In a matter of 24 hours I've had to move a total event of over 5,000 attendees," event organizer Rene Gueits said. 

Gueits said he is in the process of securing back-up accommodations if the Deauville doesn't open by Friday, and will be relying on the hotel to help.

"Any loss that any clients are taking with hotels, I'm hoping that they are going to cover that cost," he said.

The city said it will not allow the hotel to reopen as long as it continues to be in violation of building codes.