Fire and rescue teams from Hampshire and the Isle of Wight spent nine hours battling flames in the former Gaiety Arcade at Ventnor Esplanade on Tuesday evening and into the wee hours of this morning (Wednesday).
An investigation is currently underway into what happened.
Firefighters were called shortly before 6pm – arriving to find the building well lit.
Crews from Shanklin, Ventnor, Sandown, Ryde, Newport, Cowes, Freshwater and East Cowes were all in attendance.
They used an aerial ladder, main jets and hose reels, as well as water carriers, at the scene.
Overnight, fire crews from Hampshire were dispatched to support island crews and maintain fire cover.
In Ventnor, residents were told to stay indoors and keep windows closed due to heavy smoke.
Although no building had to be officially evacuated, the nearby restaurant The Smoking Lobster had to close and diners were asked to leave.
This morning, the roads in the region remain closed.
We caught up with Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Commander James Lucy who gave us an update on the scene…
Elsewhere, the Wellington Hotel in Ventnor provided accommodation for any displaced persons.
By 3 a.m. the fire was out and the crews were dwindling.
Two fire engines remain on site.
As the County Press reported in May, there had been plans to create a beachfront residence – with a nod to its heritage.
The design aimed to incorporate the former Gaiety Amusement building and survey work was underway to see if it could be saved and incorporated.
Demolition was underway at the site, which occupies a prominent central position on the Ventnor Esplanade.
It is next to the historic Villa Amanti, which has been completely renovated in recent years.