A high-end cake shop on the city’s North side burned down Monday morning after a blaze started in the building’s second floor residence, fire officials said.
Cakegirls is a nationally known brand that has made baked goods for Bono, Queen Latifah and Pete Wentz, among others. The bakery has won the Food Network Challenge three times and their cakes can go for as much as $900.
But sisters Brenda and Mary Maher will have to find a new place to make their sweet goodness because firefighters said the 10-year-old building, at 2209 W. Belmont Avenue in Roscoe Village, is a complete loss.
"We put a lot of work into this business," Brenda Maher told the Chicago Tribune. "Now in a flash it doesn't exist. This is devastating. This is our livelihood. We built this from nothing."
The fire, which started in a residence on the floor above the bakery, spread quickly and led to the building’s roof collapse. By the time firefighters had the blaze under control at around 6:50 a.m. they were battling to keep it from spreading to nearby buildings.
Neighbors called 911, but said they could do little more.
"Immediately, I came in the house and I grabbed a pitcher of water and started throwing some water on it, trying to help it a little bit, anyway, but I don't know -- I was just scared," said Valisa Wilks.
All of the tenants were able to get out safely, said Vince Tan, the building's owner. he expressed sadness by the loss but said he hopes to rebuild.
Employees at a nearby Starbucks store, where the sisters frequented, said people are already talking about ways to help.
Customers with existing orders should send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.