By Gary Nelson

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A popular South Miami restaurant and bakery suffered heavy damage after an overnight fire ripped through it.

It happened just after midnight at Delicias de España on Red Road, just off Bird Road.

It took firefighters about an hour to put out the fire. One firefighter was injured and taken to an area hospital. No word on his condition.

 Fire Rips Through Popular Delicias de España Restaurant In South Miami

Miami-Dade firefighters attacking fire at the Delicias de España Restaurant and Bakery. (Source: Miami-Dade Fire Rescue)

Delicias De España is a landmark Spanish restaurant, whose name translates to delights of Spain. There was nothing delightful, however, when a two-alarm fire destroyed the restaurant and bakery just after midnight Tuesday morning.

The popular restaurant was opened by Ernesto Llerandi and his wife, Isabel, nearly 23 years ago.

“I’m going to fix it and repair it. We were expanding into the old pharmacy next door and we’re going to open it as soon as we got the permits. We will rebuild,“ Llerandi said.

The restaurant employed some 70 people, many for years. Everyone was like family.

“My grandfather has had restaurants in Spain and the Dominican Republic, so it’s a tragedy to come here at midnight and there’s all this fire that’s devastated the whole restaurant,“ said the owner’s grandson, Daniel Cuadriello.

So great was the sense of loss, the Spanish consul general came by the fire scene.

“It’s a very, very dear place to us. It’s not just because they bring an excellent product, but the Llerandi family and the people that work here are very special. They are very Spanish,“ said Spanish Consul General to Miami, Candido Creis.

One fireman was hurt as he and dozens of others attacked the blaze.

“One of our guys was injured and was transported to a local hospital,“ said Battalion Chief Manuel Dominguez.

A consignment store next to the restaurant suffered heavy smoke damage.

“The firefighter got hurt. That’s more important than the building,“ said consignment store owner Carmen Franchi de Lafaro. “I am relieved to see nothing happened to the store. These are well-made buildings. This building is from 1947. Strong,” Lafaro said.

The owner says he will quickly rebuild the original Delicias De España. He will try to rotate as many displaced employees as possible into positions in the restaurant’s two other locations.

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