02:30AM, Friday 25 April 2014
A massage parlour owner has spoken of her determination to get her Windsor business back up and running just two weeks after it was ravaged by smoke and flames.
Firefighters were called to the Swasdee Thai Massage Parlour in Victoria Street at 12.30am on Saturday, April 12, after a fire broke out in the rear of the property, causing extensive damage.
Four people were rescued from the first floor flat above the business after the rear access was filled with smoke.
Business owner Darunee Hermitage, originally from Thailand, was at home in Richmond when the fire started.
The 38-year-old said: "I was at home having enjoyed two days off when my friend knocked at the door at 1am and told me to get up as there was a fire in the shop.
"I made my way down to Windsor and when I saw the extent of the damage I was shocked and started crying, I was like that for two days."
The blaze is believed to have been caused by an electrical accident stemming from a plug socket at the back of the business which caught alight.
Repair works began straight away, costing between £20,000 and £25,000, and it is hoped the parlour will re-open tomorrow morning.
Darunee, who has been running the business for 18 months, said: "I wanted to get the shop back up and running as soon as possible because my clients are my priority.
"I don't care about the money, I care about my feelings and those of my five employees, because everybody loves working and I worry about them."
Expansion is now on the agenda for Darunee, who hopes to start a franchise of shops alongside her businesses in Windsor and Richmond.
She added: "Moving on is my top priority."
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