Windjammer Beach Motel in Wewak burns 22 May 2011

Photo by Mike McCulley

Nationalpic by Gynnie Kero

Fire razes Windjammer, Wewak’s best known hotel

FLAMES roar as fire spreads through the Windjammer Beach Hotel in Wewak (above). It was Wewak’s oldest premier hotel. (RIGHT) Businessman, Sir Hugo Berghuser who owns the hotel under a special arrangement with the East Sepik  provincial administration, is in a daze after he was knocked down by a falling piece of timber from the burning hotel and was hit cross the face. He is supported by former East Sepik Premier Bruce Samban (in blue overalls). The fire started at about 6pm on Saturday. It is believed to have started in the hotel’s kitchen. It destroyed the dining area, the reception, the bar and the office and some accommodation rooms near the administration area of the hotel. Other rooms outside of the administration area were not affected by the fire. Last year, the hotel was left under water due to water surge. Sir Hugo was actually in the process of renovating the hotel when the fire broke out at the weekend.

Pictures: PAUL FUZO.

Source: ?            I notice that this piece states that the fire started on Saturday which would have been the 21st.


  1. Peter Johnson said,

    Deep apologies! Picture was passed on by me; taken by Mike McCulley, President of South Seas Tuna Corportation, Wewak…….Peter Johnson

  2. deberigny said,

    Peter, thank you, the attribution for the above photo has been changed. David

  3. Anonymous said,

    Oh no…My family stayed there many times. It had the best front beach…
    and the surf was beautiful…such a pity

  4. chris upton. said,

    A real shame. Loved the Windjammer as a little boy back in the 80’s.

  5. Anonymous said,

    I have fond memories of that motel. It’s sad to see these pictures however it would be great if another one gets built in the same spot!

  6. Justin Wade said,

    My family owned JUNAWA TRADING just down the road, which burned to the ground in the 1989. I new the Windjammer well because my uncle John Klink owned the service station just down on the corner, and I body surfed regularly out the front. So sad to see.

    • Maria and Werner Eisner said,

      Hi Justin, it is great, to hear somthing from our former neighbour. How is your mum, Tess? Send my love to your parents – your mum had been a big help to me in 1982.
      All my love Maria and Werner Eisner /Skul bilong stoakipa

  7. Paul Fuzo said,

    Sir Hugo rebuilds. “WINDJAMMER LIVES.”

  8. David Mac said,

    We lived in the highlands and loved to stay at the windjammer when on holidays, our young son did a runner from the dining room and went into a board room there and was ushered out by the then Mr. Somare.Maybe the party was in cabinet,the boy is about to turn thirty five. I am pleased it is being rebuilt.

  9. Maria said,

    We lived in Wewak 1982, neighbour to JUNAWA TRADING – hi, Justin, you can’t remember, but maybe your parents – and we stayed qiute often at Windjammer – it was such a wonderfull place. I hope it will be rebuilt.

    • Anonymous said,

      Hi My Name is Paula Simpson I also have fond memories of this Hotel my parent used to run New Guinea Earthmoving in the 80`s Phil & Brenda Davies we would often stay there and swim out the front. The beaches are beautiful I am looking at returning to PNG with my husband and two children for a holiday just to show my family some of the places I enjoyed visiting when I was a child. Happy to hear the hotel is still around..

      • Steve said,

        Could anyone please update me on the status of Windjammer Hotel as of May 2013? Has it been reopened? Is there a current e-mail address? thanks

  10. Anonymous said,

    I lived in Wewak from 1974 to 1979 great memories of the Windjammer as a teenager. I was recently in Wewak in 2008 , sad to the see the old place go up in flames. Bit like the old Sepik Club which met the same fate I was told.

  11. said,

    People should wear what they want,rather than blindly follow others.
    amazon authentic vivienne westwood most famous design

  12. Edwina Walker said,

    I wish to enquire about the Cheong family they are a well known family in Wewak, I was good friends with their daughter Maryanne Cheong who lives in Sydney, she would be in her 50’s now, I haven’t seen her for many years & was wondering whether anybody would know of her whereabouts?She was a wonderful friend & I hope she is still alive. Last known residence was around the Cabramatta area
    Thanks, if you hear anything. Edwina

  13. Denis Beahan said,

    I Flew & maintained Aircraft at Wirui & Wewak, through the 1970’s. Along with fellow aviators,Rick Gill, John Bywater, Ed Nicholson pleasant times were spent at the Windjammer. The view and hospitality was exceptional.
    No doubt the place has been rebuilt again ? Best of luck. Denis Beahan

  14. Fred Griffiths said,

    Sure was sad to read of the old Windjammer just today! I had been reading about the funeral of Michael Somare, whom I had known. My wife & I spent many evenings at the lounge there with a drink, buying artifacts from the wandering sales guys. I was the manager of the old Radio Wewak at the time, 1969. At that time The Windjammer was either owned or managed by a Dutchman and his son.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: