Fire destroys Surrey house formerly owned by well-known magician

House once belonged to Leon Giglio, better known as Mandrake the Magician for his feats of hypnotism, mind reading and escapes.

  • Aug. 29, 2016 6:00 p.m.
A house at Park Drive and Grosvenor Road in Surrey was destroyed by fire Sunday morning.

A house at Park Drive and Grosvenor Road in Surrey was destroyed by fire Sunday morning.

By Gordon McIntryre

SURREY — A house that once belonged to Mandrake the Magician burned down on Sunday morning in Surrey.

Neighbours noticed thick smoke a little after 9 a.m.

“The flames got pretty big, the fire pretty much engulfed the entire house,” said Kathleen Vergara, who lives across the street from the house at Grosvenor Road and Kindersley Drive in the Port Mann area.

Surrey Fire Service got a 911 call at 9:16 a.m.

“When crews arrived, the home was fully engulfed in flames and smoke,” assistant fire chief Brian Woznikoski said. “They went into a defensive attack and raised the alarm level to a second alarm.”

No residents of the home or firefighters were injured, Woznikoski said.

“Everyone got out safely,” he said. “It’s our understanding they were moving out in the next three days.”

Crews continued to monitor for hot spots late into Sunday afternoon.

The cause of the fire is under investigation. The roof collapsed and the extent of the damage will probably challenge inspectors, Woznikoski said.

The one-storey house once belonged to Leon Giglio, better known as Leon Mandrake and then Mandrake the Magician for his feats of hypnotism, mind reading and escapes.

Giglio died in 1993 and neighbours said the house became run down over the years since.

gordmcintyre@postmedia.com