I don’t recall seeing this car chase scene in any Lebanese movies.
Picture taken from CNN
Christopher Columbus has long been the poster boy Renaissance explorer who found fame and fortune by sailing from the Old World to the New. But more than five centuries later, a British adventurer plans to show that the New World could have been reached by another seafaring nation 2,000 years before Columbus. Former Royal Navy officer Philip Beale hopes to sail a replica Phoenician boat 10,000 kilometers across the Atlantic in an ambitious voyage that could challenge maritime history.
By completing the journey, Beale aims to demonstrate that the Phoenicians — the ancient Mediterranean civilization that prospered from 1500BC to 300BC — had the capability to sail to the U.S.; a theory disputed by historians. “It is one of the greatest voyages of mankind and if anyone could have done it [before Columbus], it was the Phoenicians,” said Beale.
L’Armonial – Abdel Wahab El-Inglizi Street – Sector 62, Beirut, Lebanon
I wish other real estate developers would follow Greenstone’s example and try to preserve some of Beirut’s history by combining the traditional to the modern. What Greenstone has done is keep the facade of the original building and incorporate it into the design of the new building and the outcome, as you can see above, is amazing.
You can read more on L’Armonial and the project’s progress [Here].
I hope this project will inspire other real estate companies and our culture minister Gaby Layoun to avoid demolishing old houses, like Amine Maalouf’s residence, and try come up with alternatives similar to what L’Armonial did.
Consolidating the front facade
That’s a nice video to start the week with!
“For social scientists, for civil society at large, these few buildings represent the evidence of how ugly we were,” said Abdul-Halim Jabr, a Beirut-based architect and urban design consultant. “And a kind of lightning rod for some kind of truth and reconciliation.”
More than 30 years have passed since The Battle of the Hotels in Beirut, yet the heavily damaged Holiday Inn stands alone to remind us of the ugly Lebanese civil-war that resulted in the death of over 100,000 Lebanese. While other ravaged building are being restored, such as Beit Beirut (also known as Beit Barakat), any plans for restoring the Holiday Inn remain shrouded in uncertainty.
Aerial view of the Holiday Inn in 1974, courtesy of the Ministry of Tourism
The reason why I remembered the Holiday Inn is because of an article published on the National today on Beirut’s most famous bullet-scarred building and the future that awaits it. I posted few excerpts below but I recommend that you read the whole thing [Here].
I think it should be restored as a fully functional hotel that would include a cultural center and a Museum for the Memory of the War.
Christian gunmen in the Holiday Inn [Source]
Last month, the US$20million (Dh73.4m) Beit Beirut project to restore the venerated structure was officially kicked off by the city’s municipality, with the hope of opening by the end of 2014.
Not far across town, another empty, concrete shell looms over the city’s downtown, standing out near new developments in the prime real-estate district. The drab edifice – a relic of the early years of the civil war – is still known simply as the Holiday Inn, though it has not seen a paying guest in more than three decades. It remains a hulking reminder of the Battle of the Hotels during the civil war that left more than 100,000 Lebanese dead.
“The Holiday Inn cannot just be erased. Seeing it prevents people from getting rid of what they want to forget [about the civil war],” said Sara Fregonese, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of London who has been studying the building as part of her research on the impact of conflict on urban life in Lebanon. [TheNational]
Thank you Sana!
The Lebanese Jewish Community added on their Facebook Group old pictures of weddings and Bar Mitzvah ceremonies that were held at Beirut’s Maghen Abraham Synagogue.
Here are few selected pictures of the synagogue that has been almost fully renovated.
Picture taken by Nabil Ismail
I am not sure if they were making a movie or the journalist was at the right place at the right time.