For all those who have been wondering about the new Aïshti Complex on the Jal el Dib highway, this is the new building for the The Aïshti Foundation and it’s opening on October 25. The Aïshti Foundation is part of a 35,000 square-meter complex that will include fashion boutiques, a curated bookshop, restaurants, cafes, a spa and a rooftop bar with an amazing sea view. More importantly, it will include one of the largest contemporary art museum in the region. In fact, the huge complex which was designed by Adjaye Associates will be dedicated to presenting contemporary art exhibitions and artworks from the 2,000-strong private collection of Tony Salamé, CEO of Aïshti.

Aishti Foundation rendering south-west view

A Contemporary art museum designed by British architect David Adjaye

The opening exhibition will be organised by Massimiliano Gioni, the artistic director of the New Museum in New York and will feature more “than 100 works by international contemporary artists including, among others: Etel Adnan, Ziad Antar, Tauba Auerbach, Agostino Bonalumi, Carol Bove, Kerstin Brätsch, Daniel Buren, Enrico Castellani, Urs Fischer, Wade Guyton, Camille Henrot, Glenn Ligon, Lucy McKenzie, Giuseppe Penone, Gianni Piacentino, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Seth Price, R.H. Quaytman, Gerhard Richter, Pamela Rosenkraz, Rayanne Tabet, Wolfgang Tillmans, Kari Upson, Andra Ursuta, Christopher Wool, Danh Vo, Charline Von Heyl, Michael Williams and Akram Zaatari among many others”. More than 4,000 square meters of exhibition space will be offered in the new building.

Aishti Foundation rendering - Interior

We definitely need more cultural and art centers in Lebanon and what Aïshti is doing is great. There are even talks about building a museum of Modern and contemporary Lebanese art in central Beirut by 2020 that Salamé is also involved in, along with Zaha Hadid (who’s on the jury) and Hans Ulrich Obrist and Julia Peyton-Jones of London’s Serpentine Galleries so let’s keep our fingers crossed!

Here are few renders of the new Aishti complex and check out this drone-filmed 360 degree aerial video.

Aishti Foundation rendering - Aerial Landscape

PS: I was told that Skybar may open on the rooftop but these are just rumors for now.