Driving in the city, under the scorching sun, we stop at an assuming little ice cream shop on the ground floor of a rundown building carrying bullets that echo of a past life that reverberates of times where bombs ripped the city’s skies. Echoes that no one hears anymore amongst the city’s cacophony of sounds.
Couched in the comforts of boutique plushness and nestled in the heart of Ashrafieh, the land’s historic multicultural heritage is captured in the picturesque Albergo Hotel, a refurbished Ottoman house located in the charming and traditional old quarter of Ashrafieh on Abdel Wahab el Inglisi Street. The Albergo Hotel, literally meaning the hotel in Italian, is a world in-between two worlds and the only deluxe boutique hotel in Beirut, preserving the Lebanese style and soul, reflecting a multifaceted country, at the crossroads of the Orient and the West.
In between its winding streets where the sounds of the city runs amongst its trees scattered here and there, Ashrafieh is definitely a love affair. Its luxurious apartment buildings combined with its renovated traditional houses and the dilapidated ones, its 50s, 60, 70s, and 80s buildings all seem like a charming movie set of a loved Beirut.
House of Zejd, meaning the house of olive oil, is a small boutique selling everything related to olive, located in the heart of Achrafieh, on Mar Mitr Street. Zejd, olive oil in ancient Phoenician, highlights the rich historical background of the Lebanese oleic traditions related to its Phoenician origins. In fact, the Mediterranean coasts of Syria, Mount Lebanon and Palestine appear to be the main original home of the wild olive tree where it is extremely abundant. Over time its cultivation developed considerably spreading along with the expansion of the Phoenician civilization.
Some places exude elegance and a certain refinement just by there mere esthetic; such is the case of this beautiful Lebanese restaurant in the heart of Achrafieh. Liza restaurant occupies the second floor of former Abdallah Bustros’ 19th-century palace. Devised by designer Maria Ousseimi, LIZA’s historically charged, romance infused interior is a reflection of a very tangible reverie of old glamour infused with modern interior that flows from one room to the next.
L’Atelier du Miel, located in Tabaris – Achrafieh, is solely dedicated to Lebanese honey and honey products. With their common passion for nature, craftsmanship and good taste, they produce pure honey with only natural methods. In its boutique, they share their passion for beekeeping by offering more than 30 different types of honey produced in Lebanon as well as a variety of honey-based products.