CONDÉ NAST TRAVELER Top 25 Cities in the World Readers' Choice Awards

Beirut is one of Condé Nast Traveler's Readers' Choice Awards picks for "Top 25 Cities in the World"!



Readers' Choice Rating: 81.0

The capital of Lebanon has "much to offer the adventurous traveler." Find "exotic cuisine and cocktails" at the "most exclusive clubs in the world" in what one reader calls "the Paris of the Middle East." This city offers a "tapestry of sects, religions, and lifestyles that provide a feast for the mind of the intellectual."


"I am not neutral" by Yehia Jaber - لست محايدًا" يحيى جابر"

لست محايدًا

.أنحاز الى مريول المدرسة ضد الكفن
.أنحاز الى الحديقة ضد الحريقة
.أنحاز الى الفنادق ضد الخنادق
.أنحاز الى قهوة الصباح ضد قهوة المعزّين عن روحي
.أنحاز الى وليمة في مطعم، ضد وليمة مأتم وتحويلي الى طعام لمائدة الآخرين
...لست محايدًا

.أنحاز الى الكنافة الطرابلسية ضد الذين يحوّلون شوارعها الى صينية من قطر الدم
.أنحاز إلى منقوشة الضاحية ضد كل الأفران الجوالة التي تخبزنا
...لست محايدًا

.أنا طرف، أنا فريق، أنا منتخب، أنا جهة، أنا كل الجهات... وكل الجهات تقول: لبنان بوصلتي في هذه العاطفة
...ولبنان ليس وطنًا، إنه فكرة... قد أجدها في لبنان، وربما أجدها في كندا. وربما أجدها في المريخ
.حتى كتابة هذه السطور أنا أنحاز الى لبنان جمهورية على مشارف ولادة
.جمهورية في غرف الانتظار
.جمهورية أنحاز إليها حتى ولو في المنام، لأنتزعها من كوابيس الآخرين
...لست محايدًا

أنحاز الى عارضة الأزياء ضد الذين يصمّمون على تمزيق بلادنا وجعل المقصات تعمل على قصقصتنا، وتحويل علمنا الى خرقة، والجبال الى ثياب ممزّقة من صنوبرها وأرزها.. وباقي الأزياء
.أنحاز الى كأس المساء ضد السكارى بأفكارهم الروحانية، حيث روحانيتهم تقوم على زهق أرواح الآخرين
...لست محايدًا

.لن أحيد عن أجمل خطأ يدعى لبنان
...ضد كل صواب، ضد كل صحّ يظنّ نفسه صحّ منذ الولادة

يحيى جابر-

I am not neutral

I side with the school uniform against the shroud.
I side with the garden against the bonfire.
I side with hotels against the trenches.
I side with the morning coffee against the coffee of those mourning my soul.
I side with a feast at a restaurant against a funeral feast and my transformation into food onto the table of others.
I am not neutral...

I side with the knafeh of Tripoli against those who turn its streets into a tray of blood syrup.
I side with a man’oushe of the Dahiyeh against all the mobile furnaces  that bake us.
I am not neutral...

I am a party, I am a team, I am elected, I am one sides, I am all sides... And all sides says: Lebanon is my compass in this fervor.
Lebanon is not a homeland, it's an idea... I may find it in Lebanon, and perhaps in Canada. Perhaps I'd find it on Mars...
As of this writing, I side with the Republic of Lebanon at the crowning of  birth.
A republic in the waiting room.
A republic I side with, even if in a dream, to wrench it out of the nightmares of others.
I am not neutral...

I side with a fashion model against those determined to tear our country, make shears that cut us apart, and turn our flag into a rag, and our mountains into shreds of pine and cedar... And the rest of fashion.
I side with an evening glass against the drunkards with their spiritual notions, where spirituality is based on wasting the lives of others.
I am not neutral...

I will not abandon the side of that most beautiful mistake called Lebanon.
Against all righteousness, against every right that thinks itself right since birth...

-Yehia Jaber
(translated by Ashraf Osman)


لكن رح نرجع? Are We Going Back?

On this, the 37th anniversary of the start of the Lebanese War, I am haunted by an old Fairuz song, "Rej'et El Aasfoura"... Haunted with a distant and detached sense of nostalgia, the way one misses a loved one years after their passing: with remembrance, but not much pain. I'm haunted by this song, not with cynicism--strangely enough--but with much skepticism. Years after the War had started and ended, and the wars after it have started and ended, do I still believe in the "True Lebanon"? And do I still believe that it's coming? Like the millions of Lebanese living outside of Lebanon--far more than those living inside it--I have made a choice, and the choice is essentially a skeptical one: I don't believe in this "Great Country". And yet, this country is part of me, and I part of it, whether I like it or not. Like one coming to terms with a deeply flawed parent, I have come to peace with this country; may it rest in peace...


Letters to Beirut from Friends Worldwide

To Beirut with Love, is a worldwide cultural project in a format of a huge artistic book or installation made out of your letters and envelops sent to Beirut, World Capital of the Book.
Write or draw something about what you feel, think or imagine about Beirut.

Send it to:
To Beirut with Love
c/o Ginane Bacho
Beirut, Lebanon.

For more information, visit the Facebook Event for the project at:

إلى بيروت مع الحب ، مشروع ثقافي في جميع أنحاء العالم في شكل كتاب أو تركيب فني ضخم مصنوع من مغلفات رسائل الخاصة بكم و التي ترسلوها إلى بيروت ، عاصمة للكتاب.
للإشتراك الرجاء كتابة أو رسم شيء حول ما تشعر به أو ما تتخيله عندما نفكر في بيروت ، و أرسل إلى:

إلى بيروت مع الحب
# جنان باشو
صندوق. بريد 14-6086 ،
بيروت ، لبنان.

للمزيد من المعلومات، الرجاء زيارة صفحة الحدث للمشروع على فيسبوك عند

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Beirut is No.1!

The New York Times has voted Beirut the No.1 place to go in 2009!

In a feature called "The 44 Places to Go in 2009", Beirut was first according to both the NY Times recommendations as well as reader recommendations. "From the Aegean Sea to Zambia, this year’s most compelling destinations are awash in sublime landscapes, cutting-edge art, gala music festivals, and stylish new resorts. To vote for your favorites, click 'recommend'." So make sure you keep Beirut No. 1 by casting your vote!

And make sure to check out the NY Times' Lebanon Travel Guide!



Despair, Inc.

(No comment)



Feb 2005: Ex-PM Rafik Hariri
April 2005: MP Bassel Fleihan
June 2005: Anti-Syria journalist Samir Kassir
June 2005: Ex-Communist leader George Hawi
Dec 2005: Anti-Syria MP Gebran Tueni
Nov 2006: Industry Minister Pierre Gemayel
June 2007: Anti-Syria MP Walid Eido
Sep 2007: Anti-Syria MP Antoine Ghanim
Dec 2007: Army Gen Francois al-Hajj
Jan 2008: Police investigator Wissam Eid
Sep 2008: Pro-Syria MP Saleh Aridi

Provided by BBC

Ahlan wa sahlan

Hi again, looks like it is back to a pretty solitary experience here at LBF. That's cool in a way. We can revamp a bit and think about ways to improve the site. I had to get some kind of header.jpg up here because it was just too much to see things in such disrepair. So, a minor temporary fix until we can figure out what's next. Hope it's ok.

I initially made LBF to make a platform whereby a community of people could be made where one wasn't. And I have a feeling that good things have come of it even in the short-term. Even if this place just becomes a list of links, a portal to Lebanon, it's also ok. We could also be more ambitious and think of more creative things to accomplish. But inshallah, ....yimkin bookrah ..ha ha :)

I'm on meditteranean time no matter where I am. While I love to accomplish things, sometimes things need to develop organically. And that's what I hope we have here. Real relationships hoisting up digital connections instead of the converse.

Let's have a discussion. Tell me how you want this site to improve and if it's doing exactly what you think it should be doing, then great!

Let's just see :)