Celebrating fashion in Beirut
A group of edgy fashion designers and Lebanon’s ALBA fashion school are shining a light on the possibilities for the next generation of creatives.
Called to the bar: Dragonfly
Fondly known as Nino by the regular customers, 28-year-old Nassif Aramouni started working at Dragonfly six years ago and has moved his way up to become chief bartender. Not an easy feat for someone who studied aircraft maintenance and had little experience behind the counter. Nino always serves a glass of water with each cocktail. As he says, “It’s not about getting drunk, but enjoying the drink.”
Kamal’s Table – A Recipe for Lebanon
Kamal Mouzawak, chef, writer and founder of the Souk El Tayeb farmers’ market, has made it his life’s mission to celebrate the regional produce and cuisine of Lebanon. As he prepares a feast for friends in his Batroun summerhouse, Monocle discovers the heart and soul in the culinary traditions that reflect his country, in and out of conflict.
Monocle explores how Beirut's redevelopment has become a threat to the city's historic streets and neighbourhoods.
Arab Image Foundation
With a mission to track down, restore and share images of day-to-day life in the region, a valuable social history of the Arab world is being chronicled by the Beirut-based Arab Image Foundation. Monocle travels to Lebanon to visit a photographic archive and memory bank.
Maison Rabih Kayrouz
Fashion designer Rabih Kayrouz is one of the most sought-after couturiers in Lebanon and Paris, and one of the few designers to be accepted into the elite French Haute Couture season. Monocle visits his Beirut atelier to watch him work and travels to Paris to film his latest collection.
The Bookseller of Beirut
As anywhere, Lebanon's independent bookstores have slowly been eaten up by big, bland chains. Set in the once thriving district of Hamra, Esquire stands out as a slightly dusty, but proud, pillar of independence. Today its income comes largely from newspapers, magazines and books on Lebanon's modern history. Yet what makes Esquire so charming is the treasure trove of racy paperback novels from the seventies. Monocle's Robert Bound reports.
Q&A: Lady Yvonne Cochrane
Beirut's Christian quarter of Ashrafieh has weathered civil war, terrorist assassinations and the recent Hezbollah-Israeli conflict. But today the hill-top neighbourhood is once again under threat, this time from developers who are destroying the old palaces to build high-rises for the country's internationally mobile elite. As Lebanon faces yet another uncertain summer, Monocle editor-in-chief Tyler Brûlé pays a visit to Lady Yvonne Cochrane, doyenne of the Christian East and owner of one of the most alluring palaces in the eastern Mediterranean, to talk urban planning, architecture and the future of her country.