One of the most memorable birthday weekends to date. This was the first time I celebrated my birthday in my favourite city in the world, Beirut. To make things even better, the Le Gray Hotel in Downtown Beirut, one of the city’s most luxurious hotels, opened its doors and welcomed me a suite as a special birthday gift.
My usual trips to Beirut comprise of hours on the road, endless family gatherings and impulse shopping. With the majority of the day spent shredding the ski slopes of Faraya, the contemporary-classic hotel became my place of happiness, where I would sit back and relax.
Located in the heart of the Beirut Central District overlooking Martyrs’ Square, you are within a two-minute walk of the city’s shoreline, downtown luxury stores and the gastronomic lures of the Gemmayze neighbourhood. Here the dazzling glamour, glitz and joie de vivre of modern Beirut plays out against a richly historic backdrop, from Roman to Phoenician to the traditional Levantine.
The five-star hotel is made up of 87 contemporary rooms and suites spread out over four floors. Many of the rooms can be interconnected for those travelling together. With such great hospitality, the hotel booked me into one of their spacious executive suites with two terraces overlooking the gorgeous city. The architecture ensures all rooms and suites are soaked in Mediterranean sun with the central floor-to-ceiling, glass-topped atrium.
The vast variety of restaurants and bars within the hotel property took me by complete surprise. Le Gray possesses some of the cities most vibrant and visited restaurants and bars. Let’s start off with Gordon’s Cafe & Terrace adjacent to the lobby of the hotel. If you are from Beirut, this cafe is the go-to place when you want to catch up with friends. You might even bump into a celebrity or two while sipping on your cappuccino.
Indigo on the Roof is where we devoured our delicious breakfast on both mornings during our stay. With a three hundred and sixty degree view of the city, I highly recommend you take a table outside. Oh, order the french toast as well, it will not disappoint!
If you are after a more chilled and relaxing setting to kick back, you have the cigar lounge as well as the pool lounge. The pool lounge takes pool lounges to a whole new level. With an incredible infinity pool overlooking the seaside and Square, I don’t think anyone would want to leave this place during summer.
In come the bars! Cherry on the Rooftop and Bar ThreeSixty are absolutely pumping on the weekends. With a lively ambiance, great music and like-minded crowd, it’s the perfect place to kickstart your night.
On a final note, the level of service throughout the entire hotel was nothing but five-star. Over the past year I have traveled to some of Europe and the Middle East’s most luxurious hotels, but Le Gray Hotel takes the prize for such astounding service (not bias!).
With so many years of civil war and political turmoil, people are still choosing Beirut as their next vacation destination, and I urge you to be one of them! You also know where to stay now 😉
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