Beirut To Break The Record For World’s Longest Continuing Party At 56 Hours

At a time when the biggest plates of hummus and biggest lemonade reserves aren’t enough, Beirut seems set to do what Beirut does best, and that’s throw the biggest party out there – literally this time.

In 2 weeks, between August 28th at 7PM and the dawn of August 30th, and under the patronage of Lebanon’s Ministry of Tourism, Lebanon will try to break the Guinness World Record for longest continuous party, at 56 hours. The previous record was held by Dublin, Ireland and was set at 54 hours.

The attempt to break the world record will take place at Nurai, which is located in Monot. In order to accomplish this task, Guinness will be monitoring the place for the set duration of time to make sure it’s continuously in “party” mode.

To help accomplish the task at hand, a bunch of artists, live bands, singers and DJs will be continuously performing for the duration of the party. The Ministry of Tourism will also be providing transportation to and from the site of the event.

I may not be there to participate and I sure am not the go-to person for any partying-related advice (God forbid), and I may also hate the notion of Beirut being synonymous with parties all the time but that has become as part of the city’s identity as its other more traditional landmarks. Is it a bad thing? Perhaps when it’s blinding the Lebanese masses from further critical thought of their own societies as long as Beirut is featured on some list somewhere as a Phoenix rising from the ashes party town.

The world record breaking attempt may not fix the horribly broken sectors that are maiming this country, but it is a good step from the Ministry of Tourism to further boost Beirut’s image as a go-to destination for party goers of the world, especially given that Lebanon hosted one of Tomorrowland’s live events a few weeks ago in July.

It’s especially beneficial at a time when Lebanon’s summer tourism season is seeing a boost with the political calm the country is experiencing and with Arab Gulf citizens slowly but surely returning to their habits of visiting the country to spend their summer vacations. Such an event will also contribute to setting Beirut apart from other cities in the Middle East when it comes to such lifestyle aspects, and – at least momentarily – help airbrush the country’s image, if only for those who are still susceptible to that.

Either way, I hope the event is a success. I hope those who do attend have a good time, and I sure hope the event’s organization is at the needed level for such a massive undertaking.

H/t Adeela.

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GQ or How White People Ruined Beirut’s Nightlife on Their Last Day on Earth

This is a guest post by Lary Bou Safi, a self-proclaimed stylist and nightlife ambassador. You can follow him on Facebook here.

In today’s episode of ‘Things White People Do’, GQ attempts to teach Westerners how to party in Beirut like it’s their last night. The idea seems nice, and Beirut IS, whether you like it or not, a party city, but the old saying ‘The Road to Hell is paved with good intentions’ couldn’t have been more fitting in that case.

Who in their right mind would consider B018 a plat de resistance on their last night on Earth? Who in their right mind would pass out at 3 am in Beirut on their last night on Earth.

Let me tell you how that laughable scenario should’ve gone.

Your last night on Earth is Saturday night. Which Saturday night? ANY Saturday night.

Dinner:

Before you go wild, you should always eat, and Mar Mikhael-Gemmayzeh is perfect for that, if it’s only for step 2 of your last night on Earth.

Whether you’d like to indulge in some Lebanese food at Em Nazih, Kahwet Leila or Enab, international food at Prune, À Coté or The Happy Prince, try Beirut’s best burger at The Smoking Bun or drool over Soul Food at Butcher’s BBQ Joint, that area, the Lower East Side of Beirut (yup, I’m using your metaphors, sue me!) is perfect if you’re feeling like having a bite before you plan next day’s hangover.

Whatever you’re planning on doing, never do it on an empty stomach. Now that your dinner plans are set, it’s time for pre-drinking.

Drinks:

Forget what any straight couple from the 09 (the area code, not the year) has told you. I’m sure they’re nice people, but they party like it’s Ayia Napa, circa 2010. And it’s 2017; the times they are a changin’.

I’m one of Beirut’s main party animals. Just ask anyone, and if I don’t go to Mothershucker, then neither should you. No one cool ever goes there on their last night on Earth. I’m sure it’s a nice place, but a gin/oyster bar before getting hammered? Really? That’s a recipe for disaster! No wonder you were passing out at 3am.

There are a lot of cool bars in Mar Mikhael, from Floyd The Dog to Vyvyan’s to Internazionale, and if you’re lucky enough, you might get invited to some cool private house party. Actually, all you have to do is be white & have an accent, and you’re there already. You’ll meet most of Beirut’s elite, and you’ll probably end up on some guestlist for step 3. You also might get to meet me, which could be the highlight of your night.

Party:

It’s 12:30 am, which means you should get going if you’re someone’s +1 if you don’t want to miss on any guestlist.

For the main course, you have 2 of Beirut’s party moguls: The Grand Factory and Überhaus. Both will make you forget your last name, with their taste in EDM and their love for extravagant lights & setups.

Whoever compared B018 to Berghain should be fired. You might get some of Berghain’s PG-13 action at Reunion, the elite’s room in The Grand Factory beside the perennial CU NXT SAT, or even inside Überhaus’ monster or under The Gärten’s dome (‘Haus’ summer location), but B018 is not what it used to be. You’ll be dancing there for hours to international DJs that would usually be playing in Berlin and Amsterdam.

After-Party:

It’s 4:30 am. It’s time for the after-party. How come no one ever told you about the after-party scene in Beirut? My personal favorite is usually Projekt, but Pre and Off & On deliver as well. You’d be dancing your ass off till 9 am and suffer from jet lag once you leave the premises. This step is almost as unmissable as the previous one.

After-after-party:

If you’re not a shmuck, which I doubt you’d be, since you’ve already made it through this phase, you have 3 options: go to Barbar or any food place that opens 24/7, tag along a bunch of party animals and finish at some house party with some techno, some booze & some Zaatar w Zeit takeout, or get lucky & go home with someone.

In all cases, why would anyone want to pass out on their last night on Earth, in a city that covers every aspect of nightlife? Next time you decide to write an article, just tag along someone who’s actually relevant in Beirut’s nightlife, perhaps then your article would be worth a read.
You can also follow Lary, the author of this post on Twitter: @larybs.

Kunhadi’s New Year’s Eve Ads

For those who like to party hard on NYE and then drive back home, Lebanon’s NGO Kunhadi has an ad right for you – and it is simply great.

The campaign has two components: a video and a poster, both of which are making the viral rounds because of their very sincere message and the simplicity with which they were made.

The posters:

Kunhadi - NYE Poster

For non-Lebanese readers, the ad says: your parents are staying up on New Year’s Eve for you to come back. Don’t drink and drive.

The YouTube video to accompany this poster is:

You have to give it to Kunhadi. Their ads are always poignant and emotional. I also remember their Mother’s Day ad was brilliant as well.

And on another note, is it just me or is the Lebanese marketing scene becoming way more creative than it used to be? First there was the Lebanese Brew ad, then there was the Nadine Labaki Johnnie Walker one, followed by Fransabank and then MAD Beirut. 

But no matter… hopefully the message in this video comes across. And what’s more important is for those who are going to parties to be aware not to get into cars with drunk stubborn friends who refuse to take a cab.

4 (Album Review) – Beyonce

Beyonce - 4 - album cover

I have to admit. When I first heard “Run The World” my expectations for this album by Beyonce sank lower than the Dead Sea. I am not the biggest Beyonce fan but I’ve come to appreciate her as an artist and come to like a few of her songs (Halo, Sweet Dreams, If I Were A Boy, Listen, Irreplaceable…) so it was with caution that I approached listening to this album.

And it is drastically different from what I expected it to be. If the norm is for an artist to release a sample of the album’s sound with the leading single, Beyonce simply shattered that. “Run The World” has nothing to do with any other song on the album. And that’s a very, very good thing.

4 is an album full of ballads where Beyonce showcases her amazing vocals. She’s the kind of artists that’s always underestimated when it comes to her vocal chops, mostly because she caters to an audience that doesn’t really care about such things. So with 4, she shows impeccable growth in that department and she delivers the album that she wanted to make, regardless of how much it would sell or how well radio would respond to its singles.

4 is also an album that could well be the exact theme opposite of the Adele’s brilliant “21”. Where the latter was an album about sweet heartbreak, 4 is an album about falling in love. Even the heartbreak ballads on 4 are songs about how Beyonce still has love for her significant other.

The album opens with the gut-wrenching ballad “1+1”, which I reviewed earlier after Beyonce debuted it in an impeccable performance on American Idol. And if you thought that performance was great, a video of Beyonce singing the song in her dressing room for select friends and family where she was even better, showing that what you get on stage is who she is – not just a synthetically improved gimmick.

The album continues to a song titled “I Care,” a balland about Beyonce’s significant other not caring about her anymore but she can’t help it that she still cares about him. On “I Miss You,” Beyonce sings: “It hurts my pride to tell how I feel but I still need to… I miss you.” Another album highlight.

“Best Thing I Never Had” is the album’s second – and much better – single, where Beyonce declares to the person she was interested it that he doesn’t deserve her tears and she was the best thing he never had.

A change of tempo in the upward direction comes in the form of “Party”, a song that I cannot wrap my head around, mostly because it feels like sub-quality compared to the songs around it. But for those who like dancey Beyonce sound, this song is for you.

On “Rather Die Young,” another vocal-showcase ballad, Beyonce declares to her love interest that even though he smoked too much and drove too fast, he gave her a rush – made her feel like she was seventeen – and she’d rather die young than live her life without him.

“Start Over” is another album highlight where Beyonce acknowledges that the relationship reached a very rough patch, but she can’t help that she still loves the guy. And then she invites him to “start over” because they can’t let their good love die.

“Love On Top” is another declaration of love on the album where Beyonce’s love interest put her love on the top list of his priorities. How he’s the one she always calls, how his lips taste like champagne, etc…

I cannot also wrap my head around “Countdown,” another song for uptempo Beyonce fans. The song is basically a countdown from ten to one that ends with him being the one.

“End of Time” is rumored to be a strong contender for the upcoming single off 4. Many people are loving this song but I feel the album has many stronger songs but I do get the radio potential in this. And after all, you need a strong radio performance of a single to sell the album. On this song, Beyonce declares that she’ll “love you until the end of time.” The song is filled with a tribal-like rhythm.

“I Was Here” is the album’s most personal song. It is a testament of Beyonce’s achievements, what she has accomplished and what she still wants to do: “I wanna leave my footprints on the sands of time… When I leave this world, I’ll leave no regrets. Give something to remember so they won’t forget I was here, I lived, I loved. I did, I’ve done everything that I wanted…”

And the album is concluded with “Run The World (Girls),” which after the series of brilliant songs that precede it sounds like an out of place song on a much superior record. You start thinking what Beyonce was thinking when she released this song as the album’s lead single when she had much stronger songs that could have helped her sell the album more.

It’s always refreshing when a capable artist decides to deliver true artistic songs that display their talents and not just some brainless pop songs that only get you to dance. 4 is an album with many influences, the most prominent of which is an 80s RnB sound. It feels to be a natural evolutionary step for an artist who made her career by walking across genre lines. 4 is a great album that could be considered as Beyonce’s best.

Songs to download:

1+1, I Care, I Miss You, Best Thing I Never Had, I Was Here.

The Lebanese Forces Pioneering

On April 2nd, the Lebanese Forces commemorated the party’s disbanding.

As part of the proceedings, many people spoke about the importance of this party in the lives of many Lebanese and its vital role in the many years that it has been active. I will not go into those speeches, but they were very engaging. At one point a priest told a story about a woman who asked to go into a solitary cell at a convent. Three days later, she came out and told this priest how horrible those three days were and she wondered how the Lebanese Forces leader, Samir Geagea, could handle staying in worse conditions for more than seven years at the time. Geagea ended up being imprisoned in solitary confinement for over 11 years.

The Lebanese Forces have always been a highly organized party, as evident by their many events and the acclaim they get based on their level of organization.

However, that’s not where they’re pioneering. After all, many other parties in Lebanon are highly organized, albeit in a different way.

The Lebanese Forces are set to become the first party in Lebanon where the base elects the party’s leader. And that to me, is pioneering.

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