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Beirut's Tourist Season Begins

FPO_BEI_032
Story by Ed Salvato; above: Beirut party scene by Paul Thuysbaert

Since the end of Lebanon's 15-year civil war, Beirut has increasingly become a go-to destination for more adventurous travelers. The brief war in 2006 between Hezbollah and Israel caused a momentary pause in Beirut's relentless march towards the main travel stage. But it seems that with the arrival of the country's first Four Seasons hotel property, Beirut may be ready for its close up. This glittering 25-story property debuted in January 2010, close to downtown and featuring the top-notch, attentive (friendly but professional) service the brand is known for.

Among the intrepid travelers heading to Lebanon are gays and lesbians from throughout the Middle East and from other Arab countries, gay Europeans and to a smaller degree gay Americans. After Israel, Lebanon probably has one of the most intriguing nightlife scenes for gay travelers in the Middle East.

With the new Four Seasons, pictured below left, a growing array of bars and clubs available, gay-popular 250X250
restaurants, gay galleries, a few big gay events, and even an in-bound gay tour operator available to organize a gay-friendly visit -- Bertho Makso's Leb Tour, which organizes among other tours and events, a gay Arab bear party, the poster for which is pictured at right -- time may be right for visitors from the United States to put Beirut on their must-go gaydar.

FPO_BEI_053 Last summer, The New York Times dubbed Beirut "The Provincetown of the Middle East." While you probably won't want to go skipping down Beirut's streets holding your partner's hand as you can in Ptown, it certainly has become a spot where gay locals and visitors feel much more open compared to most other countries in the vicinity.

In another sign of the emergence of Beirut as a gay-popular destination, the IGLTA is organizing a symposium October 13 through 18 in Beirut.



Additional reading material and resources:

FPO_BEI_032
Story by Ed Salvato; above: Beirut party scene by Paul Thuysbaert

Since the end of Lebanon's 15-year civil war, Beirut has increasingly become a go-to destination for more adventurous travelers. The brief war in 2006 between Hezbollah and Israel caused a momentary pause in Beirut's relentless march towards the main travel stage. But it seems that with the arrival of the country's first Four Seasons hotel property, Beirut may be ready for its close up. This glittering 25-story property debuted in January 2010, close to downtown and featuring the top-notch, attentive (friendly but professional) service the brand is known for.

Among the intrepid travelers heading to Lebanon are gays and lesbians from throughout the Middle East and from other Arab countries, gay Europeans and to a smaller degree gay Americans. After Israel, Lebanon probably has one of the most intriguing nightlife scenes for gay travelers in the Middle East.

With the new Four Seasons, pictured below left, a growing array of bars and clubs available, gay-popular 250X250
restaurants, gay galleries, a few big gay events, and even an in-bound gay tour operator available to organize a gay-friendly visit -- Bertho Makso's Leb Tour, which organizes among other tours and events, a gay Arab bear party, the poster for which is pictured at right -- time may be right for visitors from the United States to put Beirut on their must-go gaydar.

FPO_BEI_053 Last summer, The New York Times dubbed Beirut "The Provincetown of the Middle East." While you probably won't want to go skipping down Beirut's streets holding your partner's hand as you can in Ptown, it certainly has become a spot where gay locals and visitors feel much more open compared to most other countries in the vicinity.

In another sign of the emergence of Beirut as a gay-popular destination, the IGLTA is organizing a symposium October 13 through 18 in Beirut.



Additional reading material and resources:


Story by Ed Salvato; above: Beirut party scene by Paul Thuysbaert

Since the end of Lebanon's 15-year civil war, Beirut has increasingly become a go-to destination for more adventurous travelers. The brief war in 2006 between Hezbollah and Israel caused a momentary pause in Beirut's relentless march towards the main travel stage. But it seems that with the arrival of the country's first Four Seasons hotel property, Beirut may be ready for its close up. This glittering 25-story property debuted in January 2010, close to downtown and featuring the top-notch, attentive (friendly but professional) service the brand is known for.

Among the intrepid travelers heading to Lebanon are gays and lesbians from throughout the Middle East and from other Arab countries, gay Europeans and to a smaller degree gay Americans. After Israel, Lebanon probably has one of the most intriguing nightlife scenes for gay travelers in the Middle East.

With the new Four Seasons, pictured below left, a growing array of bars and clubs available, gay-popular 
restaurants, gay galleries, a few big gay events, and even an in-bound gay tour operator available to organize a gay-friendly visit -- Bertho Makso's Leb Tour, which organizes among other tours and events, a gay Arab bear party, the poster for which is pictured at right -- time may be right for visitors from the United States to put Beirut on their must-go gaydar.

Last summer, The New York Times dubbed Beirut "The Provincetown of the Middle East." While you probably won't want to go skipping down Beirut's streets holding your partner's hand as you can in Ptown, it certainly has become a spot where gay locals and visitors feel much more open compared to most other countries in the vicinity.

In another sign of the emergence of Beirut as a gay-popular destination, the IGLTA is organizing a symposium October 13 through 18 in Beirut.



Additional reading material and resources:

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