Topless in Beirut – b 018

Topless in Beirut or Orpheus in the Underworld

Beirut – better known as a hotbed of radical “elements” with the aim to boycott of any order and state formation. We remember the Foreign Legion and the U.S. Marines, who tried in the 80s to bring order. We remember the tragic bombings of the multinational headquarters, which were completely destroyed and led to the withdrawal of multinational forces.

Even now, Lebanon does not belong to the wellness goals of burned employee. Beirut was once different. The capital of Lebanon was regarded as cosmopolitan, as European- Arabian melting pot. “Paris of the Middle East”, Beirut was called before the civil war raged between 1975-1991.

Even if normality is not possible to speak , Beirut developed slowly into what it was once. A port has always a special atmosphere. The history, from the Phoenicians to this day, cannot be hidden, it appears again and again. The herewith related properties of traditional liberalism and cosmopolitanism are therefore naturally in Beirut. Are philosophy and laicism in such a way existent, it is reflected in various areas – including in architecture.

The architect Bernard Khoury has created with the Music Club b 018 a building that reflects the recent developments in Beirut. Built was also the “Groundraker” in an area, that was created as a protection zone during the civil war by the French. Later, there came up slums; they were destroyed later on at the end of the 70s.The resulting strip still runs like a scar through Beirut. The scale underground club is considered as one of the prominent clubs. The comparison to “Orpheus in the Underworld” is close, but says the architect himself that the reason for moving in depth was also a safety issue. Vertical structures are ideal targets for artillery shells and other explosives airworthy. Thus, the club offers besides entertainment , a certain protective function in a city that is going to find their identity again.






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