One of the oldest hotels in Lebanon (if not the oldest) stands still in the city of Baalbeck. It can be found right next to the ruins of the ancient City of the Sun.
Facing the old Heliopolis structures, Palmyra Hotel was originally built by a businessman from Greek descents.
The hotel hosted important personalities and celebrities including jazz singer Nina Simone, French president General Charles De Gaulle, and Albert Einstein.
Palmyra served as an exotic retreat for tourists from all over the world who came to visit the famous city of Baalbek and enjoyed the oriental feels the hotel offers.
The impressive Lebanese exterior and interior architecture the hotel has makes it a magnet for European tourists who are drawn to that ‘One Thousand and One Night’ atmosphere.
Baalbek Festival attendees would also check in the hotel as it was and still is the closest to the archaeological site where festivities take place. Eating, drinking and partying were non-stop activities in this beautiful place.
This legendary hotel offers a journey to the past when Lebanon was thriving and called “Eastern Switzerland”.
Palmyra never for once closed its doors to visitors despite the troubles and tensions the Bekaa Valley area recently experienced due to its proximity to the Syrian borders.
Even during the most violent days of Lebanon’s Civil War, the hotel welcomed guests.
The most distinguished are immortalized with signed black-and-white pictures on the Palmyra’s wall of fame and include the likes of Turkish President Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, and French writer Jean Cocteau.
Cocteau, who stayed for a month in 1960, left several sketches that now hang on the walls of the building.
This untouched Lebanese gem is a destination you must visit whether you’re a local or a tourist!