Architecture is a visual art and the buildings speak for themselves.– Julia Morgan
Beirut is considered to be a language, and just by walking through the neighborhood you will find yourself speaking that language, where architecture gives you a sense of its beauty and elaborates everyday acts.
Every building has a strong accent that expresses each designer’s personality throughout the timeline. As Juhani Pallasmaa once said “The door handle is the handshake of the building.” A philosophy where it emphasizes that everyone may have a different view and may not want to discover what lies beyond the door. And that is exactly what happened to me, something triggered my friend tzesika and I to visit Bechara el-Khoury Abandoned Palace in Zokak el-Blat, Beirut, Lebanon.
Nowadays, the palace is owned by the municipality and is being occupied by a carpenter that claims to be paying rent to them. Originally, the palace used to be in one of the high esteemed neighborhoods, Zokak el-Blat, that contained many villas and palaces. Essentially, given the name Zokak el-Blat, it was the first area to have a paved road.
With all the destruction, we were still able of being impressed and amazed of what was left of the 19th century mansion interior. I started imagining how the living room was using the remains of the decorative classic cornice at the corners of the blue painted ceiling. What made the ceiling even more beautiful were the extruded floral patterns made of gypsum.What I loved about the living room were the two long columns that gave a grand entrance to a big terrace. The wooden shutters of the window were painted in turquoise with beautiful gold handles which coincidentally complemented the color of my dress.
This palace made me realize the rich history and culture that Beirut has hidden and waiting for me to discover.
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Location: Bechara el-Khoury Abandoned Palace in Zokak el-Blat, Beirut, Lebanon
Photos by: tzesikailiovitsphotography