Bars in the Middle East might sound like a strange idea to some Westerners, as alcohol is banned in many of the region’s countries (like Saudi Arabia and Kuwait), but Middle East bar concepts run the gamut from industrial grunge to idyllic beach scenes.
1. Industrial Scene at dic/ta/teur in Beirut
This bar sits where the front lines of the Lebanese civil war raged. The designers of dic/ta/teur kept to the battle-scarred history of the building, recycling trash found around the neighborhood to create an industrial feel, softening the theme with plants that grow around the bar.
2. Refuge(e) at B018 in Beirut
Standing in the Karantina (or “quarantined”) area of Beirut where 20,000 refugees once lived, B018 maintains the area’s cloistered identity. What might seem, from the street, to simply be an empty parking lot, opens up into a luxurious bar – with a view of the sky provided by the building’s iconic retractable roof.
3. Celebrity Chic at Mo*vida in Dubai
A celebrity bastion from London, Mo*vida’s Dubai branch provides a V.I.P. experience for its high-roller guests in the UAE. With a sleek design evoking images of fashion runways and an even flow of top shelf champagne, guests spending over $54,000 in one night at this super club is not unusual.
From London to Dubai, Cirque Le Soir mixes circus acts, musical performance, and burlesque into a memorable night of debauch spectacle.
Sky View, on the 15th floor of La Cigale Hotel, captures what it does in just two words. The outdoor lounge gives guests an awe-inspiring look at Doha’s skyline.
Located in Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, Armani Privé draws an after-hours crowd of playboys and fashionistas with its impressive Downtown Dubai address and “fashionable” branding. Giorgio Armani’s Dubai club features VIP areas, resident and international guest DJs, as well as a spectacular LED light show on the dance floor.
An outpost of the Buddha Bar, Bushido attempts to import the Samurai code and aesthetic to Bahrain. From the armor on the wall to vintage Japanese artifacts around the bar, Bushido wants its guests to feel as if they are in ancient Japan with modern amenities.
For those seeking libations by the ocean, Breezes Beach Bar and Terrace offers breath-taking vistas of the Indian Ocean. Its open, airy design proves that relaxation is on the menu at this bar.
223 offers guests some of the best mixology Israel has to offer, all while sitting in a Western-style saloon complete with wooden bar and arm-garter-wearing bartenders. Owned and operated by Ariel Leizgold, the 2006 Finlandia Vodka Cocktail Cup Champion (for Best Pre-Dinner Drink), this bar speaks to the speakeasy trend.