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Hamra Urban Gardens (HUG) opened its doors in August 2016 and is vibrant community featuring a hotel, gym (24/7 Muscle Up Workshop), restaurant (Bayt Em Nazih), and a rooftop pool and bar (Pool d'Etat). It the cross-town cousin of Saifi Urban Gardens; created, owned and managed by the same team.
HUG is located just off Hamra Street - Beirut’s most vibrant and cosmopolitan thoroughfare - in half of Estral Center, and fills a space was originally designed as a hotel, which was never completed due to the Lebanese Civil War began. Instead of hotel guests, a series of refugees and militias occupied the rooms throughout the war. As life in Hamra returned to normal the hotel in Estral sat empty, a casualty of war yet to be revived.
Renovations and repairs began in January 2016 by a team of craftsmen, most of whom have been working together for years on various projects including Saifi Urban Gardens, led by the self-taught architect and owner Mac McClenahan and his long running partner and operational wizard Nazih Dirani. The result is a handmade blend of old and new, classic design and urban practicality, traditional methods and modern materials staffed by a team of young energetic and friendly people happy to welcome newcomers to Beirut as well as the Beirut locals who call HUG their second home.
HUG continues to change and grow like the lush forest on its roof. Come experience another side of Beirut.