Hotel Tanios

Then & Now

Explore Aley's Architectural Heritage
aley hotel tanios 1940s
tanios hotel aley in 1940s
hotel tanios aley advertising restaurant

Tanios

In the 1950s, Aley’s Tanios Hotel was a landmark, hosting tourists from around the globe, foreign dignitaries, famous artists and celebrities, including Om Kalthoum, Farid el Atrach and his sister Asmahan.

The hotel carried the name of its founder, Tanios ash-Chemali. Working as a waiter in a cafe in Beirut’s Al-Burj district, ash-Chemali borrowed the money from friends and relatives to buy the land and later build the hotel, which contributed significantly to Aley’s fame, both locally and regionally.

During the civil war, the building was damaged by shelling and some parts of its main facade collapsed. It was later partly restored by the government, but never re-opened.

Tanios ash-Chemali was unmarried, and (as is frequently the case in Lebanon) his inheritors were unable to reach an agreement to restore the property to its former glory.

mir majid arslan 1954 at tanios hotel aley

Going ... Going ...

In 2007, a Saudi investor purchased the Tanios Hotel for $6 million from the heirs of the Tanios and Mekanna families.

The following year, in 2008, another slice of Aley’s heritage was demolished, with plans to build a modern hotel complex.

In 2009, the vacant land once occupied by Tanios Hotel was resold to Al Rayyan for Projects Development, a Qatari real estate venture, for an estimated $12 million (a handsome return for the Saudi investor).

A five-star hotel development is now well under construction.

The project licensing fees paid to the Aley Municipality were around $750,000.

 

tanios hotel aley demolition
aley demolition of tanios hotel

Tanios

With the new development, Hotel Tanios will keep its original name, and be paired with that of a global hotel management chain.

Built on a land area of 6,200 square metres, the hotel will be constructed on a surface area of about 4,500 square meters, with a 90-meter long façade overlooking Aley’s souk.

 

hotel tanios aley artists sketch
tanios hotel aley new building from main street

Old meets

Hotel Tanios will consist of a 33,750 sqm built-up area comprising three underground floors, one ground floor, and eight above-ground floors with 156 rooms and suites.

The hotel will feature underground parking lots, pools, gymnasiums, along with other recreational facilities and host a cinema, ballrooms, and shopping malls.

Hotel Tanios’ new architects have pledged to pay tribute to its legacy and history – recalling its former heritage but with modern designs.

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tanios hotel aley construction site
tanios hotel aley from main street under construction
tanios hotel aley under construction
tanios hotel aley aerial view under construction
Heather & Sami Eljurdi

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