Rabih K

Jbeil District to ban all use of plastic bags by the end of 2018

The municipality of Jbeil will ban all use of plastic bags by the start of 2019, officials confirmed.

In a memo issued by the municipality, the local government has urged all supermarkets and retail outlets to replace plastic bags with eco-friendly alternatives by the start of next year.

The municipality is attempting to cut down some of its waste, and is urging other cities and municipalities to follow suit.

In the published memo, Jbeil Mayor Wissam Zaarour is asking the owners of establishments to replace plastic bags with eco-friendly ones (Facebook/Municipality of Jbail-Byblos)
In the published memo, Jbeil Mayor Wissam Zaarour is asking the owners of establishments to replace plastic bags with eco-friendly ones (Facebook/Municipality of Jbail-Byblos)

Many Lebanese environmental groups praised the decision, including Greenpeace Mediterranean global campaign.

“The Jbeil municipality got it right,” Julien Jreissati, a Greenpeace campaigner, told The Daily Star. “Our path out of this garbage crisis starts by reducing the amount of waste we produce.”

RELATED: Wind Power industry in Lebanon industry attracts bids from 40+ companies

The memo’s release comes just two days after Starbucks announced it will stop using disposable plastic straws by 2020 in a effort to eliminate some of the 335 million tons of plastic waste produced globally every year.

Lebanese-owned WHITE nightclub ranked in world’s top 20!

Lebanese-owned nightclub WHITE Dubai ranks as the twentieth best club in the world, according to an annual list released by DjMag.com.

WHITE Dubai was the only club in the Middle East to rank in the top 50.

Originally founded in Beirut in 2006, the nightclub expanded and opened a location in Dubai on the Meydan Racecourse Grandstand Rooftop in 2013.

WHITE Dubai was listed as among the top nightclubs in the world. (WHITE Dubai)
WHITE Dubai was listed as among the top nightclubs in the world. (WHITE Dubai)

Founded in 1991, DjMag is a British magazine for electronic dance music fans and DJs. The magazine releases a list of the most popular nightclubs in the world every year.

On Thursday’s, WHITE is home to the Bizaaar, which plays a mix of local genres. On Friday’s, the club plays music from international house and tech-house stars like Claptone and Dubfire.

RELATED: Study shows 40% of Beirut sleeps less than six hours

The club can fit 2,500 people and has been the venue of recent performances by Rick Ross, Sean Paul, Jason Derulo and Wiz Khalifa.

To view the current full list of the best clubs in the world, click here.

Four Seasons Hotel in Beirut wins award for ‘Best Luxury Hotel’ in 2018

The Four Seasons Hotel in Beirut has been named the ‘Best Luxury Hotel’ in 2018 by MEA Markets, a monthly investors publication based in England.

Four Seasons received GCC Enterprise Award, which honors the accomplishments of “innovative entities and individuals” across the Middle East region.

Four Seasons Beirut is just a one minute walk from Zaytounay Bay (Booking.com)
Four Seasons Beirut is just a one minute walk from Zaitunay Bay (Booking.com)

The luxury hotel has several nearby gourmet restaurants, a spa room and a rooftop pool with a 360-degree view of the Mediterranean sea, mountains and city.

Rami Sayess, the hotel’s general manager, said the hotel staff has worked hard to develop its luxurious brand in the region.

“I am delighted to receive this accolade on behalf of the team at Four Seasons Hotel Beirut,” Sayess said. “This recognition belongs to each and every one of them for all that they do to make the Four Seasons brand an iconic symbol of luxury.”

RELATED: This hotel suite in Broumana costs $80,000 per night!

The hotel is located about 20 minutes from the Beirut airport, near Zaitunay Bay along the Beirut Marina.

To find out more information about the hotel, click here.

British-Lebanese banker now executive vice-chairman of Swiss Bank UBS

British-Lebanese banker Paul Raphael is now an executive vice-chairman of the Swiss multinational investment bank UBS, a source told finews.asia.

According to the website, UBS said it was discussing options to terminate Raphael earlier in the year but he made a comeback. He will now be Head of Europe and Emerging Markets for the company.

The 56-year-old banker is fluent in Arabic, French, Portuguese, and Spanish and English. Raphael received a bachelors in Economics from the University of Maryland and a Master of Science in Management from the MIT Sloan School of Management.

Raphael is now the head of Head of Europe and Emerging Markets at UBS Wealth Management (finews.com)
The latest move marks a dramatic shift from news reported earlier this year (finews.com)

Paul Raphael previously served as a managing director for Credit Suisse and Merill Lynch. His experiences include Chairman of Central Europe, Middle East and Africa & Head of IBD for the Asia-Pacific Region.

A spokesman for UBS did not confirm or comment on the story.

Sleepless in Beirut: Study shows 40% of the city sleeps less than six hours

A sleep expert at the American University of Beirut Medical Center estimates that nearly 40 percent of the 2 million people living in Beirut sleep less than six hours every night.

While this is common in other Arab countries, associate professor Hassan Chami says this could be more common in Beirut than any other place in the region.

“I have good evidence based on my surveys that about 40 percent of Beirutis sleep less than six hours, which is a shocking number,” Chami said.

RELATED: Lebanon: ‘Best party place,’ says guy who visited every country

Chami believes these numbers are problematic and can lead to sleep deficiency. He believes the sleep deficiency among Beirut residents is approximately one third higher than the rate in the United States.

Lebanon has one of the most active nightlife activities in the region (POSH Club Beirut)
Lebanon has one of the most active nightlife activities in the region (POSH Club Beirut)

Sleep specialist and researcher Neil Stanley said the number of people who are short on sleep is high, and it’s a problem.

“In the past, people would have taken a siesta (Nap) in the Gulf, which allowed them to stay up at night,” Stanley said. “But that doesn’t happen anymore… People are still living like that but are missing out on the afternoon nap.”

Soccer star Mohamed Salah vacations in Beirut as World Cup continues

Egyptian soccer player Mohamed Salah and his family arrived in Beirut late Friday for a vacation, reports said.

According to the daily newspaper Al Liwaa, Salah, his wife Maggie and their daughter Makkah will be in Lebanon for three days. They will also meet with Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri during their trip.

Salah is staying at a hotel in downtown Beirut, but the exact location is not being released for security purposes, the newspaper added.

Salah was recently dumped out of the World Cup tournament in the group stages after his team lost all three of their matches and failed to receive any points to advance to the round of 16.

Mohamed Salah plays for the Egyptian National team (Express and star)
Mohamed Salah plays for the Egyptian National team. (File photo)

However, Salah led the national team to their first World Cup since 1990 and managed to score two goals himself during the tournament.

RELATED: Man stabbed to death during World Cup argument

Salah is expected to be at Liverpool FC training camp in three weeks.

The team will be at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Michigan on July 28 for their showdown with rival Manchester United.

Two Lebanese women among Forbes top 10 entrepreneurs in Middle East

Forbes Middle East recently released a list of the top 10 women entrepreneurs in the Middle East that “have championed the most innovative ideas and received the most external funding” in 2017.

Two women from Lebanon made the list at numbers 6 and 9!

The list included women of Arab origin based in the Middle East who were “making waves” in their respective industries.

Nadia Moussouni, named number 6, is the co-founder of her startup Energy 24 that raised $3 million.

Founded in 2011, Moussoun’s Beirut-based startup seeks to create alternative energy storage and generators and currently consists of two technicians, plus four technicians on contract basis.

Nadia and co-founder Antoine Saab (Executive Magazine)
Nadia and co-founder Antoine Saab (Executive Magazine)

RELATED: Carla Haddad: From 14-year-old model to ‘Dancing with the Stars’ celebrity

At number 9, Loulou Khazen Baz raised $1.8 million for her startup Nabbesh.

Founded in 2012, Baz’s startup is the Middle East’s first online freelance work marketplace.

Loulou previously won the TV show “The Entrepreneur” in 2012 for the Nabbesh idea and oversaw the planning of new startups in the healthcare, education and technology sectors.

You can check out the full list, by clicking here.

JOBS: Emirates now hiring crew members in Lebanon

A major global airline is looking to add more Lebanese talent to its crew. The Emirates airline will be holding a career fair in Lebanon for two days in an effort to fulfill demand in the region.

The Dubai-based airline is looking for “open-minded, helpful, friendly and service-oriented” candidates to spend the day speaking to recruiters on July 3 and July 6.

  • July 3: Burj on Bay Hotel in Kfar Yassine, Lebanon starting at 8 a.m.
  • July 6: Mövenpick Hotel in Beirut starting at 8 a.m.

For both dates candidates are expected to bring their most recent resume (CV) and a photograph.

RELATED: Lebanese man wins $1 million jackpot at Dubai Duty Free for the second time

Two more open recruiting days in Beirut and Jouneh are scheduled for August. The specifics have not been announced.

This is the airline’s latest push to capture the market of Lebanese expats that travel to Lebanon every year.

On March 29, the airline’s flagship double-decker plane made its first appearance of an eventual service route to Beirut’s Rafic Hariri airport.

Emirates A380 made its first landing in Beirut this year (Emirates Media centre)
Emirates A380 made its first landing in Beirut this year (Emirates Media centre)

For more information about requirements and the selection process, visit their website here.

Samir Geagea’s Instagram account hacked, ransom asked for its return

Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea’s Instagram account was hacked Monday, according to a statement released by the party’s office.

According to An-Nahar, the unidentified hackers “asked for a ransom in exchange for the return of the account.”

The former militia leader’s Instagram account’s bio read, “This account has been hacked.” There was also a post of an unknown male with text that read, “Black hat: hacking in the real world.”

Courtesy of An-Nahar
Screenshot posted by An-Nahar.

This comes nearly a month after the Lebanese Forces were able to win 15 parliamentary seats, almost doubling the amount of their party members in parliament.

Samir Geagea most recently lashed out at President Aoun’s decree granting Lebanese citizenship to over 400 foreigners, most of whom are wealthy Syrians.

RELATED: Lebanese Forces, Kataeb and PSP call on Aoun to nullify citizenship decree

The Lebanese Forces said it reached out to Instagram and it appears the account has now been restored and the hackers post was removed.

Geagea’s Instagram account can be found at this link.

One of Natalie Portman’s favorite restaurants in NYC is Lebanese

One of Natalie Portman’s favorite vegan restaurants in New York City is a Lebanese restaurant called ilili.

In an interview with Timeout.com, Portman was promoting her upcoming documentary “Eating Animals” when asked about her favorite vegan eateries in New York.

Portman, who holds dual Israeli and American citizenship, said “Ilili is a great Lebanese restaurant that I love.”

Ilili, which means “tell me” in Arabic, is located in New York’s Flatiron district and serves “creative Lebanese sharing plates, entrees & cocktails served up in a trendy, modern space.”

Ilili is located on 5th Avenue in New York City. (Facebook/ilili Restaurant)
Ilili is located on 5th Avenue in New York City. (Facebook/ilili Restaurant)

Some iconic Lebanese vegan dishes that are featured in the restaurant include variations of falafel, mujadara, foul and hummus.

RELATED: 5 Lebanese vegan recipes perfect for Veganuary!

In addition to a dine in experience, ilili also offers catering and delivery options through Uber Eats, Grub Hub and Postmates.

The interior of Lebanese restaurant Ilili in New York City. (Facebook/ilili Restaurant)
The interior of Lebanese restaurant ilili in New York City. (Facebook/ilili Restaurant)

To check out their menu on their website, click here. Ilili is located at 236 5th Avenue in New York City.

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