Sunday, 11 September 2011

The Restaurant Renaissance

The river-side restaurant at the newly opened Lebanese Family Club
For decades, the favourite past-time for Baghdadis has been to dine out, whether be it on the Tigris for 'masgouf' or at a cafe in down-town Baghdad. Recent years have seen a resurgence in new quality restaurants in a city where choices were limited during the sanction years. Today, Baghdad offers some of the finest cuisines available ranging from Chinese to traditional Iraqi. Depending on your taste and budget, these restaurants are sure to tempt your taste-buds.

Mazaya, a sophisticated modern restaurant in the Karrada district.
The dramatically themed black and white Lebanese restaurant at the newly opened Lebanese Family Club in Karrada. 

If you're naturally indecisive, Stella 62 is the place for you. Offering 4 levels of cafes and restaurants, this newly opened establishment caters to all. 

An old favourite, the Al-Reef Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria is a little piece of Rome in the heart of Baghdad. 

Al-Faqma is an institution on its own serving ice-creams and desserts that will surely satisfy.

The Chinese Restaurant offers something different for locals seeking to diversify their tastes

This turkish chain 'Pizza Pizza' offers pizzas amongst other things. It offers a relaxed and contemporary atmosphere.
Ice Pack Ice-creams and cafe in Karrada
Al Ameerat Restaurant inside the Iraqi Hunting Club

Saturday, 20 August 2011

VIPs get special treatment at Baghdad International...

Business executives, government officials, CEOs and VIPs now have the option of leaving Baghdad's traffic jams and searches behind by checking into the brand new VIP Baghdad International Airport Terminal featuring a luxurious hotel, meeting rooms and chic lounge areas.

Zawraa comes back to life

Friday, 12 August 2011

Luxury returns to Baghdad

Baghdad's newest destination, the $23 million Lebanese Family Club

Saturday, 23 July 2011

The changing face of Baghdad

What a difference 8 years makes! Baghdad, a city of culture and history has gone through many ups and downs especially after 2003 when the old regime was much has changed since then. Of course not all the scars of war have been erased, they stand as a reminder of the battles Baghdad and Iraq have been through to gain freedom. Baghdad today is a bustling city filled with colour and rebirth.

Small examples of the return to normalcy include the re-opening of multiple "Baghdady" institutions including the renowned 5-star Al-Rasheed Hotel, an establishment which was badly damaged during the war. The Swiss-based Kempinski have renovated the entire hotel at a cost of $65 million dollars making it once again a world-class establishment.
The infamous Al-Rasheed Hotel has been revamped, becoming Baghdad's most luxurious establishment
Other hotels which have received full-blown renovations include the Ishtar Hotel, Al-Mansour, Babylon Hotel and Palestine Hotel, a sign that Baghdad and its people are ready to let go of the past and move into a new era.
Many buildings which were battered over the years have also been beautified to reflect Baghdad's new state of mind. One of these buildings is the Baghdad Tower, formerly the Saddam Tower and communication centre. Gleaming glass and steel facades shimmer in the harsh sun as a testament to what the city will become.

The newly renovated Baghdad Tower and Communication Centrestandsas a testament of what can be achieved

Empty streets have now sprung back to life boasting new 5-star restaurants, cafes and vibrant shops offering everything from electronics to designer clothing. Fun is literally returning to the Iraqi people who have suffered so much during the wars and sanctions over the past 30 years. The Al-Zawra Theme Park's newest edition is a giant Ferris Wheel which is also a symbol of what can be done in this great capital. The breathtaking view from the top is well worth the long lines to board the newest amusement ride in this entertainment starved city.

If a ferris wheel ride isn't what you fancy, what about a screening at the only 4D in Baghdad? Small cinemas are also beginning to open after a sharp decline. The first cinema in the post-Saddam era was inaugurated recently highlighting Baghdad's desire to return to normalcy and bring back the fun to Iraqi families. The boutique cinema located in the lavish Iraqi Hunting Club screens new movies in a city where censorship dominated the screens.