Beirut: B-018 Nightclub (Lebanon)

B-018 Nightclub

Cnr Charles Helou and Al Khodor, Beirut, Lebanon

Bernard Khoury (1998)

B-018 by Bernard Khoury 09

B-018 nightclub is a political statement in a city with a difficult recent history. A place for entertainment and pleasure in an area greatly affected by war and social unrest. An incredibly powerful design evoking military imagery, yet also totally engaging and sensory with opening roof panels bringing the entire facility to life after the sun goes down.

‘The B018 project is, first of all, a reaction to difficult and explosive conditions that are inherent to the history of its location and the contradictions that are implied by the implementation of an entertainment program on such a site.  
B018 refuses to participate in the naïve amnesia that governs the post-war reconstruction efforts.  

The project is built below ground. Its façade is pressed into the ground to avoid the over exposure of a mass that could act as a rhetorical monument. The building is embedded in a circular concrete disc slightly above tarmac level. At rest, it is almost invisible. It comes to life in the late hours of the night when its articulated heavy metal roof structure retracts hydraulically. The opening of the roof exposes the club to the world above and reveals the cityscape as an urban backdrop to the patrons below. Its closing translates a voluntary disappearance, a gesture of recess. The building is encircled by concrete and tarmac rings.  The automobiles’ circular travel around the club and the concentric parking spots frame the building in a carousel formation. At night, the continuous motion of the visitors’ cars animates the parking and becomes an integral element of the club’s scenario. The entrance is located at the south end of the low-lying metal construction where a staircase leads to two concessive “airlock” spaces manned by scowling bouncers. Strewn across the concrete pavement floor of the underground hall, the sofas with collapsible backs serve as elevated dancing surfaces that stage the performers.’ – Bernard Khoury

 

Further Information:

Place: B-018 Nightclub

Designer: Bernard Khoury

Photographer: Bernard Khoury website

Review: Area (1999), Wallpaper (April 1999) and a+t (1999)

Map: B-018 Nightclub Map

 

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ALSO HAVE A LOOK AT STEPHENVARADY_ARCHITRAVELLER

 

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