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Photographer's Note

This was taken from a hot air balloon at 150 meter near the Beirut Marina looking to the south.

Beirut
Beirut is the capitol of Lebanon and has a population of 2 million, this is half of the total population of Lebanon. The city is getting back on it's feet after the civil war ('75-'90). They are building big hotels and huge tower appartments near the coast to attract tourists and rich people from the Middle East to spend money. They are also rebuilding the entire downtown area and transforming it into a a big shopping district.

Balloon
The balloon can be found next to the famous Phoenicia Hotel, near the Marina. The ride is about US$ 10 and will take you to 150m and back in 15min. The operator told me that it could go to 300m but the weather conditions must be right and he has to have permission from ATC.

Holiday Inn hotel
On the right bottom of the frame you see the Holiday Inn building that was build between '70-'75, just before the war started. It is made earthquake proof because Beirut is on the Arabian tectonic plate. The last big earthquake was in 551 AD. During the war the building was used by snipers and now by homeless people.

West Beyrouth
A good movie about the beginning of the war thru the eyes of a few teenages is West Beyrouth ('98).

This city is fantastic! If you have the opportunity, please go there and spend your money and help the country back on it's feet.

yoshie, orme, euryan, jujudum, akhater, saamb, gsimon, fserajian, thor68, banyanman, trips, amino has marked this note useful

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Additional Photos by Gilbert Sopakuwa (startacked) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 422 W: 146 N: 344] (1331)
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