Riviera is one of Beirut’s oldest landmarks that has endured the war and is still proudly standing and functioning till today in one of Lebanon’s most beautiful streets, Corniche el Manara.
Just being there engulfs you with an aura of magic from the days when Beirut was known as the “Paris of the Middle East”. I have always had a sentiment for the Riviera Hotel, imagining my grandparents and parents sipping some wine there by the sea; there’s just something so wonderful about going to a place where your grandparents used to go to.
Capturing the Phoenician spirit, the hotel’s Au Bar is a very quiet, cozy, and charming place that seats 25 people and is ideal for a quick lunch break or for a nice intimate dinner where you can indulge in its tasty international cuisine. Since its kitchen is open 24/7, you can always enjoy a very early breakfast there after a long night of clubbing. You can also pass by after work for some happy hour drinks from 5 to 8 pm. You do not have to be a guest at the hotel; Riviera’s venues welcome everyone with its staff’s authentic Lebanese hospitality.
For all you food lovers out there, I suggest you start by trying Au Bar’s Caesar Salad; it is fresh, crunchy, and the dressing is deliciously light in taste and texture. If you’re in the mood for a sandwich, I suggest you order the Cheese Burger – it reminded me of the burgers I used to have during my family’s outdoor barbeques when I was a teenager; it tasted homemade with that delicious open grill barbeque flavor. It’s not a heavy burger but still tastes so good! If you prefer ordering a platter, go for a medium-rare Grilled Beef Tenderloin. The meat itself is very tasty and nicely grilled, the vegetables are unique and delectable, the fries are nice and crunchy, and the mushroom sauce is so yummy that you can eat it alone! After you’re done, you simply must try the refreshingly mouthwatering sorbet – the strawberry and mango flavors are definitely the best! It is light, fresh, and revitalizing. In case you’re in the mood for something a bit heavier, try the Mouhallabiah – it is one of the best I’ve had so far; excellent!
The staff is very well trained and exceptionally friendly – your waiter will make you feel as though you’re in your own home, so don’t worry about this being a hotel venue. It is not stuffy or overpriced and you’ll notice that from the moment you are seated.
Dress comfortably and keep your company from 2 to 4 people because the charm of the setting is its homey and intimate ambiance. There is no right time to go; so whenever you’re in the Beirut area, take a drive along the lovely Mediterranean coast and make a stop at the Riviera Hotel.
Price per person is approximately 30 USD.
For reservation: +961 1 373 210
If you have been to Au Bar, please leave a comment on the page, letting us know how your experience was and how you think the venue can improve.