Hidden between walled gardens in El Mina, Tripoli, lies a guesthouse of historic proportions. What was once the private home of a beloved physician is now an unlikely sanctuary.
Beit El Nessim is the pet project of yoga guru Nabil Najjar. Inspired by the design and location of a landmark home in the pedestrian area of the city, he decided to transform the space into an urban retreat.
The house itself, known locally as Beit El Hakim, belonged to two generations of doctors known for their empathy when it came to treating patients. Dr. Yacoub Al Labban was so highly regarded in the community that when he died, a statue was erected in the town square in his honor.
The doctor’s karma is a lingering presence in Beit El Nessim and one of the main reasons why Najjar chose that particular location.
The narrow walkway leading up to the entrance, lush greenery and minimal congestion, are reminiscent of a country estate with features such as a charming rooftop terrace and an interior courtyard. Visitors will notice a conscious effort to preserve the unique style and architectural details of the building while integrating modern amenities with style, elegance and integrity to the original design.
The interior is an eclectic mix of local antiques, Egyptian textiles and furniture from India. “The feel of the place is very important,” says Hajjar.
When you see the light bouncing off the polished marble of the main salon, you get a sense of serenity and happiness.
Hajjar designed the interior himself using a lot of recycled materials like old wood, doors and headboards from antique shops in Tripoli, with touches of eastern flare. Beit El Nessim’s six rooms, which have been given loving names such as Samsarra, Bindu and Shanti, are warm and inviting.
Yoga enthusiasts can also look forward to special events and weekend retreats that take place in the main hall.
“Our goal is to make you feel at home in a peaceful oasis away from everyday life, where harmony is brought to both heart and mind,” Najjar says.
Labban Street, El Mina, Tripoli