KFAR DEBIAN, Lebanon: You don’t have to travel hundreds of miles for skiing and snowboarding this winter. Just an hour away from the capital, you’ll find some of the best cold-weather sports, indulgent spa retreats and winter festivals. Still looking for a place to stay? Consult our guide to winter holiday getaways in Lebanon. InterContinental
and Spa If you’re planning to hit the slopes in style this winter, the InterContinental Mzaar Hotel and Spa is the place you’ll want to stay in. This 5-star hotel offers easy access to the Mzaar Kfar Debian ski resort, which has the largest number of slopes in the country and offers everything from gentle, beginner-friendly slopes to expert off-piste adrenaline-inducing terrain.
Other leisure facilities in the hotel include an indoor heated swimming pool, Jacuzzi, sauna, kids’ center, cinema and a small shopping arcade.
The InterCon is also home to Les Thermes du Mzaar, a 1,200-square meter spa offering balneotherapy, aromatheraphy, pressotherapy and much more.
Prices start at $200/night for a single room on weekdays and $270/night on weekends.
For reservations call 09-340-100. Hotel Eleven Located in the center of the action, this exclusive concept boutique hotel is at walking distance from the Mzaar ski slopes. No one room at Eleven is the same, and the hotel boasts a unique cheese cellar with more than 50 varieties. Space is limited so make sure to book ahead of time. Prices start at $200/night.
For more information call 09-341-741. L’Etoile du Mzaar ChaletsIf you’re looking for the luxury of your own apartment, Etoile du Mzaar Chalets are known to rent some of the most luxurious chalet within the Mzaar resort. Guests are at walking distance away from the resort’s shops, restaurants and bars as well as in close proximity to rental points, ski lesson meeting spots and the ski lifts themselves. The Jonction slope is the nearest to the chalets. Prices start at $545 for a two-bedroom chalet.
Terre BruneA five-minute drive from the slopes, what makes Terre Brune so special is its faintly remote location where guests can revel in nature’s beauty without being too far away from the ski center’s hustle and bustle. The hotel offers free shuttle buses to the slopes and also boasts a spa retreat, The Cloud, and a fitness area. Prices start at $290 per night for a double room.
For more information visit their website at terrebrunehotel.com.Merab HotelMerab Hotel is known for its cozy rooms perfect for families and couples on a budget. The hotel is also pristinely located next to the Merab slopes. Prices start at $114 per night.
For more information visit merabhotel.com
Faqra Hotel Looking for a weekend getaway in the mountains but tired of the Faraya crowd? L’Auberge de Faqra Hotel is a chic hotel with a unique, modern architecture. Located in the heart of Faqra, this hotel is only a few minutes away from the ski slopes and lifts.
Prices for a single room start at $173/night on weekdays and $186 on weekends.
For more information call 09-300-600.
As for the best food and drink in Faraya, all of Beirut’s popular restaurant chains have made their way up the mountain and neatly nestled themselves in. Some of our favorites include Classic Burger Joint, Tomatomatik, Olio at The Igloo for excellent Italian cuisine, and Lina’s Café.
For Lebanese mezze, Rikky’z is not to miss, however, if you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, El Mexicano is the restaurant everyone’s talking about for authentic Mexican cuisine.
However, if you’re craving something more on the go, there are plenty of manouche stands at the roundabout on the way to Kfar Debian. Our go-to morning manouche fix is Saj Mema and even though it’s always packed, their cheese manouche is definitely worth the wait. Right next to Saj Mema is Abou Artine, who makes great saj with homemade sojok. Alternatively, you can stop by Emm Bachir if you like your manouche paper-thin and crunchy.