Le Grand Serail
Le Grand Serail
4
About
The Grand Serail is the headquarters of government in Lebanon, i.e. the Prime Minister's Palace. For this reason, it is actually illegal to photograph the structure. Suprisingly, the concept of the Serail has come down from the Ottomans, rather than the French, as a saray is a palace. The structure was built up over the years, having been used as barracks by the Egyptians in the 1830s, then as a Garrison and, later, as a hospital by the Ottomans. The building was abandoned as a hospital and became a type of art gallery, before being used as the Governor's House by the French when they took control of Lebanon in 1918. After independence, the Serail was the Presidential Palace from 1943 to 1952 (currently the Presidential Palace is Qantari Palace), and it was finally converted into the Prime Minister's Residence in 1952 by Riad As-Solh.
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.

4.0
43 reviews
Excellent
16
Very good
15
Average
8
Poor
2
Terrible
2

dmittleman
Palm Beach Gardens, FL1,443 contributions
Heavily protected, you can't really see much of Le Grand Serail. You are also not supposed to take pictures of it. Be careful when visiting here as the military presence is strong and you don't want to make any mis-steps.
Written January 5, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Ramzi Traboulsi
Beirut, Lebanon459 contributions
Family
the Grand Serail is simply gorgeous , must pass next to it and check it out , too bad you can't visit it though
Written November 10, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Manoul
Beirut, Lebanon717 contributions
Business
I was lucky to visit this saray.. It is situated atop a hill in downtown Beirut a few blocks away from the Lebanese Parliament. The Grand Serail is a historic building, the most important of three Ottoman monuments on the Serail hill. at the center of the entrance a limestone and Carrera marble fountain welcome you... Both the exterior and interior facades are covered by arches and arcades..
Written January 14, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Marialena D
Nicosia, Cyprus161 contributions
Friends
You're not allowed to enter, so I would say to check it out while walking the Roman ruins and the rest of that area. From outside it is a nice building, especially because it's standing on the hill. Wasn't impressed.
Written March 22, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

RaniGhosson
Tripoli, Lebanon43 contributions
Solo
Entrance is not allowed for any one. The whole area is surrounded by military and police everywhere, with many roads access not allowed for even pedestrians!
From outside, the building looks very elegant, amazing, big, and beautiful.
In front of it is the Rafik el Harriri Statue (one of the 2 statues), with a nice fountain.
Written September 7, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Joey T
Raleigh, NC35 contributions
Very beautiful from outside, but you can't go anywhere near the building really, you can just see it form some nearby streets. Maybe if you're in the area drive by and see it, but don't go just for that. Less than a minute walk away in incredible downtown beirut with countless sights, I would recommend going there instead
Written August 12, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Anthony Kobbaz Jr.
Pindamonhangaba, SP15 contributions
Family
A beautiful building of historical importance on the top of a hill and the size of a block, it played a crucial role in the history of Lebanon, serving the Ottomans as well as the French mandate. During these periods, and especially after World War I, all the thousands and thousands of Lebanese who emigrated to the Americas or any other area of ​​the globe had to enter this building in order to obtain their exit permit and from there to Beirut Harbor to win the world. After the civil war that destroyed it the Grand Serail has been completely rebuilt and is today an important part of the downtown landscape.
Written July 28, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

ssk43211
25 contributions
Friends
Well the building was ok, obviously we couldn’t go again as it is a government building. Plus if you take pictures you will get undercover military cops coming up to you, asking where you are from and why are you taking pictures.
Written June 19, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

gons16
12 contributions
Couples
The builiding is not accessible to public. It isn't beautiful. Well protected. A quick view at the outside and that's it.
Written April 6, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Katou A
Dubai, United Arab Emirates516 contributions
Couples
Unique building beautiful architecture it's simply amazing! I wish we could enter there to discover the history of the building.
Written August 5, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Le Grand Serail, Beirut

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