Legend has it that the tears of the Greek God Dionysus, the god of drunkenness, stained the white quartz statue of a beautiful girl purple creating the amethyste stone. The décor of the stunning Amethyste lounge and restaurant is not too far removed from the Greek gods and goddesses. The restaurant has majestic fountains and huge pillars surrounding the Phoenicia’s outdoor swimming pool, where swinging beds are draped in majestic purple throws. The setting of the restaurant is serene and overlooks the sea so it is the perfect setting for a midday retreat from the sun or a drink in the evening where you can take in the city of Beirut.
The menu at amethyst caters for all palates but the speciality has to be the mixed grill which we had to share. The meat arrived sizzling on a mini barbeque of hot coals. The lamb kafteh and lightly grilled chicken were cooked to perfection. A speciality in Lebanon is the mixed grill which is traditionally shared between two or more people.
It is the sharing of food that provides a unique dining experience in Beirut. We had a selection of side dishes including the humus (a staple of almost every meal) which was smooth and tangy blended to perfection with a drizzle of olive oil. The tabouleh was very fresh and complemented the grill perfectly. I liked the originality of the menu and the fries scattered with chilli flakes provided the perfect amount of heat to keep you wanting more.
After the nightlife in Beirut had taken a toll on us, the virgin cocktails were a welcome refresher. The original flavour of the lemon and ginger mixed with honey were reminiscent of the geek theme of the lounge.The decadence of the bar and pool area is not overwhelming and is the ideal place for a few cocktails before hitting Beirut’s intoxicating nightlife. The outdoor pool area plays black and white films in the evenings, a touch that only added to the laid back glamour of the lounge. Amethyste has breathtaking views of the nearby marina which are only amplified at night – with a cocktail it has to be the only place to spend a fabulous summer evening in Beirut.
Visit the Phoenicia website here for more information.
Written by a Thoroughly Modern Miss, Alya Randell-Khan.