Beit Kanz, a Lebanese cultural hub featuring a Lebanese terroir shop, an artisanal boutique and a café-restaurant, has opened its doors on Sursock Street, Beirut, Lebanon.
The heritage building dates back more than a century and offers a visual feast of architectural styles: Lebanese, Ottoman and Art Deco, with exquisite woodwork and a splendid array of patterns and colors.
The building is a testament to the spirit of Kanz: mindful of the past while resolutely focused on the future.
In a statement, Maya Ibrahimchah, Beit el Baraka’s founder, said: “Beit Kanz is a hub that allows us to honor our heritage, celebrate our culinary traditions, and share our collective knowledge. It is a place of dialogue, food, craftsmanship, history, music and art. With all proceeds going to support Beit el Baraka’s 226,000 vulnerable families of retirees and children, Kanz aims at achieving scalable and lasting change in Lebanon’s rural areas by providing sustainable solutions that tap into Lebanon’s boundless opportunities and transmit the skills needed for Beit el Baraka’s beneficiaries to become self-sufficient producers. This venture was made possible by wonderful philanthropists who believe in the importance of preserving our cultural heritage, and who believe in empowering women producers and perpetrating artisanal craftsmanship. All proceeds made by Kanz are fully donated to Beit el Baraka.”
The gourmet shop features a complete range of Kanz ethical products handcrafted by more than 1,000 Lebanese women in 53 villages. The recipes combine ancestral skills with the creativity of renowned chefs who use seasonal and natural homegrown ingredients.
The boutique is a platform that showcases the elegant talent of local artisans, from physically challenged potters in the Shouf to visually impaired wicker weavers in Beirut, embroiderers and couturiers in Baalbek, coppersmiths in Tripoli, fine glass blowers in Tyre, soap makers in Saida and carpenters in Hadath. Lebanese craftsmanship is promoted by encouraging more craftspeople to create Lebanese handicrafts using their heritage techniques and combining them with a modern artistic direction (in collaboration with Beirut Bloomers).
The café is a journey in time and a culinary adventure that celebrates Lebanon’s most precious treasure: land. Beit Kanz’s menu celebrates Lebanese ancestral culinary heritage by depicting the historical background of every seasonal dish on its menu (developed with Heritage and Roots’ historian Charles al-Hayek).