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Full nameBeirut
Official nameBeirut
Native nameبيروت Bayrūt
Other nameBeyrut(Turkish)
GovernorateBeirut, Capital City
MayorBilal Hamad
Total Area7.7 sq mi (20 km2)
Urban Area38.6 sq mi (100 km2)
Metro Area77.2 sq mi (200 km2)
Total Population750000
Urban (pop.)1900000
Metro (pop.)2250000 ~ 3000000
Other information
Time zone+2 (UTC)
- Summer (DST)+3 (UTC)

     Home | City | Beirut

Beirut ( , ) is the capital and largest city of Lebanon with a population ranging from some 1 million to more than 2 million as of 2007. Located on a peninsula at the midpoint of Lebanon's coastline with the Mediterranean, it serves as the country's largest and main seaport, and also forms the Beirut Metropolitan Area, which consists of the city and its suburbs. The first mention of this metropolis is found in the ancient Egyptian Tell el Amarna letters, dating to the 15th century BC, and the city has been continuously inhabited since.

Beirut holds Lebanon's seat of government, and plays a central role in the Lebanese economy with its city centre, Hamra, Verdun, and Ashrafieh-based corporate firms and banks. The city is the focal point of the region's cultural life, renowned for its press, theatres, cultural activities, and nightlife. After the destructive Lebanese civil war, Beirut underwent major reconstruction, and the redesigned historic city centre, marina, pubs and nightlife districts have once again rendered it a tourist attraction.

Beirut was named the top place to visit in 2009 by The New York Times. It was also listed as one of the ten liveliest cities in the world by Lonely Planet in 2009.

In 2011, MasterCard Index revealed that Beirut has the second highest visiting spending levels in the Middle East and Africa. Dubai came in first with $7.8 billion, followed by Beirut with $6.5 billion, Tel Aviv with $3.8 billion, Cairo at $3.7 billion and Johannesburg with $3.3 billion. At the same time it was listed as the ninth most visited and as such it's still considered a "high-end" destination.

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