Beach season is back ! Though some enjoy sitting at the pool with margaritas commenting on each other’s summer bodies, this moment of the year rather means for you eventually finding some time to dive into a good book. 

That is, when you’re able to find one. Here is a list of 8 resourceful bookstores in Beirut that might help you in your quest.

The Little Bookshop

This independent bookshop which opened in 2014 offers a wide selection of books in English, all handpicked by the owner Adib Rahhal.

Location: Makdesi Building, off Jeanne d’Arc Street, Hamra, Beirut

Phone : +961 740 270

Opening hours: from Monday to Friday, 4pm-11pm, and Saturday, 11am-3pm, 6pm-22pm

Uncle Joe

Opened in 2019, this tiny independent bookstore at the beginning of Hamra street offers a great diversity of second-hand books in Arabic, English and French.

Location: Hamra Street, facing Fransabank, Beirut

Phone: +961 71 392 597

Opening hours: from Monday to Sunday, 4pm-12pm

Halabi Bookshop

This small family-operated bookshop sells a large collection of Arabic, English and French books on various topics. The place was launched as a grocery store in 1958 and gradually transformed into a bookstore after the Lebanese Civil War.

Location: Nahass Building, Jalloul Street 77, El-Horge 57, Kaskas, Beirut

Phone: +961 71 501 093

Opening hours: from Monday to Friday, 9am-7.30pm

Bissan

The bookstore was opened in 1985 by its owner Isa Ahwash. It offers a vast selection of books in Arabic.

Location: Gandhi street, Hamra, Beirut

Phone: +961 3 653 073

Opening hours: from Monday to Saturday, 9am-8pm, and Sunday, 9am-6pm

Librairie Internationale

Founded by Antranik Helvadian in 1960, Libraire Internationale displays many volumes in Arabic, English and French. It specializes in politics, decoration, art, fiction, graphic design, Islamic art and history and bestseller novels.

Location: Clemenceau street, Gefinor center, block D

Phone: +961 1 743 285

Opening hours: from Monday to Saturday, 9.20am-2.30pm, Sunday, 11am-2.30pm

Librairie orientale

This tri-lingual bookstore offers a wide variety of non-fiction books dictionaries, research books, history and archaeology books and university textbooks. Created in 1946, the chain currently has three locations in Beirut.

Locations: Sin el-Fil, Jisr al Wati / Ashrafieh, facing ABC Mall, Park building/Hamra street, street, Mroueh building , Beirut

Phone: +961 1 485 793

Opening hours: from Monday to Saturday, 9am-6pm

Librairie Stephan

Created in 1956, Librairie Stephan sells books in Arabic, English and French. It has two points of sale in Furn el Chebbak and Achrafieh. In the second, you can enjoy an entire floor full of comics and mangas.

Locations: Damascus street, Furn el Chebbak (Phone +961 1 283 333) and Achrafieh street, Achrafieh (Phone: +961 1 331 020)

Opening hours: from Monday to Saturday, 8am-8pm

Librairie Antoine

Born in 1933, the bookstores chain mainly offers volume in French, as well as a smaller selection of books in English and Arabic and a few Spanish, Italian and German books.

Achrafieh – ABC Mall / Phone: +961 218 175 / Opening hours: from Monday to Sunday, 10am-10pm

Achrafieh – Sassine / Phone : +961 1 331 811 / Opening hours : from Monday to Friday, 8.30am-7pm, Saturday, 8.30am-6pm

Hamra – Rue Hamra / Phone : +961 1 341 470 / Opening hours: from Monday to Sunday, 8.30am-8pm, Sunday, 3pm-8pm

Sin el Fil / Phone : +961 1 481 072 / Opening hours: from Monday to Friday, 8am-6.30pm, Saturday, 8am-5pm

ABC Verdun – Level 2 / Phone : 961 1 794 950 / Opening hours: from Monday to Sunday, 10am-22pm  

AUB Bookstore – Campus AUB / Phone : +961 1 744 808 / Opening hours: from Monday to Friday, 7.30am-6pm, Saturday, 8am-1pm

Beirut – Beirut Souks / Phone : +961 1 999 650 / Opening hours: from Monday to Sunday, 10am-10pm