After two great experiences with Kempinski earlier in 2017, I was looking forward to staying at Kempinski Summerland Hotel & Resort Beirut which inherited the iconic Summerland property and opened its doors a few months ago. Being a black member of DISCOVERY Loyalty, the loyalty programme of the Kempinski hotels and others, I was entitled to not only an early check-in, which tops my priorities after flying regardless of how short the flight is, but also to a complimentary upgrade to the next higher room type — a sea view room in this case.
After staying at several 5-star hotels in Beirut, I can safely say that this is the warmest welcome I had in the city. Check-in was quick and effortless after which I was escorted to my spacious sea-view room.
Kempinski Summerland Hotel & Resort Beirut is a member of the DISCOVERY Loyalty programme, which I highly recommend joining for free as it offers you discounts and other perks at 35 independent luxury hotel brands, including Kempinski in 76 countries.
Many facilities and amenities set Kempinski Summerland Hotel & Resort Beirut from most other hotels in the capital Beirut, such as being the only 5-star luxury beach resort in Lebanon with its own private beach. The 153-room hotel is also the only one in Beirut with day use beach bungalows with Jacuzzi and direct pool access and a personal butler service.
As I mentioned above, the check-in was warm and this applied to the staff’s friendliness and helpfulness throughout the stay. Nothing was too difficult to arrange or too much to ask, which I imagine foreign tourists would appreciate even more than us Lebanese in a country like Lebanon and a hectic city like Beirut.
My room was spacious, elegantly decorated, and had a big balcony which I am eager to return to when the weather warms up a bit as it overlooks both the sea and the swimming pool. Breakfast was also excellent and had many options, including eggs/omelettes cooked to order; however, as a sweet tooth, I would have appreciated more options for dessert. There is also a fresh juice stand, which was good, but could also use some variety.
As a member of DISCOVERY Loyalty, I had a Local Experience to redeem, and I chose the “Lebanon in a Glass of Wine” experience which is basically a private wine and cheese setting, which was great but I was hoping there would be more information on the wines on offer (around 5-6 in total). The other Local Experiences at Kempinski Summerland include a spa treatment, high tea hour (which includes a tour of the hotel’s own herbs garden), and an authentic Lebanese lunch/dinner served in room. Click here to join DISCOVERY Loyalty for free and redeem any of these experiences.
Speaking of spas, the Kempinski Summerland has one of the largest hotel spas in the Lebanese capital with over 2 floors of 1,044 sqm in total area. I didn’t try any of the treatments but the setting looked very tempting.
Final verdict: All in all, I really enjoyed my stay at Kempinski Summerland Hotel & Resort Beirut despite visiting in the winter and not being able to use the swimming pool/beach. The service is warm, the food is good, and the location was great for my purposes. That said, the location itself might be off-putting to first time visitors to Beirut who might want something closer to the action, although all major touristy places are still within short driving distance.