This Underground War Bunker is one of the best Nightclubs in the world

Photo: Courtesy of Bernard Khoury

B018 is currently a nightclub posing as a bomb shelter stationed in the center of a round parking lot in Lebanon and is considered to be one of the best techno clubs in the world.

The backstory behind its rise consists of the makings of a Hollywood Movie, only it is a story that happened in real life. The authenticity of the situation could never be imagined by anybody that did not live it, so a movie version of it would not do it justice.

The harsh truth behind what happened during the rise of B018 is unfathomable. In the mid-1980s, Beirut was a complete warzone. The people that lived there could not feel safe due to the constant artillery barrages from various forces. Missiles and rockets dominated the area, and it was a time of great suffering and loss for the citizens.

Photo: Courtesy of B018

While war raged on in the background, music enthusiast Naji Gebran spent his time creating and producing music in a small chalet with the combination B018 listed on the front door. It started as his own music space and turned into a place of hope. Music lovers living life on a live battlefield would add some magic to B018, and would make a music refuge out of the small chalet.

The popularity skyrocketed, and the group would move beyond the initial starting place and take steps to grow. They outgrew several different locations until 1998 when they moved into the subterranean bomb shelter that is the current legendary location.

The location got a lot of scrutiny for its party setting on grounds that experienced some brutal circumstances. B018 sets in a former quarantine area or “karantina”.

Photo: Courtesy of B018

Twenty years earlier the desolate neighborhood was the site of a refugee camp that experienced genocide. Countless refugees were slaughtered and the camp was completely destroyed during the Lebanese Civil War. In the wake of the aftermath, the area was abandoned, until the club set up shop in the bunker.

Initial backlash was squashed by the realization that it was an actual representation of the history. A reminder that they danced through a warzone, as a sign of hope. Music was the driving force to get them through the face of terror, so once it was realized that is was not meant to be a slap in the face to other locals, it was widely accepted and eventually would turn into a worldwide travel destination for dancing machines from around the globe.

Photo: Courtesy of B018

The bunker has an iconic retractable roof and was designed with love by the curators and people behind B108. It sits in the middle of nowhere and is nearly impossible to find in the day time for first-time travelers. During the night the underground dance area blatantly lights up and draws an inviting aura to attract the rulers of the night.

With the rise of popularity and dance music clubs around Beirut, the pioneers that brought electronic dance music to the area in a time that nightclubs were basically nonexistent, B108 wanted to reestablish their selves as a dominating force in the dance party world.

In September of 2018, the group and the management team led by Ali Saleh decided that it was due time for a makeover of the iconic dancing mecca in Beirut, and they shut the doors during the renovations. They aimed to stay true to the roots, and not hide from the history of B108 while reinventing the stomping grounds.

They utilized the services of the world-renowned Lebanese, and original bunker architect Bernard Khoury and they stripped the entire interior. The upgrades to the relic involved improvements to sound, lights, atmosphere, design, and to add overall service experience enhancements. They kept the operational retractable roof to stay true to form.

B018 is officially back open for business as of December 2018. Overall reports from experiences at the bomb shelter are that of sheer magic. The already next level rave bunker went a step above with their upgrades. It is a hotspot for celebrities, famous artists, and wealthy travelers, and should be considered a bucket list item for all party people.