Giovanna Silva, Palmyrah
12 × 17 cm, 60 p, ills colour, Buckram hardcover, English
Published by Art Paper Editions
Giovanna Silva captured the long gone glory of Palmyra, a legendary hotel in Baalbek, Lebanon. She leads us through old and charming rooms that breathe out the once decadent soul of the hotel. Pale colours, wall cracks, the smell of old wooden furni-ture and Persian rugs take you on a journey into the past. At the same time, we feel the current presence of war and decay. Out of the windows of the Palmyra one can see the ruins of the ancient Roman temple of Heliopolis. For this reason lots of tourists and academics visited the hotel since its opening in 1874. The hotel has not closed for a day since that time. Its popularity attracted international figures such as Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone, Jean Cocteau and Charles de Gaulle, but due to impact of the war on the border with Syria and an economic depression in general, the hotel now stands empty.