The past few days I was really fortunate to revisit the Sinai peninsula, amongst a large group of dear friends, mostly artists and designers, extremely talented people like the visionary photographer Hussien Shabaan and his radiant wife the interior designer Habiba, the giant designer Ahmed Hafez (Fizo) whom I interviewed before on this blog, and his wife Lamis and jubilant son Zain, the talented and charismatic illustrator and designer Ahmed abdel monem, the unique and energetic designer Tameem Youness, the sensitive musician Amir and his wife Lobna .. amongst many others. We all took a caravan of cars and headed east out of Cairo towards the land of sun, mountains and sea.

My friend Yahya and his wife Heba, two talented artists I went to Fine Arts college ten years ago, invited me over to join them on the ride there. Accompanied by their cute daughter Alia, the trip, even though it was lengthy (6 hr drive), was eye-opening. On our way we stopped at the local On the Run in the suburb of Maadi, we supplied ourselves with snacks and Yahya picked up the Angham LP (Mahadesh yehasebny) (Nobody judge me), (Which has an awesome cover design) a catchy tune called Layaly starts off the mini LP, between that and another Egyptian singer called Abo el Leef, that is pretty much what we listened to!

The drive was filled with jaw-dropping scenery, from ancient mountain formations slowly fading away infront of the giant that is Time, to the astounding cliffs and cloud scenes. We were heading to a place situated just next to Taba called Ananda. A humble yet, beautiful secluded resort. The word resort seems even a bit too fancy for the place, but the energy from the place was so refreshing, mainly due to the manager “Ezz” an elderly kind welcoming soul who constantly sits in the main hut of the resort and provides a really warm atmosphere, typical Sinai hospitality.

Upon our arrival, we were greeted by some friends that arrived a bit earlier, took our bags to our respective huts on the beach and returned for a delightful meal. The system over there is pretty simple and efficient. For the duration of the whole stay you can eat and drink as you like, simply mention your hut number and your orders will be tallied up upon your departure (for the record, the four days I stayed, cost me 550 Egyptian pounds, everything included, thats roughly 100 US$!)

The days over there eerily feel 85hrs long, I mean that in a good way. You can sleep, wake up, eat, lie on a hammock on the beach, sleep, wake up, eat again and only 2 hours would have passed. very very long which makes the whole experience that much more amazing. My favorite past-time was falling asleep on the beach till sunrise and then strolling around. On one of the days a group of us ventured out to this place called “Castle Zaman” which literally translates into “Olden days Castle”. Situated above a massive cliff just a couple Kilometres before Ananda, the view from above is even more astounding than below, after a scrumptious sun cooked meal that consisted of Lamb, crabs, shrimp, Turkey and rice (which you have to order in advance), we headed to the pool situated in the lower deck. Life is good.

I returned last night at 12 and after a brief stop to have some Sushi together, we all went home. Today I’m looking forward to exploring the older part of Cairo, A place that I used to goto a lot during my days at Fine Arts college to draw for hours and hours the ancient Islamic mosques and ruins. Stay tuned for more!



+ five = 11

Hi, I'm Ibraheem Youssef
I'm a Creative,
currently based in Toronto.

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