1- When was Amar founded ?And what inspired the name choice?
Amar Restaurant opened its first ever outlet in Harissa back in 2014. As you may know, picking a name for a restaurant, notably in Arabic, can be particularly hard these days given that there are lots of Lebanese restaurants in Lebanon. We therefore hired several consulting companies to come up with a name but it was all in vain until my dad Mr. Carol Atallah ultimately came up to me and suggested ‘Amar’ as a name.
2- Do you any expansion plans underway,such as franchising or expanding abroad?
While conducting our market research in the area, we noticed that there isn’t a restaurant as such within the area since restaurants in the Harissa mountains are generally of a much simpler concept. We saw in this an opportunity to try and raise the bar by opening a five-star restaurant with premium quality food and great service, which helped us stand out from the neighboring crowd. As for our second restaurant, Amar Seaside, we waited until Amar Harissa had strongly established its name in the market and built loyal clientele before hunting for the second location. Directly facing the sea, this new branch offers a revamped traditional and seafood menu with a breathtaking view, which is why it fit Amar’s portfolio in terms of opening all of its branches in truly unique locations across Lebanon.
3- Who are your clients? How much do the Harissa branch clients differ from those of the Antelias Branch?
Amar is only three years old, and there still is so much potential for us in Lebanon. We have plans for expanding our restaurants in Lebanon, Beirut in particular, so that Amar would have a convenient location anywhere on the map. We are also undertaking active meetings with several franchisees willing totake Amar to the GCC.
Amar is for everyone. Clients at Amar range from 20 to 70 years of age. It is perfect for brunches, lunches, dinners and all types of celebratory occasions such as engagements, baptisms and pre-weddings. The clientele is almost the same across both branches but Amar Harissa attracts more tourists coming from all across the world because of its panoramic view of Jounieh Bay while Amar Seaside attracts more seafood enthusiasts.
4- Trying your dishes equates a unique Lebanese Fine dining experience.How would you define your cuisine ? And how often do you update your menus?
Amar is constantly updating its menu. Amar Harissa offers exceptional Lebanese mezza with mashawi, but when we opened Amar Seaside, we updated our menu with a unique selection of seafood mezza and an extensive fish display. Our seasoned chefs across both branches are keen on delivering premium quality dishes where authentic flavors and fresh ingredients collide in delicious harmony.
5- Tell us more about your recruitment process and overall work envoirment.?
Amar is always seeking to recruit fresh talent and people whom we think might have an added value to our operational process, be it in terms of service or inside the kitchen. Our employees work together in a cordial family environment that we have created and developed over the years in order to maintain loyalty, dedication and passion among our staff so that they may serve our clientele to perfection.
6- How does Amar Deal with competition from similar Lebanese Restaurants?what is your take on the Hospitality sector in Lebanon?
I think that having competition is nice and beneficial as it will drive you to always work harder and strive to be the best, which in turn helps the restaurant develop and provide better service for the customer. The only party that’s profiting from extensive competition are the customers who want to eat good Lebanese food. The hospitality level in Lebanon is one of the best in the world and it’s mostly due to fair competition.
7- On which basis do you set your pricing strategies?
Our prices are engineered according to the quantity-quality ratio. We use high quality ingredients to ensure customer satisfaction and try as much as possible to please everyone with our pricing strategies.
8- Who is Karl Attallah?
Karl Atallah is the Founder of Amar Restaurants, heading the concept from A-to-Z across two different locations in Harissa and Antelias Seaside Road. He graduated from the Lebanese American University with a degree in Marketing and has worked in the fields of marketing and operations for five years prior to establishing the Amar Franchise. Driven by a remarkable passion for his work, he is always on the lookout for opportunities to expand his business and was able to make a respectable name for himself in the Lebanese F&B industry within a short time span.