Five Things to Do in Cairo This Week
This edition of Five Things to Do in Cairo This Week takes you from Egyptian hip-hop to the violin and then into the heavens with the city’s newest bar and a culinary offer you cannot miss. Enjoy!
As it stands right now, in 2013, hip-hop as both art and industry has come to be defined by the antics of the Kanye Wests of the world and the bubble gum feminism of the Nicki Minajs of other ungodly worlds. Granted, the self-immortalised Kanye has probably been the most exciting figure in music for the last decade, but it’s a far cry from the hip-hop that those of us who are approaching thirty grew up with.
In Deeb, we have a man – an Egyptian one at that – who, had he been rapping in New York in the mid-to-late nineties, would probably have been signed to legendary underground hip-hop label, Rawkus Records – the label that propelled the likes of Talib Kwali and Mos Def.
This week, Deeb makes a rare public appearance at Maadi café-come-gallery-come-performance-venue, Mizan. Having released 2012 album, The Cold Peace, the rapper, poet and social commentator, is currently working on his next release in California but will have no issues readjusting to the distinctly non-underground Maadi and its confusing roads. Just get the Metro instead.
As we approach summer in Cairo and draw up plans to survive the heat in Ramadan, we can’t help but feel a twinge of sadness. Spring in Cairo is a pleasant time and you needn’t let go of it quite yet, thanks to the InterContinental Semiramis.
The Nile-side hotel in Downtown has seen its share of hard times – specifically in January of this year when it was rather heinously attacked by flip-flop wearing hoodlums and allegedly suffering hundreds of thousands of pounds of damage.
It was a PR catastrophe, but one that the hotel has been slowly recovering from with a ‘Spring Festival’. Though it isn’t exactly a festival in the traditional sense, this little scheme has bred some pretty nifty offers and an obsession with the number 99. The most impressive aspect of the festival? How about all you can eat for 99LE at all of the hotel’s restaurants, including one of the best restaurants in Cairo, Birdcage. It ends on June 30th, though; for more info, click here.
Contrary to conjecture, Cairo’s nightlife scene is flourishing in the most peculiar of ways. An apt example of this lays at the Kempinksi Nile. In collaboration with the Godfather himself, DJ Amr Hosny, the Garden City hotel has, with a few licks of paint here and there, transformed its cosy rooftop space into Cloudeleven; the newest addition to Cairo’s bar scene.
Having attended the opening, there wasn’t one member of the Cairo 360 team that wasn’t impressed. Cloudeleven works on that old principle which says that less is more. Hosny and associates have let the location speak for itself.
This week, Cloudeleven is hosting one of its biggest events to date, Skyline Dance. Brought to you by perennial party planners, Insomnia, the night’s music is anchored by Hosny himself, so house music will be at a premium – a plus in our books.
Cairenes are a creative people that catharsis eternally eludes. A big chunk of our working day is often spent wading through emails of questions and queries, a recurring one of which is in regards to music lessons.
Granted, the majority are looking for guitar and piano lessons, but there are a select number of potential musical prodigies in our ranks that aspire to be the next Jascha Heifetz or even Niccolo Paganini – those are famous violinists, obviously.
We like to do our bit for the arts and, by popular demand, have put together a little guide to the best violin courses and instructors in the city. It could be your first step to stardom; you can pick up egomania and delusions of grandeur on the way.
Egypt’s museums have suffered most in the last few years, with the Ministry of Culture in complete shambles. Some are operating on a bare minimum, while others have been temporarily closed altogether – though some may argue that this is still better than having the biggest TV star in the world, Zahi Hawass, at the helm.
The Museum of Islamic Art has been at the centre of speculation over the past few months on several high profile travel websites. Some have claimed that the museum has been closed, but we’re happy to report that it is actually very open.
As one of the newest in Egypt, this is what every museum in the country should look like. The curation in itself is fantastic; beautifully crafted pieces are set against a clean, all-white interior, making the museum seem more like a trendy exhibition than a museum akin to a graveyard that is the Egyptian Museum in Downtown. In conclusion; well worth a visit.
Have a great week!