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Men enjoy bathing at ancient Damascus hammam - 2014

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Syrian men have for centuries been bathing in traditional hammams, or bathhouses. The tradition continues in Damascus today - and provides a brief escape from the turmoil of a country in civil war. STORYLINE: Here in the Al-Malik al-Zahir bathhouse in the old city of Damascus, the timeless tradition of public bathing continues. It is hard to imagine the conflict raging elsewhere in Syria, when here all is tranquillity. The sound of splashing water, the patter of wooden clogs, men's quiet conversation. The hammam is a tradition that goes back centuries and still follows the same routine. Bathers change out of their clothes, wrap a cloth round their waist and put on a pair of wooden clogs, or "kabkabs". Attendants hand each bather a bowl containing soap and a sponge. Bathers then shower before progressing into the inner steam room. The owner and manager Bassam Kabab says the Al-Malik al-Zahir hammam is more than a thousand years old. "Al-Malik al-Zahir bathhouse is considered the oldest Hammam in Syria and it might be the oldest in the world," he says. "What I am sure of hundred percent is that it is the oldest in Syria. It was built in 985 A.D. which means it is 1,029 years old." Once in the steam room, some bathers choose to have an attendant give them an invigorating exfoliating back rub, or a relaxing massage. At the end, swaddled in fresh robes to dry off, bathers relax with a hot mint tea and a hookah pipe, known an argilah, a water pipe used for smoking flavoured tobacco. Although the hammam still attracts locals, tourists no longer visit due to the Syrian conflict. "There are two kinds of customers of the bathhouse: locals and tourists. Nowadays only locals visit the Hammam because tourism is not like in the old days. In winter, locals used to come to the Hammam, while in the spring and summer most of our customers used to be tourists, both Arabs and foreigners," Kabab says. The Romans introduced public bath houses to Syria when the land was part of the Roman Empire and the tradition has remained popular ever since. The hammam became an important place for the local community and there used to be hundreds in Damascus alone. But as modern bathrooms in Syrian homes replace public bathing, the popularity of hammams is waning and there are now fewer than 20 left in the capital, according to research by travel writer Richard Boggs. The Al-Malik al-Zahir hammam still attracts loyal customers, however: "I have been coming to the bathhouse my whole life. I have done it for the last 30 or 40 years. It is bliss for me. When I have pain in my feet or back, I come here to get refreshed. I love coming to the bathhouse," says one regular, Khalil. Although the bathhouse is a tranquil haven, it is still affected by the turmoil of Syria's civil war, which has killed more than 190,000 people and left much of the country in ruins. "We have problems with the water and electricity, even with the fuel. But we are managing to solve this problem and run the bathhouse," says Kabab. Although the Syrian capital has been heavily protected by Syrian President Bashar Assad's forces, rebel mortar attacks on government-controlled areas have become daily occurrences. For his customers, however, Kabab's hammam can provide some respite from the world outside. You can license this story through AP Archive: http://www.aparchive.com/metadata/you... Find out more about AP Archive: http://www.aparchive.com/HowWeWork
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Text Comments (121)
Broccoli Beefed (4 days ago)
I'm trying to understand why public baths aren't popular everywhere in the world. They are rare in USA.
Zaky Zaky0007 (2 days ago)
America is not in the level for spirituality then for arabic and turkish goods things ... Sorry To say thé reality... Désolée mon petit mais, oui ton pays n'est pas au niveau...!
Zaky Zaky0007 (2 days ago)
In Belgium, Morocco ... I Will go tomorrow 😉
MrMogwali1 (3 days ago)
They used to be quite common over here in the UK. Many municipally owned public baths closed down because buildings were too costly to repair, and also fewer people were using them as time went on.
soeur descombre (5 days ago)
Westerns use to say that arab men are pervert but when i read the comment section. There's only westerns who talk about sex and homosexuality... Sorry people are not like u
Arnold Stollar (5 days ago)
The Koran forbids homosexual contact.
Muhammad ibn 'Abdullah (1 month ago)
I was there for the first time when I was 12. So many gys fucked me :D I loved it. I was living near by this hammam and at least 3 times a weak I was there. I cannot count how many men I had. I loved it :D
Zaky Zaky0007 (2 days ago)
You are fake in all🤥🤥🤥, stupid guy ! So bad you are and crazy, respect goods peoples with them spirituality not like you sioniste you are ! 😠
xymena klucznik (1 month ago)
يخرب بيتن كلن بيطقو براغي لبعض وكان صاحبي ابوزكريا عوده من معضمية القلمون
حمام الملك الظاهر بيبرس شتغلت فيه علدور ابوالحكم ابوفهد وابوعلي الباشا عام 1996
Imraz Bashir (1 month ago)
I have been there enjoyed alot
Broccoli Beefed (2 months ago)
Gee, no digusting elephant seals in the disguise of human form walking around like you see too much of in the USA
Broccoli Beefed (2 months ago)
I wish we had these in the USA...
Sandris Lazdins (2 months ago)
Christopher Canale (2 months ago)
Wow I love this wonderful,
patoche renaud (3 months ago)
humm ça doit être bien pour faire du touche pipi !!!!
Zaky Zaky0007 (2 days ago)
Quoi ...? Non mais, quelle genre d'éducation de rue c'est ça ou tout simplement de la jalousie comme toujours ...! Vous ne changerez donc jamais, j'ai pitié mais, qu'est ce que tu es dégoûtant et, je ne t'y accepterai pas moi, chez moi des gens saints pas des déchets de la nature !
hassan comédie (3 months ago)
انا خبير مصاج لفرصة عمل اتصل . 212620244414
Nyoman Prawiro (3 months ago)
I pray for Syrian People May they have recovery & peace as soon as possible GBU Syrian People With love from Jakarta Inonesia
Stone W (4 months ago)
For those of you who don't speak Arabic I'll translate for you. "What happens in the steam room stays, stays in the steam room! You say anything and we'll cut your head off and parade it down the streets! You understand? Thought you did. Sh... Now, my brother, welcome! Come on in. (*wink)"
DAVID REYES (4 months ago)
What it must be like to be filthy rich and have a huge steam bath room in your castle.
LikeItIs (4 months ago)
Men have always found ways to get together and "bathe!"
S S (4 months ago)
what I personally find "prudish" here in these muslim baths is that they're not naked not even when they have a shower together, that means there is a form of malice and suspicion one towards the other...in various European countries, fortunately, like Austria, Switzerland, Germany and the very northern part of Italy (not to mention Finland orsome others) in saunas etc at least men feel at ease with their own naked bodies in the presence of other men, exactly as it should be, and that's nothing to do with sex or something related to sex
Broccoli Beefed (2 days ago)
The real reason is because men are pigs and there would be a lot of hanky panky going on. I'm sure there is a lot going on anyhow. Also they might just be clothed for the video
ryan ball (1 month ago)
+Stone W ugh shut the fuck up. It was his opinion.
Stone W (3 months ago)
Aftab Shaikh thank you . . .
Aftab Shaikh (3 months ago)
+Stone W One of the most positively assertive statement I've ever read. What a simple way to put forth your point
Stone W (4 months ago)
It's simply a different culture with different sensibilities. Why can't you simply accept their ways? You don't have to project your own way of doing and seeing things onto every other culture in the world. The differences are what makes traveling and getting to know people from around the world interesting. I'm Western, and I don't have any hang ups about nudity. But if you ask me, I prefer to keep my clothes on. Not everyone feels comfortable being naked. Learn to respect that.....
saif q (4 months ago)
Is it ok in islam ?
Zaky Zaky0007 (2 days ago)
Why not ? Sure it's ok ! Waw up ...! 🤔😐😑🙄
saif q yes u r right,I'm a body massager in India 8371979185whtsp no
Rabie Bellounis (4 months ago)
ARIES (4 months ago)
I think is better be naked.. 😜
william burnham (2 months ago)
DANCE MUSIC VIDEO (2 months ago)
ARIES yah🤤🤤 i loved
Руслан Дряев (3 months ago)
william burnham (3 months ago)
Zulkarnaen mohd zakaria (3 months ago)
Yes,you right
See What I Did There? (4 months ago)
Did I translate this video into English from a different language? Why was there not a subtitle, or voiceover translation?
Zaky Zaky0007 (2 days ago)
What do you want to know, he le speaking over the ''hammam'' very good against toxins in the body and To have a very clean and Nice skin for long time etc... In Syria but, it's finish now, Emmanuel Macron haved send a big explosition so there are nothing now in Syria...!!!
Aho Greggor (4 months ago)
and the terrorist waiting here
Zaky Zaky0007 (2 days ago)
You are the terrorist with your gouvernement of America, France, Israël so shut up you are ridiculous !!! 😡😡😡
kenny kouches (4 months ago)
I don't know why they have these in Argentina, but it was absolutely one of the highlights of my travels to South America. When he finished, i told him let's start over again and it only 4 USD! Best 8 bucks I ever spent!!
soeur descombre (5 days ago)
Maybe because there's lebanese and syrian in argentina
Aram SYRIAN (4 months ago)
I am Syrian but never tried this Hammam.. I will soon, it cost 2 to 4 $
Samara Hanin (4 months ago)
احلا حمام والله حمام سوريا
Julian Solis (4 months ago)
El peludo me calento la hormona
Zaky Zaky0007 (2 days ago)
Pfff 😯😕 ridiculous
Stop hair fall soon (4 months ago)
So ancient
DANCE MUSIC VIDEO (4 months ago)
1:58 i like herman😍😍🤤
didier lamboley (4 months ago)
Comment ça doit faire du bien ....
Gobaloussamy Ravy (2 days ago)
+Zaky Zaky0007 merci beaucoup pour votre réponse
Zaky Zaky0007 (2 days ago)
+Gobaloussamy Ravy et huiles essentielles, argiles verte/grise la totale et, le top, à la fin une friction à l EAU de rose mhhh
Zaky Zaky0007 (2 days ago)
C'est le top, j'y vais tantôt et, ça sera un hammam de Fes sur Bruxelles mhhh le top, la relaxation, propreté impeccable, soins dermatologiques, la détente et, à ma sortie thé marocain et, crêpes au miel etc... Le top pour s'évader, bien dormir, un spa thalassothérapie ne fera jamais mieux, j'en ai pas vu en tous cas ... J'en ferai un incha Allah 😉
Gobaloussamy Ravy (4 months ago)
didier lamboley bonjour Mr, cela type de massage avec huile chaude, après vous allez dormir
Rahmat Sastro (4 months ago)
Woow i like it
samir yabghi el fechlouq (4 months ago)
I am Algerian, when the war ends, I will go to my lovely Damascus to bathe there and certainly to have some good Syrian Dick in me coz I have got insatiable deep asshole which could take huge dicks... Are Syrian dicks really big? Who knows?
yellow driver 602 (4 months ago)
To bad none are gay. Because if they were they would tell and that person would be stoned to death. So I know I would not come out alive. Lolol
Broccoli Beefed (2 days ago)
They don't have to be gay. They fuck on the down low there...
nyc nyc (4 months ago)
Ha. This is a gay bathroom.
Stone W (4 months ago)
No it isn't.
Roger Propes (4 months ago)
I've been in one in Turkey and at least there they never see one another nude; when it's time to wash down there they hand you the cloth and vaguely gesture.
john stolar (4 months ago)
Do you know how much a spa like this in the US would cost?
Afizan Weston (4 months ago)
Stupid cultures Syiah
10mintwo (4 months ago)
Syria has some of the most beautiful masculine young men in the world. Too bad about the deranged religion.
soeur descombre (5 days ago)
Toi bad that you exist
Aiden W (7 days ago)
+Broccoli Beefed He was Kurdish Man from Iraq
Broccoli Beefed (2 months ago)
Not just Syria. Arabic men are some of the most gorgeous in the world. In Saudi Arabia they paid some a lot of money to leave the country because they were too beautiful. Women were talking about them all the time. I remember reading a story about it somewhere
ABDULAZIZ MAKZOUM (4 months ago)
Juan haha bist du Deutscher?
Juan (4 months ago)
10mintwo I had dated with one of them here in Germany... and he is the sexiest man I have ever dated
atlantic1119 (4 months ago)
Handsome Arab men!
william burnham (3 months ago)
atlantic1119 yes
keltin quesnel (4 months ago)
Its a bath house ! Massage with happy endings :)
Broccoli Beefed (2 days ago)
@ keltin quesnel, spoken like a typical USA dunce who can't separate sex from nudity or his own primal debauched repression. You have more churches than any country, yet you're the most spiritless simpletons on the planet
Robert Robrahn (4 months ago)
keltin quesnel. So is your mouth you fuckin closet fag. HAHAHAHAHA!!!! Stupid bitch!🍆💦👅
Juan (4 months ago)
Ben Dover don’t project your hetero-tendencies. Homosexuality is part of humanity from the beginning... it means thousands and thousands of years before people started fantasizing with f** religion
Kalitoz Kaliente (4 months ago)
Ben Dover jajaja u funny
Ben Dover (4 months ago)
Don’t project your homo-tendencies. Hammams have been in existence way before you started fantasizing you f***
Dimitri Haddad (9 months ago)
1032 years old really interesting
rolf s (10 months ago)
I find hammans very homo erotic
Elias Makeup (11 months ago)
mohamed amine kammas (1 year ago)
رائع ♡♡♡♡♡♡♡
Juan (4 months ago)
mohamed amine kammas sexy man 😘
الحين مافي بيوتهم حمام يتروشون فيه؟ ؟ ؟ ولا
I was there in 2009 what an experience. U come up scrubbed and feeling so fresh
Mohamed Awad (4 months ago)
D antika كيف
D antika (4 months ago)
الحمامات فيها بخار طبيعي وتدليك حجر وسبحان الله تطلع منتعش ومرتاح ومزاجك جميل
sam brimo (1 year ago)
ohhh are those men doing orgy sex? what is huge sauna for ? i hope they are using condoms
gm Soyls (1 year ago)
a place for child bride rapists and bum fuckers. what will the Islamic world condone next?
Ako (1 year ago)
pedosta and weiner
BroccoliQueefed (2 years ago)
I've often wondered why the USA doesn't have places like this
Patrick Galle (3 months ago)
They have them in New York. Russian bath houses.
Michael JonesDougherty. (4 months ago)
BroccoliQueefed they did in the 80 90s they got closed .
Etienne Sugihara (4 months ago)
We do now mostly owned by Korean and it's for the whole family to come in and joy the Korean and Japanese bath experience and very good environment I am a member of the one I nearby and is very environments and good for socialize as well Google Korean sauna and Spa in your area see if you can find one
mark bay (4 months ago)
BroccoliQueefed because Merika is full of hateful bigoted right winged religious cults
rence fernan (4 months ago)
Bcause they know how to take a bath them self..
Sammerellie (2 years ago)
3:57, what the hell was that!?!?! AMAZING
Broccoli Beefed (2 days ago)
I was more worried about that bird
Buddy Hatfield (4 months ago)
Sammerellie q
Ako (7 months ago)
Sammerellie dude perfect
warrior race (2 years ago)
it was flying towel 😂😂😂
Shams Qasr (2 years ago)
Seems like a great experience of the senses... I wanna go!!
fantastic man (2 years ago)
i missed this place when everything is still ok in Syria. I hate some of my syrian colleagues but I love most of them bcoz of their situation now. but i hope some of these arrogant syrian have to show goodness to their country men
Kateryna Stepanova (2 years ago)
Hope, all the people in this video are doing well. Hope, they are in the safe place with their loved ones. Hope, it will be peace over the Siriyan land.
Muhammed Deri (4 months ago)
Kateryna Stepanova j
yang yang (4 months ago)
Alex (2 years ago)
What a nice thing to say. We need more people like you.
oh a very big thank from syria to you
Chris Gardiner (2 years ago)
Love to go here to bathe. Refreshing.
Lolo Lolo (4 months ago)
Chris Gardiner نتعالفف
MESHO N (4 months ago)
Chris Gardiner let’s chat private
narendra babu (4 months ago)
Chris Gardiner 9581745502
Juan (4 months ago)
Sexy man 😘

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