Inside photo of the “ultra-luxury members’ club” owned by Carlos Ghosn. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Inside photo of the “ultra-luxury members’ club” owned by Carlos Ghosn.

Carlos Ghosn opened an exclusive club in Beirut, Lebanon's capital, with an annual membership fee of 1.4 million yen.

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The Monty Club” had been closed after the explosion. Ghosn, the real owner, reopened it this September.

This man still does not seem to have given up on his return to the international community.

Carlos Ghosn, 68, who is still on the run in Lebanon, has opened an exclusive club in Beirut, the capital of the country.

The location is in a high-rise building rising in the center of Beirut.” It is only three kilometers away from the site of the Beirut port explosion that killed 218 and injured approximately 7,000 people in August 2008. The club is called the “Monty Club. It is an exclusive members-only club that only those who become members can use.

The club opened once in December 2008, but was soon closed due to the explosion. It reopened in early September of this year. The club’s registered owner is a businessman who runs a telecommunications company in Lebanon, but Ghosn is the actual owner.

The businessman is a close friend of Ghosn’s, but it is Ghosn who has invested the most money and owns the club. It is a common practice of Ghosn to do business behind the scenes without mentioning his name.

The club’s website says that it offers “unparalleled ambience, service, and a sophisticated menu,” and the interior is decorated in a gorgeous style, offering a completely private space for events and business meetings while enjoying fine food, wine, and cigars. However, the club is not open to everyone. To become a member, one must pass a rigorous pre-screening process and pay a hefty annual membership fee of $10,000 (approximately 1,440,000 yen).

In Lebanon, where the economy is in crisis and people are struggling to make ends meet, the only people who can afford to pay $10,000 are the super elite in the political and business worlds. Ghosn is apparently hoping to deepen his relationship with these ruling classes by sending them invitations to the club.

In Lebanon, the annual inflation rate has exceeded 200% due to political corruption spurred by the explosion in 2008 and the Ukraine crisis. Soaring prices have plunged more than 70% of the population into a state of poverty, and they continue to be unable to afford satisfactory meals. In August, a man, enraged by the fact that he could not withdraw his own savings, took bank employees hostage and holed himself up in a bank.

Amidst this situation, parliamentary elections will be held this November to choose a successor to President Michel Aung, who has completed his six-year term in office. Behind the establishment of this exclusive club, Ghosn’s never-drying ambition is transparent.

He has announced that he will support a Christian Maronite university, which has a large congregation among Lebanon’s ruling class, and he has invited the heads of a number of world-class companies to give lectures. This time, the exclusive club is part of that. Big-name politicians also come to the club. By establishing strong ties with them, he is aiming to become a minister after the presidential election. In Lebanon, there are cases where ministers are appointed from the private sector,” said a Lebanese government official.

As is well known, Ghosn is seeking “immunity from arrest. He believes that if he becomes a minister at the center of the country, he will not be arrested even if he leaves the country. Is there any chance that Ghosn will become minister this coming November?

There is very little support from the public. When he was the head of Nissan, about 80% were proud of him, but now about 70% dislike him. Also, Lebanon’s presidential race is heavily influenced by France, the former mandate country. President Macron hates Ghosn and is also wanted internationally by French prosecutors. I think it is unlikely that he will be appointed minister. ……

Ghosn is a major shareholder in a Lebanese bank and also manages a number of businesses, including a hotel and a winery, and is said to have assets of approximately 7 billion yen even today. He is also a major shareholder in a Lebanese bank and owns a number of businesses, including a hotel and a winery. It is likely that he will take further steps to realize his ambitions.

The annual membership fee of $10,000 is extremely expensive in Lebanon, which is in the midst of an economic crisis, and only the super elite of the political and business world can enter.
The luxurious interior of the club. The club’s website advertises “unparalleled atmosphere and service.
The club also offers fine wines, cigars, and steaks. Through this social gathering place, Ghosn intends to build a pipeline to the political world.

FRIDAY, October 14, 2022

  • Reporting and writing Shun Kirishima (Journalist)

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