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Concierge.com

Israel Hotels

$400 or more
Editor's Pick
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American Colony Hotel
23 Nablus Rd.
Jerusalem
Israel
Tel: 972 2 627 9777
reserv@amcol.co.il
www.americancolony.com

The American Colony Hotel is a converted 19th-century pasha's palace within East Jerusalem, close to the walls of the Old City and the Damascus Gate. The Relais & Châteaux hotel was opened more than a century ago by an American family—hence the name—and has been lavishly appointed in East-meets-West style. Some suites have settees and canopy beds. Meals are served in an interior courtyard under the shade of palm trees, and the outdoor pool is enclosed by the regal stone walls of the former palace. It all adds up to a quiet escape from the city's hubbub, where you're likely to see everyone from visiting journalists and UN workers to wealthy Palestinian families out for a weekend lunch.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
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The Brown TLV
25 Kalisher Street
Tel Aviv
Israel 65165
Tel: 972 3 7170200
Tel: 972 3 7172020
hotel@browntlv.com
www.browntlv.com/?langId=2

Located just below the Bauhaus-rich White City and above Ottoman-era Neve Tzedek, this stylish hotel was crafted from a 1950s bank building whose former dull facade has been transformed into three floors of shiny brown columns and windows. Inside is a clubby reception area with leather couches and dark wood floors, an indoor-outdoor bistro, and a well-stocked library. The 30 smallish guest rooms contain custom-designed furniture, canopied beds, and glass-walled baths. The halls are festooned with the in-your-face photography of local artist Pilpeled, and on the roof is a sundeck with loungers and an outdoor shower. The Brown is perhaps the city's most centrally located independent hotel with a vibe that's both cool and hospitable, and the young staff offer the solutions-oriented style of service that can sometimes be charmless but gets the job done.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
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Dan Tel Aviv
99 Hayarkon Street
Tel Aviv
Israel 63432
Tel: 972 3 520 2525
www.danhotels.com/Deluxe-Hotel-Tel-Aviv

Owned by the same Israeli chain that runs Jerusalem's historic King David, the Dan is as close as Tel Aviv gets to a true grande dame: a landmark built in 1953 that still lures the city's most important (and deepest-pocketed) guests. But it's a grande dame in the most Israeli of ways: The landmark modernist structure has a kinetic multicolor facade painted by famous artist Yaacov Agam. A 2008 $7-million makeover turned the hotel into one of Tel Aviv's most modern, with Wi-Fi, iPod docks, and LCD TVs in roughly half of the hotel's 286 rooms. Capping it all is an oversized "forest" photo rendered in dramatically illuminated greens. The best rooms to book are the Sea View Executives, which are the only hotel rooms in town literally right on the Med (the others are all set back behind the waterfront promenade). Also on the sea are the Dan's main lobby lounge and new haute-kosher eatery D (with split dairy and meat menus).

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
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David Citadel
7 King David Street
Jerusalem
Israel 94101
Tel: 972 2 621 1111
reservations@tdchotel.com
www.thedavidcitadel.com

If it's a room with a view you're after, the 384-room David Citadel Hotel, which overlooks Jerusalem's Old City walls and the Tower of David, is hard to beat. Architect Moshe Safdie's design is both modern—with crisp, clean lines—and traditional, its Jerusalem limestone pillars and arches referring to the hotel's historic surroundings. To make the most of the location, you'll want to book one of the rooms that overlook the pool at the center of the U-shaped building; those on the other side of the hotel have the same patterned bedspreads, neutral color palette, and marble-clad bathrooms but lack balconies and the inspiring view of the Old City. Don't be fooled by the upscale–business hotel interior—the David Citadel is hugely popular with families (avoid the pool unless you're willing to dodge splashing children). At Scala restaurant and bar, chef Oren Yerushalmi (who trained at WD-50 and Bouley in New York), prepares a creative, kosher Mediterranean menu; the less formal Seasons restaurant serves an extensive Israeli buffet breakfast. For those who can't resist fitting in some shopping with their sightseeing, the hotel is a short stroll down Mamilla Avenue, a pedestrian boulevard lined with over 100 shops (both high-end Israeli brands and international favorites, such as Topshop), to the Old City's Jaffa Gate.—Lynn Suhrie

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
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David InterContinental
12 Kaufman St.
Tel Aviv
Israel
Tel: 972 3 795 1111
telaviv@interconti.com
www.intercontinental.com/telaviv

The splashiest luxury hotel in Tel Aviv, which opened in 1998, lies a bit outside the city center and is a favorite of corporate travelers because of its massive conference facilities and elaborate business center. Still, it managed to lure Madonna when she came to visit Israel in the fall of 2004. Perhaps what caught her eye was the hotel's large outdoor pool deck (which morphs into a hip lounge on balmy summer nights) or the location (just across from the beach). Its 555 units include just about every imaginable room configuration, from standard rooms to apartmentlike royal and presidential suites.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Hotel Cinema
1 Zamenhoff Street
Tel Aviv
Israel
Tel: 972 3 520 7100
Fax: 972 3 520 7107
www.atlashotels.co.il/en

The Hotel Cinema's original building dates to the 1930s, when it was known as the Esther Cinema, one of the first movie theaters in Tel Aviv. Today, the meticulously restored Bauhaus structure serves as a boutique property (one of the few in Israel), with 82 rooms and attentive service. With its on-site business center and Jacuzzi, the hotel is very much of the 21st century. But the owners have also kept original theater-era details such as movie posters, film projectors, and theater chairs. Best of all, the hotel's central location—in the heart of Tel Aviv's Dizengoff Circle—can't be beat.

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
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Hotel Montefiore
36 Montefiore Street
Tel Aviv
Israel 66883
Tel: 972 3 564 6100
www.hotelmontefiore.co.il

The 12-room Hotel Montefiore is Tel Aviv's first world-class boutique hotel, with perhaps the most cosmopolitan and stylish clientele in town—if not in all of Israel. Set in the heart of the UNESCO-designated White City's collection of Bauhaus buildings, the Montefiore inhabits a restored 1920s mansion and pays homage to both the quarter's architecture and its Mideast-meets-West aesthetic. Owners Mati and Ruti Broudo have been longtime neighborhood fixtures, running both the Coffee Bar and Brasserie restaurants. Hidden behind an Ottoman-era Mediterranean-style facade, the hotel's rooms come with private balconies and period furnishings including 1930s chairs, tables, and sofas by German Bauhaus designer Thonet—a form-follows-function counterpoint to the hotel's more elaborate exterior. Bath and body products come from local olive-oil firm Olia, and each room includes a library stocked with books on design, art, and travel. Downstairs, the Montefiore's restaurant is a clubby, dark, wood-lined spot that serves…surprise…haute southeast Asian cuisine. Standout dishes include Tom Yum seafood salad and sea bream in lemongrass cream. After hours, there's a menu of small bites (prosciutto with figs and melon, goat cheese with basil and tomatoes) along with a small yet successful wine list of mostly Israeli, French, and Italian bottles.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
Isrotel Dead Sea
Ein Bokek
Dead Sea
Israel 86980
Tel: 972 8 668 9666
www.isrotel.co.il/english/content/HotelPage.asp?HID=14

Israel's Dead Sea shoreline has always had its fill of spalike hotels, but they've generally fallen short on both style and service. Local chain Isrotel bucked the trend in 2008, investing millions to give a modern face-lift to a former Hyatt. The result is one of the country's top destination spas. Spread over nine floors, the hotel's 297 rooms come with white-on-white interiors, flat-screen TVs, expanded bathrooms with shower stalls, and airy balconies. All rooms come with prime views looking across the Dead Sea to Jordan. Accomodations on the two Moab floors include access to a lounge with small spreads at mealtime at a premium of roughly $100 per night—well worth it if you are traveling with kids. The new Ranch House restaurant is an American-style steak house at the lowest point on earth and a more formal (and indulgent) alternative to the main dining room's healthful fare. Best of all is the hotel's spa, where massages make use of mineral-rich Dead Sea mud and a quartet of sulfur pools, indoor/outdoor Jacuzzis, and dry and wet saunas supplement salty dips in the sea itself.

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
Isrotel Royal Beach
North Beach
Eilat
Israel
Tel: 972 8 636 8888
www.isrotel.co.il/English

The Royal Beach serves complimentary drinks and snacks twice a week in its towering atrium lobby, setting the tone for a level of service that is unusually spot-on in a city—and country—where service is rarely done right. The angular white-on-white hotel isn't as well-known as nearby Herod's Palace, even though it's home to Eilat's most tranquil spa: Book one of the 11 treatment rooms (perhaps the couple's suite) for a Decleor or Maria Galland service, or bake in the traditional Turkish hammam. Families dig the four pools and private beach. Of the 363 surprisingly large, whitewashed rooms (some of which were renovated in 2005 and now sport flat-screen TVs), opt for one on a high floor that faces south for the Red Sea views. The hotel's Vista restaurant is a buffet—but an elevated one, with fresh ingredients prepared into a dozen types of salads and traditional Jewish fare such as cholent.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
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King David
23 King David Street
Jerusalem
Israel
Tel: 972 2 620 8888
Reservations-T.KingDavid@DanHotels.com
www.danhotels.com

During the era of British rule, the venerable King David Hotel served as a home away from home for much of the English elite. More than 50 years later, the hotel continues to reign as Jerusalem's—if not Israel's—most lavish abode. While the sedate furnishings in neutral shades and floral prints in the 237 rooms could use a bit of a touch-up, the hotel's setting and amenities are beyond reproach: It's just a ten-minute walk from the Old City, and the outdoor pool is huge and set within elegant, manicured gardens. The building itself, with its pale stone facade, could easily hold its own against any of the European grandes dames after which it is modeled.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Le Méridien Dead Sea
Ein Bokek
Israel
Tel: 972 8 659 1234
Tel: 800 543 4300
www.lemeridien.com/deadsea

On the shores of the Dead Sea, Le Méridien is the most luxurious of the many hotels taking advantage of the medicinal, salt-filled waters. A holiday resort set on 12 landscaped acres, it has three swimming pools (including one for kids), a private beach, a children's program, and organized excursions to nearby desert sites such as Masada and Jericho. The 600 rooms are modern and handsomely appointed, some with private balconies high in the sky. The neo-classical Mineralia Spa is another reason to check in: It has 21 treatment rooms for massages, Dead Sea salt scrubs, and mud wraps.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
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Mamilla Hotel
11 King Solomon Street
Jerusalem
Jerusalem
Israel 94182
Tel: 972 2 5482222
reservations@mamillahotel.com
mamillahotel.com/

Just one block from the Old City, this 194-room newcomer is a chic respite from the capital's trademark chaos. Designed by Italian Piero Lissoni and Israel-born Moshe Safdie, the six-story complex consists of both historic and newly built, ultramodern spaces, all of which are covered in cream-colored Jerusalem stone. Although accommodations are small—basic rooms are just over 300 square feet—they're endowed with features like liquid crystal bathroom walls that turn opaque with the flip of a switch, deep rectangular tubs, and rain showers. Few rooms have views other than into neighboring courtyards or to the streets below, but with the hotel's proximity to major sights like the Tower of David, it hardly matters. A small wine bar serving the country's finest vintages sits adjacent to the lobby, while Mirror Bar is a moody and romantic spot that features nightly DJs churning out a mix of Middle Eastern and contemporary tunes. (Both bars close for Friday evening Sabbath.) During the warmer months, the rooftop lounge provides sweeping views of the Old City. Staff here eschew the Israeli gruff attitude that plagues many of the nearby luxury properties and are instead accommodating and attentive—in fact, each room is assigned a personal host.

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Mizpe Hayamim
Rosh Pina
Israel
Tel: 972 4 699 4555
Tel: 972 4 699 9555
info@mizpe-hayamim.com
www.mizpe-hayamim.com

Located 1,500 feet up Mount Canaan, in the Galilee region, Mizpe Hayamim is Israel's oldest hilltop retreat and a Relais & Châteaux property. Founded in 1967 by Erich Yaakov Yaruslavsky, a German refugee homeopath, this idyllic compound still reflects his approach to wellness. The 100-room hotel is a collection of rustic stone structures anchored by a central spa and a large swimming pool under a glass roof with spectacular views over the entire Hula Valley, straight to the Sea of Galilee. The extensive spa menu includes Ayurvedic oil massages and specialty Galilean Harmony treatments, which use natural ingredients sourced from the hotel gardens. Guest rooms are individually decorated in a style reminiscent of the French countryside (wrought-iron canopy beds, carved wooden armoires, freestanding tubs). Each room is equipped with an LCD TV, although you'll likely find the bird song and views from your private balcony more entertaining. Produce, dairy products, and bread are procured from the hotel's organic farm, which can be toured by guests. The harvest can be sampled at a vegetarian dinner buffet or the Muscat restaurant, where chef Haim Tibi prepares French-influenced menus that change daily. To work off the rich meals, guest can explore the hiking trails that meander over Mizpe Hayamim's 37-acre spread, and the artist colony of Rosh Pina is nearby.—Updated by Lynn Suhrie

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Neve Tzedek Hotel
4 Deganya Street
Tel Aviv
Israel
Tel: 972 54 207 0706
www.nevetzedekhotel.com

Historic Neve Tzedek is Tel Aviv's original hot 'hood, established in 1887 as the city's first Jewish district. Since that time—and in particular over the past two decades—the quarter has been popular with artists and writers and has attracted increasingly high-end restaurants, including the pan-Mediterranean bistro, Nana. Last year, Nana owner Golan Dor decided to branch out with the debut of his Neve Tzedek Hotel, a five-suite urban hideaway tucked into an elegantly restored Ottoman-era mansion. The suites are oversize—ranging from 500 to 1,200 square feet—with period details such as high ceilings, arched windows, and elegant plant-filled balconies. Two on the ground level include their own gardens; the penthouse has an alfresco hot tub; and all have a home-away-from-home feel with in-room wine cellars, fruit and chocolate displays, computers, and impressive levels of privacy. There is no formal restaurant, but the hotel is within walking distance of some of Tel Aviv's top tables and guests receive discounts at Nana itself.

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Nina Cafe Suites Hotel
29 Shabazi Street
Tel Aviv
Israel
Tel: 972 3 516 1767
eliza@ninacafehotel.com
www.ninacafehotel.com

In Tel Aviv's historic Neve Tzedek quarter, Nina Cafe Suites is a five-suite boutique hotel whose style and spirit is inspired by the owner's many trips to Paris. It's popular with Europeans seeking an alternative to Tel Aviv's big chains. Each suite has custom-designed furniture that evokes the South of France and slate-walled bathrooms, and is individually decorated with antique lamps and European-styled mirrors and accent furniture acquired in Israeli markets. The duplex garden suite, the largest and the only room with private outdoor space, is the one to get, but it books up weeks in advance. Room service and breakfast are delivered to your room from Nina Cafe, just across the street. Although there's no formal concierge, a full-time manager arranges local excursions, in-room spa treatments, and restaurant reservations.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Scots Hotel
1 Gdud Barak Street
Tiberias
Israel
Tel: 972 4 671 0710
scottie@netvision.net.il
www.scotshotels.co.il

Since the Scots Hotel opened in 2004 in the city of Tiberias, it has been a high-end retreat after a day of monument hopping for the Christian faithful on pilgrimages to the Holy Land. The Scots is housed in a former 19th-century hospital built by the Church of Scotland, with Arabic arches, cool courtyards, airy verandas with views of the sea, a cozy bar and lounge, and a restaurant that uses local produce. Most of the 69 rooms are in a modern wing with spare, standard decor to match, but 19 guest rooms are located in two of the original structures, where the exposed basalt walls and high ceilings lend the accommodations more character. The waterfront swimming pool and private beach on the Sea of Galilee are cooling escapes from the region's stifling summer heat. And the hotel's Church-affiliated management is on call to direct visitors to the area's numerous monasteries and historical sites. While the town itself is rather run-down, it's worth strolling along the waterfront promenade to enjoy the gorgeous lake views.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Sea Executive Suites
76 Herbert Samuel Street
Tel Aviv
Israel
Tel: 972 3 795 3434
sea@sea-hotel.co.il
www.sea-hotel.co.il

Families and business travelers looking for a longer-term alternative to Tel Aviv's big chains should consider a stay at Sea Executive Suites. It's like an apartment building dreamed up by the clever minds behind the W Hotel empire, complete with a well-equipped gym. The all-suite property's units have kitchens and separate sleeping and living areas decked out with modern furnishings in a palette of black, brown, and white. Most rooms also come with their own mini-offices and desktop computers, although concentrating on work might be tough, considering that the blue Mediterranean is across the street. Breakfast is served at the healthy Yotvata restaurant, which is beloved nationwide for its dairy products.

$200-$299
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Sheraton Tel Aviv Hotel and Towers
115 Hayarkon Street
Tel Aviv
Israel
Tel: 972 3 521 1111
Fax: 972 3 523 3322
www.sheraton.com/telaviv

Among the numerous five-star hotels lining Tel Aviv's Mediterranean promenade, none can quite compete with the Sheraton Tel Aviv. Located just above prime sunning spots like Gordon Beach and near Dizengoff Street's shopping, the 331-room Sheraton also scores points for its Mediterranean-inspired Olive Leaf restaurant, outdoor pool, and high-tech, exec-friendly tower rooms with tropical-inspired decor. While its pool and fitness center are not the largest in town, the Sheraton offers every amenity necessary—along with regular special packages for family and holiday travel.

Information may have changed since the date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.