Destination Guide


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Photo by David Rodrigo

Like a suitcase bursting at the seams, Jerusalem stuffs historical thrall and religious intrigue in with a burgeoning culinary scene and a blossoming, albeit complex, cultural dynamic.


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Interior View - Waldorf Astoria Jerusalem , Jerusalem, Israel

Waldorf Astoria Jerusalem

The Waldorf Astoria opened in 2014 after a full renovation, during which it was rebuilt from local Jerusalem stone. With large public places and ample light streaming in from all angles, the hotel has a welcoming, airy feeling. The Waldorf is within walking distance to the Old City and the famed Jaffa Gate, as well as the open-air Mamilla Mall. This convenient location makes it easy for travelers to tour the historical city on foot from their doorstep.

Of the 226 guest rooms there are 29 suites, with many connecting options for families. The large marble bathrooms include televisions concealed in the mirrors, making it easy to catch up on current news from the enormous freestanding tub. Some of the rooms have small balconies, though the lack of views may be disappointing to travelers who expect to see the Old City from the hotel (like you can at the King DavidDavid Citadel and Mamilla).

The on-property dining options include the Mediterranean-inspired Palace restaurant and King’s Court, serving a curated roster of wines and cocktails and kosher Italian cuisine. There is currently a fitness center, and a brand new spa and lap pool are slated to open in 2018, rounding out the luxurious amenities.

Lobby at The King David Hotel, Jerusalem, Israel

The King David Hotel

Owned by the Israeli Dan Hotels group, the property offers a true luxury experience in a country that lacks many high-end hotels. Its history, views, lobby, pool, guests—all combine to make for a hotel that has a palpable sense of place, even if some of the rooms, though plush, are slightly generic.

In just ten minutes you might see a government official’s security team milling about the lobby; a movie producer introducing her creative team to potential backers; and tight-faced ladies in satin evening coats who would look perfectly at home in Palm Beach. (Probably they’re even from Palm Beach.) You’ll be at the undisputed VIP center of Jerusalem. Only if you are looking for a cool, contemporary aesthetic should you stay elsewhere; the hotel is not a time capsule but it’s hardly minimal or sleek. Otherwise make sure you have a room on the back, with views of the Old City’s walls, and settle in to a hotel that continues to play its own role in the city’s history.

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