At a Glance
Historical Jerusalem takes a back seat when guests enter this sleek, modern property.
From the lobby of the Mamilla, it is only a seven-minute, almost-straight walk to the nearest gate that leads into the Old City. True, you go through the Mamilla Mall (unrelated to the hotel), lined mostly with indistinguishable boutiques, but the ease of access is terrific, and many visitors to Jerusalem agree that the hotel’s location is unbeatable.
Public spaces are equally impressive—the lobby’s thick, high, blond stone walls are a gorgeous homage to the Old City’s. Minimally furnished—with a Mies chaise and a Saarinen table set like sculptures next to an all-glass coffee table bearing precious few books—the lobby, like the rest of the property, is promisingly contemporary. Once you’re in the rooms upstairs, though, the drawbacks of style over substance can become apparent. There are few hooks on which to hang towels or clothes in the bathrooms, and the lights in some of the adjacent dressing rooms are dim. To watch the TV in the living room, it is necessary to slide back a wall-size door that covers it; this then closes off the bedroom and bathroom, which means having to open the wall repeatedly to get anything next door.
The canvas-covered rooftop restaurant boasts unobstructed—and unrivaled—views of the Old City. If the modern décor isn’t for you, grab a drink or dinner on the roof, where the view is spectacular, and more memorable than the rooms below. Another highlight of the hotel is its modern gym facility, which boasts a separate spinning room. The hotel also offers complimentary wine tastings every Friday.
Who Should Stay
If you’ve had your fill of grand hotels like the King David, or if you are most happy in an modern, minimalist room, stay at the Mamilla.
Written by John Cantrell