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Checking In: The Jaffa Hotel, Tel Aviv

Located in the heart of Tel Aviv’s small port of Jaffa, this Luxury Collection Hotel is set within a restored 19th century French Hospital and offers a weekend break bursting with heritage.

Tel Aviv may be known for its vibrant party scene, but The Jaffa Hotel welcomes you into an oasis of calm within this bustling city. A hilltop location found in a 4000-year-old seaport, the building’s exquisite ancient architecture, arched colonnades and Jaffa orange-tree-lined outdoor corridors offer a truly opulent stay with soul.

The Vibe

The Neo-Renaissance building embarked on an extraordinary renovation project by renowned British architect John Pawson, who juxtaposed the historic building with a modern wing that seamlessly collide. In the lobby, you’ll find art from Damien Hirst and remnants of a 13th-century crusader’s bastion wall uncovered during the excavation, contrasting with mid-century furnishes from Pierre Paulin, modern Sheshbesh games tables and a well-stocked bar. Step outside to find a luscious courtyard bridging the old and new wings with outdoor seating and enveloping trees.

The Rooms

There are 120 rooms spread between the historic and the contemporary wings. Both sides are equally soothing with streamlined neutral decor, natural stone floors and minimalist furniture. The Deluxe Historic (pictured) boasts exceptionally high ceilings and a floating king-size bed. Little details have been thought about – you won’t find an obtrusive TV, but smart technology fitted within your floor-length mirror. All rooms have marble bathrooms with a sleek rainfall shower and The Jaffa’s own branded toiletries, the scent made exclusively for the hotel. Private balconies have views of Jaffa, the Mediterranean or the inner courtyard. The rooms follow the serenity of the building’s exterior so you’ll always feel a sense of calm wherever you are.

The Amenities

A seasonal outdoor pool lined with sleek sun loungers and dense greenery is a delightful addition to stays in the summer months. The spa, although perhaps not as grand as you’d expect being housed in such a magnificent building, is a favourite of the locals and the treatments themselves do the talking. Help yourself to champagne whilst waiting for your massage or relax in the sauna post-treatment. You’ll also find a large, well-equipped gym open 24 hours a day, appreciated if jet lag kicks in.

The Dining

Breakfast is served at Golda’s (named after Israel’s first female Prime Minister Golda Meir), The Jaffa’s main restaurant. There’s a buffet but with an a la carte menu, so you can fill up on everything from fresh pastries and fruit to Shakshuka and pancakes. Lunch is a casual affair, but doesn’t lack vitality. The hotel buys its hummus from Abu Hassan each morning to serve to its guests, supposedly the oldest and most famous Palestinian hummus shop that tourists flock to when visiting the capital. You’ll find classic Israeli dishes, homemade falafels, seeded bagels and fresh Mediterranean salads and in the evening, and Golda’s serves an Italian menu, which you can enjoy inside or out in the courtyard.

Things To Do

Explore Old Jaffa, just a five-minute walk from the hotel, where you’ll find charming alleys filled with art galleries and the Jaffa Flea Market selling antiques and jewellery. The area is also popular for its wine bars, creative Mediterranean dining and seafood restaurants. For fashion lovers, be sure to stop by Holon Design Museum for Alber Elbaz: The Dream Factory, an extensive exhibition dedicated to the late Israeli designer showing until 15th April 2023. The building’s architecture is worth the trip alone. Read an Insider Guide To Tel Aviv With Orit Elhanati for more recommendations.


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