As a tour guide (and tour operator) I get sometimes strange requests. A man, who wants to have a customized Cultural tour through Israel with the best and most beautiful hotels had to offer. I customized the tour and we went! Can you imagine, that as a tour guide, I slept in those amazing hotels too? Here’s an overview of those hotels.
Prices are ranging from $239 per night till $2,955 per night! Honestly, I didn’t see much difference in the service, but the hotels above the $600 per night for a double room looked amazing.
This hotel is located in the Negev (Ezuz), relatively cheap from $150-$350 per night.
Nice hotel with a price from $320 and of course more expensive. The service is okay, but outside it looked amazing.
It’s a very expensive hotel with prices from $720 per night. And you also need loads of money, because everything additionally you need to pay for … and it’s not cheap. With all those extreme prices, at least the people working there bow, just like the hotels in China. If you give them a tip, they bow lower and if you add to the tip, their bowing becomes deeper again. One lady tried.
The inside was like a museum and the rooms were large and a museum as well. I felt like the the old Sun King of France.
And if you can believe it with those prices it’s also totally full! So many people from the government (in Israel and other countries), can you imagine what they do with our tax money. And then there was that little fat man, who dressed like a pauper, acted like a barbarian … until he took his wallet out and spread the ‘God’ message in the form of dollar bills ($100). In that time, I just finished explaining to the group the long and ancient history of Jerusalem and he gave me $100 tip! He was not part of the group. I spent it for ice creams and cakes (outside the hotel later).
Actually, the name for this hotel is Rimonim Shalom Jerusalem Hotel and the price per night is from $140. It’s a nice, normal hotel, nothing special. Except that the group discovered a shop nearby, which was selling falafels. They bought it and brought it back … no, they smuggled it back into their rooms. When we left the next day, they were so friendly to leave behind a large tip for the room cleaners.
This is a hotel with a $2,000 per night price and it’s all worth it (if you have that money). Those rooms there are not normal rooms! The hotel management calls it suites, but I call it heaven with room numbers. And the people working there are angels and the males are really bowing. Except that desk manager, he acted like the devil.
There is spa, and many other nice and expensive things. The room prices are from $171, but everything else in that hotel cost fortunes. If you don’t look out, one evening there and you spend a year salary! The outside is cool, especially in the evening after dinner.
The one in Eilat is really good. It’s grand, large, the rooms are indeed very large as well, but you need to walk a lot inside to get to the restaurants. But you pas many bars, bistros and more fun stuff. Prices are from $500-$1,200 per night. I got blisters that night, because some people couldn’t sleep well and was getting warm milk, until I discovered the bless of room service.
Being a guide is not always fun, because as guide, you have the responsibility of your group!
I fell in love with this hotel. Prices are from $500 and more of course, but it’s amazing. It’s very relaxing there.
This is a really good hotel for a bit more then $220 a night. The hotel is large (again), the rooms too, the beds are amazing (trampolines I would say), and the service is excellent and professional. Except that breakfast, but that was not their fault. I was boasting at night about my ability to make Dutch pancakes. So in the morning, they got the cook crazy enough to let me make those pancakes. At the end everyone left for the bus with a full stomach, except me. I didn’t eat, because of the work. When I finally left for the bus, I was so hungry! I ate a bag with chips, cookies and at the end three pizzas.
And no, those are not sharks!
The view of this hotel is spectacular.
Leonardo is a hotel, which has new owners and they discovered how much the hotel chain needs to be maintained. With the old owners, all furniture in the rooms were shabby, the TV’s small, the walls had spots, the doors cracked and the bathroom doors fell apart and the carpets were worn out and a bad smell. And that for the prices of $150-$400 per night!Almost every night there were rooms and even floors in the hotel flooded with water from one or more toilets!
Now it’s a bit better, except the one in Tiberias, it still looks shabby there.
I told the guests that the hotel was hunted (I was joking, but what could I say different). One girl believed me and I spent much of the night apologizing and proving that I was joking. We had a very nice time in the kitchens, the girl, the cook and I. And of course we spent our time tasting Chinese cuisine.
Thank god they renovated this hotel. The prices per night are from $200, but the service is worth maybe $5! Many of those people working there don’t speak English or you can’t understand them, except one man who worked there behind the desk. He spoke like John Wayne, and his friend spoke like Donald Trump. The last one looked like him too, including his hair. There were people who were able to speak English though, but they worked in the laundry and house holding service.
The problem with those large hotel chains is the personnel. They focus on the numbers; pay as cheap as possible for their personnel and hire as less as possible.
This ‘little’ hotel is ‘not so’ expensive, only more then $2,150 per night! At least you get a breakfast ‘for free’. The hotel looks great, from the inside and the outside as well, but the service was worth maybe $1. It’s a perfect example of loads of glitter, but no class. And can you image, this hotel is constantly full. Maybe it’s part of a large hotel chain.
This hotel is my favorite. You pay like a CEO ($770 per night), but you live like a king (or queen). It’s a living museum, with indeed some Israeli glitter, but with class. The people working there don’t bow, and they don’t need to … they are professional, quick and always focused on our satisfaction to the extreme. And the room service there is a show by itself. Excellent hotel.
We had one guest with us who was 2.20 m. tall and he hit his head right here.
The one who made this all come true here is an older woman. Amazing! She paid for the tour with her family and friends, who wanted to see the real life in Israel, but she refused to sleep in a “ordinary’ hotel, she stated.
This is another hotel from the Isrotel chain in Eilat, this time with ‘cheap’ prices of $220 per night. It’s a family hotel for the middle class in Israel and when you are unlucky to have rooms near those families, prepare yourself not to sleep.
The funny thing was that the time we went to sleep at this hotel, there were several Israeli families on our floor and one Dutch family. The children from the Dutch family were looking shocked at the wild behavior of the Israeli children. A hour later they were screaming like the hotel was on fire (which actually was true in a way, they lit a fire in the stairway).
This is a nice, new hotel and everything looks still new. There is a spot though, which is caused by a few members of my group and I know that they can’t clean it anymore. I think they might cover it up in a way with a carpet on the walls, or maybe a painting.
If you go to the market in the city, never allow teenagers with the second hand stalls with spray paint, or you regret it in the evening or early morning.
It’s a business hotel with prices from $280 a night (and up) with a breakfast. It’s an okay hotel and the people speak English (even the dishwashers) and that’s always good, not? Behind and below the hotel is a mess and the smell is terrible because of the garbage and neglect. The elevator is not working well, but at the end we came to the 7th floor, where our rooms were. In the morning, some of us had pain in the back, because of that air conditioning, which nobody could switch off. Not me, because I spend the night hunting for people who could help us. They fixed it at 4 am. I was so tired, that I could not sleep, so I slept in the bus for 20 minutes.
This amazing hotel, looking like a castle from the inside, cost ‘only’ $500 per night (and of course more), but it’s worth it. The inside of the hotel is even more cool with many niches and strange corners. The rooms are not too large, just as the group liked it.
This is my favorite hotel in Eilat and not as expensive as you would expect it to be. The price is from $325 per night, and it’s absolute worth it, every penny.
This is the pool I fell into after the group wanted to make a photo of their guide. They kept on saying “… one step back, Wim. Yeah, that’s right, another small step …” until suddenly I didn’t feel anything under my feet and fell in the swimming pool. The photos they produced of my face when I was falling into the water with waving, wielding arms was hilarious for the people for many days in the tour.
I had my little revenge next day when we went out to visit the Red Canyon! At the end of the canyon we needed to go back to the bus, but because of all that water still in my head, I ‘forgot’.
Oh … before I forget. Do you know how much an ice cream cost in the middle of the desert? I tested it out with an icebox I smuggled in the bus.
The architect must have been drunk or stoned, but you get dizzy when you really look at this building. Anyway, the price is steep with their $720 per night. It’s a nice building in and outside I guess. I lost three times my way and I tried to enter two times the wrong room. I told the group that it was by design of course. I can’t allow them to think that the guide lost his way, can I?
The problem was at breakfast the next morning, when a charming 70 year old lady told me that I could come into her room if I wanted. And the group was still laughing at me till the end of that day after heavy touring.
The Dan hotel in Jerusalem is an amazing building, a very large hotel and the prices are from $240 per night. Their breakfast is amazing and we (the group and I) kept on eating! It might have to do with Timba jeep tour the day before.
The Dan hotel in Eilat is run by a twin of the one in Jerusalem. The building was different, but the service the same. The people also looked like each other in Eilat and Jerusalem. Maybe they followed us? Or maybe they have twins there?
Prices are from $300 per night, but sometimes there are days you can get the same room for $96! What can I say, it’s a family hotel and that means not sleeping at night because of still running around little kids, who also like to barge in your room if you don’t lock it. And they also love to try their English on you.
This is not really a hotel, it’s more like a hostel. The prices are from $1045 per night and they might think it’s the same price as a hostel. The people are strange and quiet and it’s located next to the crater Mitzpe Ramon. There was one person working there at night, who got the nickname ‘Tarzan’ from the group. Maybe it has something to do with the clothing he wore, or his obsession with pushups. No idea. Some ladies had half of the night need for something to drink or a snack or a friendly talk with Tarzan.
This is a hotel with class. Many fancy and expensive hotels in Israel try to impress with fancy buildings and architecture and loads of glitter, but this hotel doesn’t need to do that. It breathes class and not even so expensive compared with the rest. They ask $370 per night and of course more, depends on what you want.
This hotel is for serious people and not a group I had that time, who had too much fun, and thank God not because of me, for the change.
At the end of the tour, and I created multiple ones, because there were more people interested in those tours, I must say that I was the most impressed by the way how the personnel was working in the hotel, not how it looks like, or how fancy everything was.