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By Myrna Katz Frommer and Harvey Frommer
It seems like it has always been there. And in many ways this is a statement closer to the truth than one might imagine.
Construction work was launched on September 13, 1962. Three years later the massive edifice was open for business.
There are those who say the Hilton Tel Aviv is the finest hotel in the city. It is definitely one of the largest in all of Israel. Created by architect James Rechter, in the style of late modernism, situated on a cliff, located in the heart of Independence Park in hamlet Tzafon Jashan, the Hilton Tel Aviv was the biggest and most modern hotel when it opened on 13 September 1965.
Since that opening day more than 10 million guests have enjoyed the offerings of the Hilton, a hotel that owns bragging rights to hosting more return guests than any other property in Israel. Some of these returning guests are in residence as often as three times a year. The Hilton Tel Aviv has more business people revisiting than any other hotel in Israel. At last count more than 10,000 of them were arriving annually from all over the globe, using the facilities of the hotel’s Business Center.
As one of them who returns to the hotel on a regular basis remarked: “The incredible variety of experiences offered by the Hilton Tel Aviv makes it the first logical choice of guests for their home away from home.”
When people talk about great hotels, part of the conversation always gets around to “location, location.” A stay at the Hilton Tel Aviv hotel is in many ways about the convenient and central area where it is situated – – in the pleasing beautiful Independence Park with direct access to the Hilton Beach and the Tel Aviv Promenade, a great place to stroll. The hotel is also just minutes from the beach, a little longer but pleasant walk to Tel Aviv shopping, restaurants, landmarks. The property is also within easy walking distance to the exotic and historic area of Jaffa.
The Hilton Tel Aviv owns bragging rights to 560 Guest rooms with elegant marble bathrooms, spectacular views and stunning sea view from the private balcony, an up-to-date and fully equipped gym, a rejuvenating Thai spa.
Food is always on most people’s minds when going to a hotel like the Hilton Tel Aviv. And there is always plenty of food on one’s plate and lots of dining options: buffet breakfast in Café Med, relaxed lunch in Yakimono Sushi Bar, dinner in the King Solomon Restaurant.
Not quite the granddaddy of Tel Aviv hotels, but a grand hotel that has been around for quite a while, the Hilton Tel Aviv has had several significant renovation projects through the decades. All rooms and suites have been completely refurbished. A new lobby with an extended lounge overlooking the Mediterranean has been put in place. The rooftop floor of the hotel boasts several renovated suites, some are named for special guests who have stayed in them like music conductor Zubin Mehta, violinist Itzhak Perlman and sculptor Yaacov Agam.
When the Hilton Tel Aviv first opened in 1965, policy at the time was to accentuate the nation where the hotel was built. Interior design team Dora Gad and Arie Noy incorporated Israel’s bright colors into their design. At the time, their distinct Israeli sense of style was what set them apart from local designers. Gad and Noy blended Israeli colors and characteristics, connecting them to biblical and archaeological themes. Lush greens of the Galilee, golden yellows of the citrus groves, violet desert hues were all part of the hotel’s color schemes and design, in its wall hangings and carpets, all of a piece.
With the stylistic changes since then, the themes and colors of the Hilton Tel Aviv have changed, too. Locality at one time was the focal point of hotel design. Nowadays it is internationality. The bright oranges and blues once so popular have stepped aside for more popular subdued colors.
But no matter the colors or changes or times, the Hilton Tel Aviv stands astride the Mediterranean as one of the most famous and legendary hotels in all of Israel.
THE 25 METER SALTWATER OUTDOOR SWIMMING POOL
Plaza suite LIVING ROOM