Home Page > Article
It’s a bold statement but someone has to make it – Tel Aviv is the destination of the year. Attracting travelers of all types – trendsetting millennials, digital nomads, seasoned travelers and even first-time adventurers – Tel Aviv is one of those places that has its own unique thing going on, yet in a totally familiar I belong here kind of way. That’s when you know a city is special. And while there are many, many reasons why Tel Aviv is the place to be right now, these three things deserve an honorable mention.
Five-star boutique hotels are popping up left and right.
Right now, if you ask anyone in Tel Aviv, they’ll tell you that the Norman, a chic 1920′s-inspired boutique hotel right off of Rothschild Boulevard, is without an undisputed doubt the hottest hotel in the city at the moment. With only 50 rooms between the hotel’s two Bauhaus buildings, which are connected by the cutest citrus garden in the city might I add, the exclusivity of the hotel is just a part of what makes it so special. From the rooftop pool to the beautiful Norman Restaurant, this isn’t only where the elite stay, it’s where the elite come to play. But the Norman isn’t the only first-class boutique hotel that’s turning heads in Tel Aviv, the Hotel Montefiore and Alma Hotel are just as elegant and luxurious. Add in the Brown Urban Hotel which is quickly becoming a hotspot for locals thanks to their mix of art and fashion events, and you have a mix of boutique hotels turned local hideaways that give an authentic taste of Tel Aviv that you wouldn’t normally expect to find quite so quickly as an outsider. And with newcomers like the Poli House expected to open at the end of June, Tel Aviv might be one of the only cities in the world where it’s completely acceptable to never leave your hotel every time you visit.
Tel Aviv’s food scene isn’t doing any crazy molecular gastronomy, but the simple straight forward food that they are doing? It’s absolutely incredible.
While you won’t find foams and spherified foods here, which is actually a much welcomed break from a trend that has taken over too much in recent years, what you will find is some of the most straight forward, perfectly executed food in the world. There’s a reason that they’ve been able to do this food for years without complaint or the need to reinvent the cuisine – it’s absolutely perfect just the way that it is. From the creamiest hummus that you’ll ever find – which locals swear is at Abu Hassan in Jaffa (seriously, it will ruin what you thought hummus was) – to the freshest fish and vegetables that speak for themselves, the food scene in Tel Aviv is vibrant and fresh without even having to try. And the places that you really want to seek out are the staples that locals love, from Ha’achim to Port Said to Yom Tov Delicatessen at Levinsky Market (who will also be opening a dedicated sandwich shop any day now in the same area), and you can’t forget Shmuel at Carmel Market. While you can still find five-star world-inspired cuisine at places like Catit (Mediterranean/French), why would you want to when you’re in a place with a local cuisine that’s this perfect?
Neve Tzedek is the city’s version of SoHo, but better.
Modern and chic, Neve Tzedek is one of the oldest districts in town and was also the first Jewish neighborhood built outside of Jaffa’s Old City. While the area itself is old, the vibe is young, making this part of town particularly attractive for shopping, eating and just mingling with stylish locals. Kind of like the good-old-days in New York City’s SoHo, before the chains and crowds of tourists came flocking in. Especially Shabazi Street, the main hub for the boutiques, galleries, cafes and restaurants that the area is known for among hip locals. And while the area is popular, it’s not overwhelming (remember what I just said about the tourists flocking to SoHo?). To make the best use of your time on Shabazi Street, head straight to Agas and Tamar Jewelry for a little piece to remember the city by, grab a gelato at the local favorite Anita to cool off, a bite at Suzanna (always opt to eat on the tucked away terrace) and finally end the day with wine at Zazo Wine Bar. While there’s a lot to experience in Neve Tzedek, do it all at your own pace, Tel Aviv is best enjoyed at leisure.