When you decide to bring a crew to Israel, it is very important to choose the right hotel. We recommend the Ambassador Hotel in East Jerusalem for the following reasons: firstly, the Ambassador Hotel has a parking lot that makes the unloading of a van with equipment easier. And since the Ambassador is located in East Jerusalem in the diplomatic area, it is totally safe! The Ambassador is truly an international hotel where you can meet foreign journalists, and UN people, and an interesting mix of Israelis and Palestinians. Of course, price is an important consideration and you’ll be fortunate, if you choose to reserve rooms at the Ambassador because the prices are fair and reasonable, especially for long shoots requiring a stay of several days. You can make a deal or we can make it for you. You can be sure that you’ll get value for your money. And last, but not least: the food is delicious!
Prima Royal Hotel
3 Mendele Street
Jerusalem 92147, Israel
I find it difficult to recommend a hotel for crews who plan to stay in Jerusalem. On the one hand, there are the expensive and big hotels in Jerusalem which are usually not in the company’s budget. On the other hand, there are many cheap hotels that you will not be happy to put your crew in.
For these reasons it was refreshing to learn about the Prima Royal Hotel, a new four-star boutique hotel that is centrally located in the heart of Jerusalem in the city’s Talbieh district. Now that we have made a thorough check of the hotel, we are able to recommend this medium-size hotel because it has a nice atmosphere, the price is reasonable, and it is extremely clean. Moreover because it is a new hotel, the staff is ready to provide good service. In short, the Prima Royal Hotel is a quite place to relax after a shooting day.
Around $120 for a single occupancy per night.
American Colony Hotel
P.O. Box 19215,
This hotel is #1 in Jerusalem, but only for big budget productions.
Where East meets West. Serene, spiritual and comfortable. For over 100 years, the American Colony Hotel has been a home away from home for discerning travelers who recognize quality. The American Colony Hotel is particularly recommended for film companies with large budgets. Even if you do not sleep there, jump in to look around and have a drink in the most beautiful garden hotel in Jerusalem. Guaranteed!
Mount Zion Hotel
17 Hevron Road
Mt. Zion, Old City
I personally do not like the big hotel that has no character. Here is a hotel that is not cheap, but it is worthwhile to check their prices. It is located next to the Jerusalem’s Cinematheque movie theatre with a great view. The charming Mount Zion Hotel is located a short distance from the Old City of Jerusalem. Originally constructed in 1882, when the Turks ruled Jerusalem, the entire complex was renovated in 1986. The charm of an earlier Jerusalem still remains. The food is average, get only rooms that were renovated and with the view. The Mount Zion Hotel facilities include an outdoor pool, a health club with sauna, indoor and outdoor Jacuzzis and a Turkish hot pool.
Via Dolorosa 37
If you are shooting in the Old City, a must place to take a break is the Austrian Hospice. Situated at the 1st turnoff from the Via Dolorosa, turn in to the Austrian Hospice. It’s a beautiful building, and they have a small cafeteria and a garden. For lunch they only have coffee, beer, wines, sandwiches and soup of the day; the Austrian pastry is great! If you wish to sleep, it’s really basic: a cheap, clean room. No TV. Get the room with the balcony. The Austrian Hospice is a real unique experience – a pearl in the Old City.
Little House in Bakah
1 Yehuda Street (at the intersection with Hebron Road)
The Little House in Bakah is located in Bakah, a old neighborhood in Jerusalem. If you need to go cheap, it’s an option. The hotel is renovated and surrounded by a large garden. The 35 fully air-conditioned and e simple rooms in the Little House in Bakah are cheap and clean. A breakfast comes with the price of a room.
Accommodations in Jerusalem
If you are looking to rent an apartment while you are in Jerusalem, the company – In Jerusalem Colony Ltd. – specializes in short-term rentals to foreign residents of prestigious, fully furnished apartments. The apartments are all in a central location and the user friendly website simplifies the booking process.
Lutheran Guest House
St. Mark’s Road P.O.Box 14051, Jerusalem, Old City
Tel.: 02-626-6888, 02-628-2120
The Lutheran guest house, located in the Christian Quarter of the Old City, offers basic accommodations, with 23 rooms of various sizes. All of the rooms have en suite bathrooms, telephone, and internet connections. We recommend the guest house because it is cheap, clean, and situated in a 19th century building, it provides an authentic Old City experience. The down side is that the Old City is dark and quiet at night and the rooms are small. Spending time in the Old City can also be an intense experience, therefore you might want to consider sleeping outside to relax a bit at night. The roof of the guest house has wonderful views where you can get some great shots of the city.
Mar Maroun Guesthouse
Costs: Single – $46, Double – $62 – Bed and Breakfast
Address: 25 Maronite Convent Street
The Mar Maroun Guesthouse is one of the several charming guesthouses that the Old City has to offer. The accommodations are simple, but clean and nice. There are pluses and minuses to staying in the Old City, and if you decide not to stay there, the Mar Maroun Guesthouse is still worth visiting for its memorable roof with a great view and shots of the Old City.
1 Zamenhoff Street
Tel Aviv 64373,
In Tel Aviv there are many expensive hotels from the Hilton to the Dan and all the hotels that belong to the 5-star hotel group. If you are on a production budget and you do not want to stay in a standard cheap 3-star hotel, then this is the answer for you. In the center of Tel Aviv, the Cinema Hotel was originally constructed as a movie theatre. The building was recently restored and renovated to become a modern hotel with a beautiful original staircase, chandeliers and historical characteristic exterior. The hotel is very clean, and the service is efficient.
North of Israel
P.O.B 27 12000
Mitzpe Haymim is by far the most beautiful place to stay in the Galilee in Northern Israel. It is a brilliant diamond overlooking the small town of Rosh Pina, reflecting the good taste of its owners – just old charm mixed with the smells of Galilee flowers and pine trees. Warning: it’s an expensive place (US$250-400), however if you would like to stay in relaxing atmosphere with superb spa treatments, organic food, spectacular views and a really friendly staff, then this is the place for you.
We stayed there for the Rosh Pina TV festival that occurs once a year in November. Every year Israeli talent agents, executives, actors, directors arrive from Tel Aviv and the center of the country for three days of screening, panels and discussions about the TV business. In this sleepy old town you’ll see the major players in Israeli TV industry all discussing the future of Television.
We are adding a link to the hotel site so that it might be less expensive if you order from outside of Israel. There is a 10% off for journalists.
Nof Tavor Hotel
After a long day of shooting in the North if you are looking to stay in the area we recommend the Nof Tavor Hotel as a good option for low budget lodging. Under the auspices of the Mizrah Kibbutz, it is a clean and simple place to stay in a central area of the lower Galilee. The cost is around $60-70 a night, and in the evening we suggest you dine at the Mizrah restaurant, which serves meat and non-kosher food. We find this hotel to be a very convenient place to stay.
Vered Hagalil Guest Farm (Galilee)
Korazim Junction 12340,
Vered Hagalil Guest Farm is the kind of experience visitors to Israel usually don’t expect: an excellent hotel where cozy rustic wood and stone buildings overlook the Sea of Galilee, and a dude ranch with friendly horses and guides. Trails go South from the Vered Hagalil Guest Farm towards the Sea of Galilee. The Vered Hagalil Guest Farm restaurant serves Texas-style ranch food all day long: pancakes for breakfast, barbecued meat hamburgers, and apple pies. The food is really fun, and this restaurant is definitely on top of my list of restaurants in the north.
The Scots Hotel
St. Andrew’s Galilee
P.O.Box 104, Tiberias 14100
On the shores of the Sea of Galilee at the northern entrance to Tiberias is a 120 year-old historical complex: the Scots Hotel. Overlooking the Golan Heights and enveloped by a peaceful, mysterious tranquility, the Scots Hotel has had a long and eventful history.
In 1884, the foundations of a Church of Scotland meeting house were laid while Dr. David Watt Torrance established a small hospital to cater to the medical needs of the inhabitants of Tiberias, regardless of race or creed.
Despite the tragic loss to disease of two of his wives and four of his children, and the difficulties caused by World War 1, Dr. Torrance cared for thousands of patients until his death in 1923. His son Dr. Herbert Torrance continued this noble work until his retirement in 1953. The hospital continued as a maternity unit until it closed in the 1950’s.
Following the closure, The Church of Scotland wished to make use of these buildings and opened a guesthouse for pilgrims and visitors from across the world. In the spirit of Dr. Torrance, the Church of Scotland decided in 1999 to undertake a major refurbishment of the guesthouse and the creation of this hotel
There are 69 rooms, conference rooms provide complete audiovisual facilities and a business centre provides full working facilities and communication.
The Ceilidh bar (a Scottish pub) is a place where you can relax with your friends and enjoy a cozy atmosphere. There is live music on the weekends. Expensive 200-350$.
Villa Galilee Hotel
Hagdud Hashlishi 106
Villa Galilee is a boutique hotel on top of the Canaan Mountains, overlooking the Maron Mountains, Lake Kineret at Tiberias and the Golan Heights. The hotel is the ultimate dream of a couple who emigrated from France in the 1960’s. The couple remembered well the boutique hotels in the French countryside; at their Villa Galilee Hotel they have endeavored to recreate that atmosphere. The hotel was built over an eighty-year old stone structure, but by adding two modern levels, a unique edifice was created that combined traditional architecture with modern. The hotel’s intimate lobby invites the guests to enjoy a colorful library, soft music and light appetizers. The owners’ personal French furniture fills the hotel producing a cozy home-like ambiance. Guests can also relax in an inviting garden just outside the French doors. The hotel has twenty-one rooms, including three penthouse suites. Each suite has a large private balcony and there is shared Jacuzzi with the magnificent views of Zefat and its surroundings. Expansive: $200-350.
South of Israel
Hod Hamidbar Resort & Spa Hotel
Ein Bokek 86930 Dead Sea
tel.: 08-668 8222
Fax: 08-658 4606
As a film producer, I scout Israel again and again for great locations. Recently, I came across a small and cozy hotel at the Dead Sea, which stands out against the huge complexes of other hotels. Hotel Hod Spa Resort appealed to me because of its cleanliness and the friendly staff. You will find a wonderful private beach overlooking the mountains and a very nice Spa area to indulge in at the end of your production day. The Dead Sea is a very special place to visit in Israel and has much to offer to production teams and tourists.
Kibbutz Ein Gedi Hotel
Kibbutz Ein Gedi
M.P. Dead Sea 86980
The Kibbutz Ein Gedi Resort Hotel is a lush desert oasis on the Dead Sea, complete with Botanical Gardens & Dead Sea Spa Center. There are 121 A/C rooms with TV, radio, telephone, coffee and tea making facilities, toilet and shower. There is a spacious lobby and convention and special events center. If you stay at Kibbutz Ein Gedi Resort Hotel, you’ll be near Massada, the Ein Gedi Nature Reserve, the Dead Sea, and Qumran. There are indoor and outdoor swimming pools, tennis courts, natural sulphur pools, mineral mud baths, and a private beach on the Dead Sea. The Dead Sea, of course, is famous for its beneficial medicinal properties. There is regular shuttle service to a spa beach.