Haifa municipality’s recent shift in priorities has placed a premium on developing the city’s tourism infrastructure. As a result, many are saying that Haifa is in the midst of a hospitality renaissance.
Haifa is currently experiencing nothing short of a tourism renaissance and is seeing several new hotel projects either having recently been completed or in advanced stages of breaking ground. This is happening on the wings of the municipality’s ambitious Waterfront plans which will open the new Haifa port and is expected to bring an unprecedented boom to the city both in terms of tourism as well as employment, leisure and construction.
The recent Waterfront conference, held in the city earlier this year, managed to attract over 1000 of the country’s top architects as well as many recognized international stars such as Daniel Libeskind (Ground Zero), Gregg Pasquarelli, who planned the New York wharf and promenade and Martha Schwartz, who conceived the artificial islands off of Dubai. They all marveled and raved at the city’s opportunity to capitalize on its potential with the opening of the new port. As mayor Yona Yahav is fond of saying “the only thing required to bring the city to the waterfront is a cutter.” These plans have no doubt been an impetus to the rush of investors the city has experienced over the past few years.
The municipality’s recent shift in priorities has placed a premium on developing the tourism infrastructure. This has also coincided with the spectacular re-generation of the German Colony and its transformation into a focal point for tourists with its fine dining and leisure options. It’s no surprise then that 3 of the 4 new hotels are located either in the German Colony or in its immediate vicinity.
If you enter the city from the south, you will come across the Garden Hotel, enveloped by landscaped gardens at the heart of Haifa’s hi-tech district and minutes away from the southern beaches of the city. The Garden as it is called was the first to identify the need to cater to the significant flow of business travelers that regularly visit such high-tech companies as Google, Elbit , Apple, Yahoo and Microsoft, to name but a few of the inhabitants of the hi-tech park.
The sleek and modern hotel offers 29 rooms and is a minute away from the city’s major shopping centers and conference halls. While only a few minutes from both the Hof HaCarmel train station and the beach, for those who plan on staying indoors the Garden offers both an indoor and outdoor pool.
In the heart of the city’s historic downtown Hadar neighborhood (and right across the street from where we sit here at the Foreign Affairs Department) is the elegant Bay Club Hotel, which was opened, in late 2013. Shaded by pine trees, and situated midway between Haifa Bay and the peak of Mount Carmel. The hotel offers 55 spacious rooms, some of them overlooking the magnificent bay view, some indulging duplexes and still others with generous lounges.
Housed in a historic building, the hotel was designed and built in the spirit of the famous resort towns of the Mediterranean, such as San Remo, Cannes, and Monte Carlo. The Hotel’s impressive design is visible as soon as you walk into the lobby with its uniquely styled open spaces and old-world luxury.
In the heart of the German Colony lies The Colony Hotel Haifa in a beautifully restored historic 103-year-old building. The hotel is located only a short walk from the famous site Bahá’í Gardens (which in July 2008 were inscribed as one of the World Heritage Cultural sites by UNESCO) The hotel is situated on Ben Gurion Blvd, the main thoroughfare of the Colony which is lined with many cafes, restaurants and a cozy shopping mall.
The building, which was completely renovated to maintain its design heritage, offers 40 luxurious rooms and mini-suites at the highest standard. The rooms boast state of the art furnishings and accessories. Noteworthy are the peaceful garden and the sun roof with a panoramic view of Mount Carmel.
At the bottom of Ben Gurion Street, the Nitzba Company has finally broken ground and is planning on completing the city’s most ambitious hotel to date. The Moshava Hotel is set to open in late 2015 and will offer a world-class facility with over 300 rooms. The hotel was designed by the architect duo of Amir Mann and Ami Shenar and while details are still not completely known, the excitement is high.