As the country’s most populated and largest city, Jerusalem presents a patchwork of ethnic and religious diversity. A city that is sacred to three of the world’s great religions, different parts of Jerusalem tell completely differing stories that together help to weave the narrative of the place. For spirituality and history, few cities in the world resonate with cultured travellers in the same way as Jerusalem, and even a week spent in the Israeli capital may not be long enough to sufficiently scratch below the surface of its often-unfathomable complexity. Yet the most contested city on earth is also one of the world’s most beautiful. The scope of its history is staggering, and its vital place in the traditions of all three monotheistic faiths has led to it being fought over continually through the centuries. Jerusalem is both the heart of the Holy Land and one of the most sacred sites in the world, and a tourist hotspot brimming with sights to be seen. So, it is essential that you chose the right base from which to explore this cultural melting pot.
Israeli hotel chain Isrotel’s recently opened Orient is located in Jerusalem’s lively, upscale German Colony, a five-minute taxi ride to the edge of the Old City district, within whose compact lanes most of the top tourist attractions are located. Once inhabited by the German Templar Society in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and formerly serving as a school for their community, the historic property was lovingly restored by architect Eyal Ziv, to create a contemporary hotel which pays homage to the city’s past, through a material palette that includes stone, wood, tile and glass.
Accessible via a glass pavilion, the lobby is clad with an opulent, tapestry-lined ceiling. An elegant, earth-toned colour palette infuses the 243 rooms and suites, juxtaposing fabric detailing including burnt sienna and azure. In a nod to the bathhouses of yesteryear, intricate tiling and metallic finishes line the bathrooms.
Soak in stunning views of the Old City from the rooftop infinity pool and decide which historic sites to visit the next day while sipping on a hand-crafted cocktail. The Orient is both a haven from the bustle of Jerusalem, and a path directly into this most historic and religious of the world’s capitals.