PHOTO: www.facebook.com/Renaissancetelaviv

Fodor's Expert Review Renaissance Tel Aviv

121 Hayarkon St., Tel Aviv, Tel Aviv, 63453, Israel See on Map

This big, luxury beachfront hotel is a little worse for wear, but time hasn't affected the view: All the rooms and suites have spectacular sea-facing balconies. Guest rooms could use a renovation, but when light floods in through floor-to-ceiling windows, they feel open and airy. Among the restaurants is the Jaffa Terrace, which serves a selection of pasta dishes, and the Sabres Brasserie, with both a buffet and an à la carte menu. The hotel has direct access to the beach, and has one of the few indoor, heated swimming pools in Tel Aviv.

room

Generic but comfortable, the five categories of rooms all feature an unremarkable palette of beige, with a comfortable bed and a good amount of space. Keep those curtains open, though -- the lack of color inside the room is compensated for by beautiful seafront rooms.

For a fresher and brighter experience, book a room on the seventh floor, where the rooms were recently renovated and look a lot shinier.

bathroom

Spacious and bright, the bathrooms are standard and feature nice amenities like complimentary toiletries, hairdryers and robes.

YOU SHOULD KNOW Cleanliness in the rooms is spotty, at best, and some linens and towels show as much signs of wear as the carpets. This hotel begs for a renovation.

lobby

Done up in colors of sea and sand, the lobby pays homage to the glistening Mediterranean just outside its windows. The furnishings are a bit dated, but clean, sleek and welcoming.

Several nights a week, there's live piano and special wine deals in the lobby, so ask at reception for a schedule.

pool

So many Tel Aviv hotels feature sparkling outdoor pools that shut down as soon as the weather turns crisp, leaving many a visitor heartbroken from November to March. Not so at the Renaissance, where the indoor heated pool is open year-round, regardless of weather.

spa

Small with no extra frills, the spa nevertheless offers a complete menu of treatments including aromatherapy and reflexology, with the option to book treatments from between 30 minutes to 80 minutes long.

gym

All the standard fitness equipment with a spectacular waterfront view.

YOU SHOULD KNOW The gym closes relatively early (8:30 p.m. on weeknights, 6 p.m. on Friday and 5 p.m. on Sunday), and it's not open at all on Sundays. Plan your workouts accordingly.

dining

The vegetarian Jaffa Terrace serves a dairy menu of light sandwiches, salads and soups and is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner while the slightly more upscale Sabres restaurant offers buffets of heavier fare for lunch and dinner only.

drinking

The hotel's Sports Bar has beer on tap and all the major sporting games on screen.

LOCATION

Getting Around

The long, flat Tel Aviv boardwalk is directly at your doorstep at the Renaissance, so take advantage by walking, jogging or biking it. If you want to head into Tel Aviv, it's easy to head on foot right up Gordon Street; for buses and taxis, Ben Yehuda Street is a five-minute walk and offers everything you'd need in terms of public transport.

Restaurants

For fresher than fresh seafood served amid the glitterati of Tel Aviv, book a seat at the bar at Shila (12-minute walk); for Provence-inspired romance served with Mediterranean flair, you can't go wrong a charming Dallal (10-minute drive).

Bars

Whiskey and cigars are the top flight options of choice at the handsome Hola (8-minute walk); for cocktails that are wildly creative and atmosphere to match, check out Spicehaus (10-minute walk).

WHY WE LIKE IT

Sometimes you don't want a hotel packed with flash and flair, you just want a great location with all the amenities at your fingertips. The Renaissance doesn't do much to stand out from the crowded beachfront pack, but in some ways, that's part of its appeal.

QUICK FACTS

342 rooms, 4 suites
Breakfast yes
Lunch yes
Dinner yes
Bar yes
Cafe yes
Room Service yes
$$$
Gym, Pool
yes
Parking Lot
No

HOTEL INFO

Phones: 03-521–5555

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