Review of "Crowne Plaza Hotel Tel Aviv"

published 27/07/2005 | lazza123
Member since : 03/12/2002
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Pro Location, Locatin, Location!
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"A Crowne in the Jewel that is Tel Aviv"

I had to attend a conference in Tel Aviv, Israel. The conference was in the Crowne Plaza Hotel, so it made sense to stay there!

In Israel the currency is the New Israeli Shekel, which in this review will be called NIS. When I changed my money at Heathrow, the exchange rate was 7.79 NIS to the £. Some of the cost was in US $ so the exchange rate that was on my credit card statement was $1.81 to the £

*** Before I got there ***

I booked my stay on line at the Intercontinental hotels web site, check the web site for the latest deals

I didn't know how to get from Tel Aviv airport, to the hotel, so while still in the UK I sent the hotel an email asking if there was a courtesy bus. They promptly responded, telling that there wasn't, but the ways to get to the hotel were either by train, bus (number 222) or taxi. In fact the information they gave me was very detailed. So prompted with this information I knew what to do!!

*** Arrival ***

On landing, I followed the excellent guide on Tel Aviv airport written by TheChocolateLady, it certainly helped me!! (..and I would recommend it to anyone flying into Tel Aviv Ben Gurion airport)
I went for the train option (as I thought it might be fun!). It cost 12 NIS the journey was 3 stops. From there I had to get a taxi which cost 20 NIS (It cost 120 NIS taxi from the airport directly to the hotel)

*** Check in ***

When you get to the hotel, the first thing you notice is the armed guard on the door, checking everyone going in (you just have to remember the situation out in the Middle East!) The concierge rushed out to help me with my case, and I must admit the guard, the concierge and the taxi driver were extremely polite.

The first thing I noticed in the foyer was a sign saying "It is illegal to carry weapons in this hotel" (just as well I left mine at home then  )

The check in was really friendly and quick, they took a copy of my passport, swiped my credit card, and that was about it. One thing that was amiss was the fact that the person checking me in only gave a cursory glance at my Priority Club card (more on this later).

I was given my keycard for the room, pointed to the lift, so off I went. The concierge offered to help me with my bags, but I actually prefer to do my own thing.

*** The hotel ***

Ok so lets have a tour of the hotel then.

The hotel has 19 floors, 17 of them above ground, the other 2 below ground, although it is a bit false, as all the public areas have wonderful sea views.
The hotel has 247 rooms

The entrance area is all marble, and it certainly looks very nice. You enter the hotel via a revolving glass door, which at certain times is blocked off, and you have to use a door to one side of it!

Getting into the hotel, to the right is a large reception, with a lovely wooden counter. There were always at least two people working there whenever I went by.
To the left is a small bar area Café D'or, this sells coffees, beers and so on. I generally went here to have a beer most nights, a local beer Maccabi cost 15 NIS.

Beyond the lift lobby, is a mezzanine level, which has chairs overlooking the beach from a massive plate glass window. (If you are in Tel Aviv, it is worth coming in for a coffee just to look at the view!)

Just before the Mezanine to the left are some stairs, leading down to the lower levels (you can of course take the lift!) At the 1st level is the main restaurant, this is where breakfast is also served. This too has a massive plate glass window, so you can sit having your meal gazing out to sea, watching the bronzed and thonged enjoying themselves!!
This level also leads you to the leisure area. There is a small shop here, which has all the things you didn't realise you needed!
Also at this level are the meeting rooms, they can be totally configured to however you need (I spent most of my time in these rooms)

The next level down has another group of meeting rooms, and a very large conference room (we had nearly 200 in this room)

There is another restaurant here The Pacific Bistro and Sushi (I never ate in here)

There is also a "Club Room" for members of the Priority Club, this is situated on the 9th floor, where you can get food and drink.

Communication wise, the hotel is fully fitted out with wireless, as I have wireless on my laptop, I just needed to buy an id card to give me access to the wireless network. The cards are 30 mins, 60 mins or 24 hours (a 60 minute card cost $4 US)

*** My boudoir! ***

So I had a room on the 17th floor - one of the best in the house apparently!
Entering the room, was straight forward, swipe the card in the lock and open the door.
The room was really welcoming, just inside the door to the left was the bathroom, which was quite large.
There was also a trouser press, which I always find useful to have.

In the main body of the room, was a massive bed! I stay in quite a lot of these types of hotels, and every one I go to the bed seems to get bigger and bigger!! It would fit four very comfortably!! (No I didn't try!)

On the right side of the bed were controls for the air conditioning, and a radio alarm. The Air conditioning was really efficient, and soon got the room temperature down.

Opposite the bed was a big wardrobe kind of thing, which contained the TV, and a tea/coffee making station (which was very well stocked). This was a strange piece of furniture, as it was quite low, and there was an overhang above the tea station (I hit my head on it on a couple of occasions.) This unit also had the mini bar, and a few storage drawers.

Just along from this was the wardrobe proper, which was recessed into the wall. This provided plenty of hanging space, 4 shelves and 3 drawers. It also contained a blanket!!! And an ironing board and iron.

Next to this was a desk, which was useful for working on, a nice size, not too big.

In the room also was a sofa and coffee table. The sofa was very comfortable.

On the wall opposite the door was the window, this proved to be French type windows, with a balcony. The balcony has a glass surround and was fitted with 2 white plastic chairs. From the balcony, there were great views of the marina to be had (see picture)

As I mentioned earlier the hotel has wireless, so from my room I could communicate!
The TV was quite large, it had 15 channels, the main ones I watched were BBC World, Sky and CNN, there were a number of Israeli channels, which were great fun to watch, and try to work out what was being said.

The only downer were the house keepers, they seemed a bit hit and miss as to what they did, a couple of times no shampoo or soap was left, one day the floor matt wasn't left, and on one day the spray bottle for cleaning the glass was left on my sink! On one day the bed wasn't really made, it looked as if it had just been thrown together

A quick call down to reception got it sorted, but in a hotel of this quality I would not expect this to happen!

The other annoyance was that I did not get a newspaper every morning, there were free Jerusalem posts to pick up in reception though. I questioned why, and it would appear that they never had my priority club number on the system, this struck me as strange, as I booked through the hotel chain web site, and the person checking me should have registered my card, small fault, but important to me!

*** Food ***

Breakfast was really the only meal that I had to pay for, as lunch was provided by the conference organisers, so breakfast was a self serve buffet. There were many choices available, fresh fruit, omelettes (cooked by a chef) various Middle Eastern specialities (which were delicious), and endless supply of tea and coffee. In fact you could have so much for breakfast that you really wouldn't need to eat for the rest of the day. The cost of breakfast worked out to be $17US. I would say that at first sight it was expensive, but I found it to be excellent value for money.

As I was on a conference, food was provided for lunch, and I must say the catering team excelled!! Each day was themed, so we had Japanese, Moroccan, Oriental, Mexican and BBQ, the food was out of this world, with so many choices of different food, Ok it is a biased view of what the hotel can do, but the catering team are the same all year, so from my experience the food you would get here will be exceptional.

*** Leisure ***

The hotel boasts a massage suite, where for a few shekels you can be pampered. There is a small gym, with a variety of machines and weights, and a reasonable sized half covered swimming pool (which considering the beach is within 50m didn't get any use from me!) There were also saunas available.

If you walk out of the hotel, turn left, walk for about 10m, go down a flight of steps, you are on the beach, I actually went for a run on the beach every morning, followed by a swim in the sea!! Sad but true!

*** Check Out ***

Unfortunately I had to leave… so bags packed off I went, check out is 12:00, but you can arrange a couple of hours extension if you need to.

Up to the desk I go, and ask for my bill. Now I always check my hotel bills, and it was just as well really, as I had been charged twice on a couple of occasions for breakfast, there were also a couple of other items on my bill which certainly were not mine!! After explaining the problems, the receptionist promptly removed the items from my account.
My other bug was that the hotel bill was presented to me in US Dollars, I really don't know why, the cynical side of me says it is to make money on the exchange rates!
The room rate I paid was $180 per night, this was a flexible rate, I could have got it much cheaper if I had booked further in advance, and got a fixed rate, check the hotel web site for details of the deals.

*** Other things ***

The concierge can arrange tours, so if you fancy a trip out to the desert, or a trip around Jerusalem, this can all be booked. The old town of Jaffa is along the coast, you can walk or take a cab, it is certainly worth doing. The centre of Tel Aviv is a short walk from the hotel, where you can find many shops and markets, all worth visiting. For a more cultural trip there are museums, art galleries and music venues. The city really has everything for everyone.

So there you have the Crowne Plaza - Tel Aviv, if you are thinking of going on holiday to Israel, then this is a perfect base. Tel Aviv is a wonderful cosmopolitan city, reflected in this hotel. You will be welcomed warmly, and really well looked after. My impression of Israel changed so much after this visit (no I didn't spend all my time in the hotel) I will certainly go back and really explore

One other thing, Saturday is a day when most shops are closed in Israel, so the hotel shop is closed, also there is a bit of a skeleton staff on, so the breakfast is not as extensive, also the room keepers seem even more lax!!

Check out the hotel,

The hotel is located at

TEL AVIV, 63453

Tel 00 972-3-5201111

Thanks for reading this and if you get to go enjoy it!!


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Comments on this review

  • a4angus published 03/03/2006
    I remember it all so well from when I was over in Israel some years ago. Good review. Angus.
  • tennisnut published 29/07/2005
    Great detailed and interesting review! I think you thought of everything! Lovely photos too. Probably not somewhere I'd think to go on my hols though . . . . . . Gill :-)
  • kam76 published 29/07/2005
    Super review! Sounds wonderful. Cheers, K.
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