PROFILE

The boutique hotels hold key to future Israel visits

The Covid-19 pandemic has hit the hotel industry in Israel hard. During the September-October Jewish holidays — one of the peak times for tourists from around the world, as well as local Israelis taking vacations — Israel was under its second lockdown and all hotels were closed.

Over the summer, which is another peak tourism time, hotels were able to open to Israeli tourists.

Israelis like to feel they are getting good value, and the hotels that did open had to cut prices or throw in extras like meals and entry to tourist attractions.

August was a good month and many hotels thought they would be able to recoup the year’s profits — until a second lockdown was imposed.

Two key tourist areas, the Dead Sea and Eilat, are expected to open to Israeli tourists soon, dependent on negative coronavirus tests. But dozens of Israeli hotels are shuttered — and an estimated 25 per cent of all hotels may not reopen.

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