Jerusalem’s historic King David Hotel is being called one of the top 12 “iconic hotels” and one of the world’s best 100 by Fodor’s.
Fodor’s is one of the world’s foremost publishers of English-language tour and travel guide books.
This is Fodor’s first Top 100 Hotel Awards, which placed the hotels in one of eight categories: New and Noteworthy, Grande Dame, Casual Chic, Design, Local Flavor, Clubby Atmosphere, Luxurious Retreat, and Trusted Brand.
Israel was listed in the “Grande Dame” category, “legendary hotels with superlative history and service.”
“The grande dame of Israeli luxury hotels opened in 1931 and has successfully (and self-importantly) defended its title ever since,” Fodor’s said. “There are other luxury hotels in Jerusalem, but none possess the historical significance and elegant surroundings of the landmarked King David. From the dignified lobby filled with travel guide-toting visitors and diplomats making notes for their next meeting, one can feel the energy of the momentous events that have taken place here. Sit on the flower-filled terrace overlooking the city’s loveliest pool and sip a glass of mint tea while gazing at the stately walls of Jerusalem’s Old City… And when you’re eating the famously excellent breakfast, don’t be surprised if you bump into royalty, world leaders, or rock stars.”
The King David hotel was built with the funding of Egyptian Jews in 1931, and was famously attacked by the Jewish liberation fighters of the Irgun in the summer of 1946, when the King David was used by the occupying British as an administrative and military headquarters. Famous guests at the King David include King George V, former US Presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Richard Nixon, British Prime Ministers Winston Churchill and Margaret Thatcher, and celebrities Richard Gere, Elizabeth Taylor, and Madonna, as well as then-presidential candidate Barack Obama. It features 233 rooms, 42 luxury suites, a presidential suite and a royal suite.
Other “Grande Dame” hotels awarded by Fodor’s are Baur au Lac Zurich, Switzerland; Breakers Palm Beach, Florida; Carlyle, New York City; Hotel de Russie, Rome; Hay-Adams Washington, DC; Villa D’Este, Lake Como; La Mamounia, Marrakesh; and The Savoy London, England.