No matter how you spend your time in this corner of Israel – sprawled out on the honey-coloured beaches or exploring the copper-mining history of the neighbouring Negev – you’ll need a characterful pad to come home to. Here are the best boutique hotels in Eilat, all bookable with Culture Trip.
There’s a reason Israelis flock to Eilat. Soft sands for sun-bathing, desert landscapes to explore and some of the finest diving in the world at the Coral Beach Nature Reserve mean that you can combine relaxation and active fun in equal measure.
Days lounging by the pool, evenings sipping cocktails at the trendy bar – when it comes to a relaxed, couple-friendly holiday, this hotel near Moriya Beach nails it. The lobby has plenty of comfy seating, so you can enjoy your morning coffee lazily over a book, while rooms have a bright and contemporary feel, with white walls and metallic pendant lights. Front-desk staff can sort pretty much anything you need, from tours to beauty treatments and car hire.
The clue is in the name: this hotel is perched close to Coral Beach Nature Reserve, a world-class diving spot in Eilat, famed for its colourful reef. But, even if you’re not a diver, you’ll find reasons to like this stay – including the large, sun-drenched pool, bountiful buffets and freshly styled rooms with crisp linens and polished floors. Water sports are on tap for active types, while free bikes can be hired to explore the area.
An opulent tower hotel, with a distinct Middle Eastern design, Herods overlooks the New Marina and the surrounding red landscapes of desert and mountains. And, with easy access to the beach, it’s also convenient if you’ve come to Eilat to work on your tan. Business guests will love the conference-style amenities and polished rooms dressed in sandy hues, while families will appreciate the dedicated children’s pool and kids’ club.
It doesn’t really get closer to Coral Beach Nature Reserve than this Royal Shangrila, set right off the dive sight. And, with a sun-drenched deck area featuring a pool and bar, it lets you appreciate the view above the sparkling waters just as much as the one beneath. The larger bedrooms, which often come with more brilliant vistas, can sleep a family of four across a loft-style space. Really want to splurge? Hire one of the two elegant villas, complete with a private pool.
Tucked into the slopes of Edom Mountains, on the shore of the popular dive site Coral Beach, Orchid Eilat comes with a Thai twist. Villas, and whole wings of the hotel, come with Southeast Asian-style wood ceilings, spinning ceiling fans and blooming orchids galore. It’s a romantic pick for holidaying couples – honeymooners in particular – who will also enjoy the elegant restaurant overlooking the shimmering Red Sea.
It’s right on the coast at HaDayagim Beach, but you don’t need the Red Sea to enjoy the waterside life at Aria. Its spectacular central pool – lined with towering palms, thatched umbrellas and comfy loungers – is a draw in itself. Guests visit for other reasons, too, though, like the Prana Spa, which comes with shoulder-unclenching massages, and the “dance bar”, which lets you socialise with a drink or two late into the evening.
Primely placed near the promenade, beaches and downtown Eilat, Astral Maris lets you take advantage of everything that this Israeli beach resort has to offer. Families are welcome here. While children spend the afternoon in the Astraland club – catching up on video games or playing on swings and slides – parents can get some R&R by snoozing by the sun-drenched pool. The Sea Bell restaurant dishes up three meals a day if you can’t be bothered to head out to feast.
Multiple pools and rambling gardens – it’s almost easy to get lost in the spacious outdoor areas of Isrotel Yam Suf, set right on the coast on Eilat’s west side. But, in terms of all the attractions, from the spa to the coral-themed bedrooms, there is one distinct highlight: the onsite Manta Isrotel Diving Center. Join some courses here, and you’ll be ready to take the plunge at Coral Beach Nature Reserve.