The Efendi Hotel
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A Stunning Modern-Ottoman Boutique Hotel, Tucked Into an Alleyway in Old Acre
The loveliest moment of my trip to Israel was here, on the rooftop at sunset, watching the swallows dart through the air as the evening call to prayer rose up from a nearby mosque. This says quite a bit, given how spectacular the surroundings are in the 12-room hotel itself. The Efendi is a painstaking restoration of two Ottoman mansions, its ceilings hand-painted and its rooms sparely but beautifully furnished with reclaimed wood tables and inlaid mother-of-pearl chairs from Syria. There’s a small hammam, and a Crusader-era cellar where you can sample regional wines and cheeses. Keep an eye out for the engaging owner, Uri Jeremias, and his spectacular white beard. A local legend, he spends much of his time between the hotel and his nearby restaurant, Uri Buri.
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