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“Live like a Pasha!”

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The American Colony Hotel
Ranked #12 of 101 Hotels in Jerusalem
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed November 23, 2012

For the location in East Jerusalem and proximity to the Old City, the American Colony Hotel can't be beat. While others may talk about other 5 star hotels on the West side of Jerusalem, why is it that those hotel guests are at the American Colony having drinks at the lounge? Needless to say, for a different view of Jerusalem, I'd wholeheartedly pick this hotel every time. I felt safe in this neighborhood, and I actually like the charm found here that is sometimes lost in some of the newer more "sanitized" developments elsewhere.

I recently enjoyed a 2 night stay at the hotel, in room 114. Room 114, located right by the elevator, was apparently the living quarters of the Pasha's Fourth Wife. As you go up the stairs to the room (there are stairs to the entrance - for those that have special needs), you enter a small living/work area, complete with desk and chair, as well as comfortable sitting chair and table. There's a nespresso machine with a myriad of choices and seemingly endless supply, as well as thoughtful choices of teas and tea caddy. Here you will also find the first door to a balcony overlooking the inside courtyard. As you venture further in the room, you'll see two chairs and another larger copper table, a king sized bed, dresser and chair, and two balcony doors. This room has two balconies - two doors to the inside courtyard, and also a private courtyard to the front of the hotel. Note, there is a step to go up to the private courtyard. You also have a closet that looks like an impenetrable fortress of very solid doors. Plenty of storage in the closet, as well as the dressers, for those planning a longer stay.

The bathroom is off of the living/work area, with toilet, bidet, and nicely apportioned tub/shower. I'm a big guy at 5'10" and nearly 300#, and I fit into the tub with no problems. The amenities provided were the -417 Dead Sea Salt products, including shower gel, shampoo, and soap. The towels were soft and large enough for me plus some. One complaint about the robe was that it looked a little worse for wear, and did not fit. However, most hotel robes don't. The water pressure was plentiful, as was the hot water.

The bed was extremely comfortable, as was the bedding. I left the balcony doors open at night for some fresh air, and always felt cozy and comfortable. Carpets were a nice touch for the gorgeous marble floors that were a little cold in the morning first thing. One note, leaving the doors open means you'll also hear the Muzzein calling to prayer at the nearby mosque. If you take it like I do as part of the local charm, it won't bother you. In fact, while I heard the first prayer, I slept through the second prayer call.

Wifi was plentiful throughout the hotel, although a bit slow at times when there were many people in the lobby/lounge area. Every one I encountered working at the hotel was friendly and courteous and was always willing to help. Questions regarding directions, taxis, and shopping were met with helpful smiles and assistance.

Breakfast was an experience out of this world. I've stayed at hotels that don't provide a spread like this hotel does, and charge for it. Here, breakfast is included, and is a must do. A great spread of salads, cheeses, hummus, fruit, vegetables, olives, yogurt, and the list goes on. Some of my favorites were the spinach bourekas, falafel, labaneh, hummus, tabbouleh, oriental salad, and pita with za'atar. For the less adventurous, there's also made to order eggs, and your standard "continental" items (toast, croissants, pastries, etc). There is also tea and coffee (try the arabic coffee!!), as well as carrot (must try!), orange, and lemon (lemonade) juice. Chilled bottles of Evian are also provided. If you leave here hungry, you've done something wrong.

I did not swim (pool was closed), but it looked absolutely amazing, with plenty of space around to sit down and lounge. There are locker rooms for men and women by the pool, with bathroom, shower, and locker facilities as needed. A Sauna is also available, but this is mixed company - there is no separate sauna for men/women.

I can't recommend this hotel enough, and I can't wait to go back. Next time, for a much longer period of time.

Room Tip: Rooms in the Main Building are close to breakfast and the lobby lounge.
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled solo
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Thank Stephen P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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619 - 625 of 1,080 reviews

Reviewed November 20, 2012

This hotel is very interesting as it was formerly a palace. The grounds are spectacular. There are older olive trees interspersed around the gardens and such. You can take a stroll, meditate, or meet with friends and you won't be disappointed. The rooms were very interesting. We stayed in a large mini-suite on the first floor. It was overlooking the pool. We were awakened by the early morning Azan or call to prayer. The ambiance was irreplaceable. Could I make changes to the hotel? Yes, but the experience was very worth it. Besides, how often can you say you've stayed in a palace before? Anyway, life is about creating memories and you will definitely walk away with some fond ones by staying here!

I brought my family (two young girls). They were in awe and loved the gardens. The breakfast was a Mediterranean style buffet and it was quite delicious.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank E B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 17, 2012

The public areas and gardens are lovely, but the rooms and amenities are disappointing. Beds and bedding need to be upgraded/updated. The sheets were thin, and the mattress cover did not cover the entire mattress. The plumbing in the bathrooms also needs to be upgraded -- old water faucets that never could quite mix the hot and cold properly, and there was a problem with hot water late in the day so if you wanted to take a shower after a long day of sightseeing and before dinner, you couldn't really do it. Service was fine, and the food was good (OK breakfast, and had one dinner, which was good). I probably wouldn't stay here again.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled solo
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2  Thank PAlaw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 14, 2012

I think this place gets a bit of a "bye" because it is in East Jerusalem and everyone wants to be "fair." The hotel is certainly not bad but it is not exactly in the 5 star category, except that on the east side of the city it is the best available. Certainly no match for the 5 star hotels in the western part of the city. I had apartment #6 which is the presidential suite; has a nice balcony and it is a nice room but beware of the various steps near the doors; don't stay in this room if you are afraid of falling. The soaps in my bathroom cracked in half right out of the box; I didn't see any shoeshine service available; there was no evening turndown; the clock next to the bed was an hour ahead even though they had changed to winter time a month ago, and I felt a little like that you come here and "rough it" a little bit and say that you were here and you're not supposed to expect that it is that good. Service was pretty friendly, the gym and pool were fine, the spa service was very good; and breakfast was fine. I really liked the gardens with the smell of the spices. In this neighborhood, I don't think people tend to walk off the hotel grounds and around in the eastern part of the city, certainly not at night. Even after 45 years from 1967, it still feels like a "pending" area -- feels like walking around the Turkish part of Nicosia in Cyprus. This is definitely a historical property and it is interesting walking around the hotel late at night looking at all the memorabilia. Definitely come once for a night, but I couldn't see myself doing more than that at this property. I want to be somewhere where I can step out and walk around more and if it is a Leading Hotels hotel then it should deliver excellence on all fronts.

Stayed: November 2012, traveled solo
2  Thank 649ic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 13, 2012

A peaceful escape… an amazing hotel, different of all new minimal design boutique hotels.Service was great, the room was very comfortable and pampering. The restaurant was excellent for intimate dinner and also for a great breakfast. The place is very well located too. No doubt I will return !

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Ronnen F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 5, 2012

We wanted to stay close to the old town but not in a chain: this hotel was for me the perfect choice. We received an upgrade to a deluxe pasha in the main house: although I didn't look around much of the rest of the hotel but I suspect this is one of the best parts of the hotel. Breakfast and dinner in the inner courtyard was very pleasant and the food good (the courtyard is popular for dinner so make a reservation). The reception staff remembered my name throughout the stay - a nice touch. My only complaint was the slightly grubby sunbeds by the pool.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank LondonKiwiflyer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 5, 2012

Visited for two nights on business. Check-in was about the most efficient I have ever experienced: four of us checked in simultaneously by one staffer in less than 3 minutes, complete with overview of the hotel. And we got champagne. I was in a newly renovated room in the Palm House. Unfortunately, the new electronic key (sad to see the old brass keys gone with the wind) didn't work. I went back to have it rekeyed. Still didn't work. The new electronic lock was broken and couldn't be repaired until the next day. So I had to have a staffer let me into my room each time I went out for the first 24 hours. The room, however, was stunning and spacious, with views on two sides. New flatscreen TV was a big plus. The bathtub is a bit precarious to exit, but this is not uncommon in this part of the world. My biggest gripe was the way-to-small and ill equipped gym, but that is a small gripe in the big picture. The breakfast was sumptious as was the Saturday brunch. Service throughout was 5-star. Just keep you eye out for renovation hick-ups.

Room Tip: Renovations of Palm House are still not complete so beware. They are wonderful rooms if everything w...
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled on business
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Thank Rebel-Yell-Chicago
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The American Colony Hotel

Address: 1 Louis Vincent Street, Jerusalem 9720071, Israel
Location: Israel > Jerusalem District > Jerusalem > American Colony
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Business Hotel in Jerusalem
#5 Family Hotel in Jerusalem
#5 Romantic Hotel in Jerusalem
#9 Luxury Hotel in Jerusalem
Price Range: $236 - $599 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — The American Colony Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 92
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Elegant, historical Boutique Hotel with complimentary hi speed WiFi in all guest rooms and public areas, complimentary use of business centre and 20 minutes free local & international calls. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
American Colony Jerusalem
American Colony Hotel Jerusalem

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