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Leonardo Beach Tel Aviv Hotel
Ranked #66 of 100 Hotels in Tel Aviv
Reviewed June 12, 2012

Me and my girlfriend have stayed in Leonardo Basel Tel Aviv for a week from 6 to 11 of June 2012.

A few words about booking first. I have booked a room in April for June through the hotel site using early bird discount (at least a month before arrival) and got a pretty decent price rounded to average of 150$ a day. For pure comparison purpose I checked prices in May for June, it turned out that they have doubled (245$) and on certain days almost tripled (355$). So be sure to book in advance.

The hotel it self is situated on Hayarkon street which is the second line from the sea - the beach is across the road.

To get there from Ben Gurion airport you should first take a train to Tel Aviv Savidor station which costs 15 sheqel (hereinafter nis, 1 nis ~ 0.26$) for an adult ticket, keep the ticket fro the whole trip as it is required for both entrance and exit from a station. The train station is located near Tel Aviv 2000 bus terminal more often called Arlozorov bus terminal as it is situated on Arlozorov street. Tel Aviv Diamond exchange and another Leonardo Hotel (City Tower) are nearby.

From there you should walk past the bus terminal to Arlozorov street (you don't need to cross it) and find yourself on a bus stop. Be prepared that most writings are in hebrew only, that unfortunately includes bus routes, but not street names. There fore all the buses I used were checked by trial and error method =)

As Arlozorov street goes all the way to the sea shore and crosses Hayarkon street at this point you may opt to walk by foot to Hayarkon junction and then go left on Hayarkon until you find the hotel, which is quite easy to spot. However it is a good 40 minute walk by foot, maybe even more depending on your speed.

Please note that the direction you should be going is to the sea and Hayarkon, any local will gladly help you with that if you get disoriented but look through the map of Tel Aviv beforehand just in case.

If you would like to go by bus then you can use number 61 (probably number 161 will do also, it should pass a solid piece of Arlozorov street before it makes a turn but I haven't checked.). The bus ticket costs 6.60 nis for an adult. You should exit on Dizengoff street, the stop is called Dizengoff - Gordon (stops are announced). The bus may stop before or after crossing, it solely depends on the driver for some reason.

As soon as you find Gordon street which crosses Dizengoff go right (it will be up the hill), first you will cross Ben Yehuda street and then you will get to Hayarkon. The hotel will be a few blocks to the right, altogether it is as 10 minute walk.

If you somehow miss Gordon street, do not worry - any street going right and uphill will eventually get you to Hayrkon. Just keep walking until you see the sea shore.

I cannot comment on taxi price form airport to the hotel as I have not used it myself, but people around internet claim it will be around 80$.

By the way there is a supermarket near Ben Yehuda - Gordon crossing and a lot of good bars, cafes and restaurants along Ben Yehuda street, Dizengoff on the other hand is mostly shops with some smaller supermarkets and cafes.

Now that we are finally there it is time to say a few words about the hotel itself. We had a nice room on the 6 floor. It was a bit small and aged but not beyond my level of acceptance, there are newer and bigger rooms however, so you might want to see the room before you take it.

We had a large bed, flat tv with most international channels, a safe free of charge, air condition and a computerized minibar. The last one we have not used but the hotel brochure said that you cannot put your own products in there and anything you take will be automatically charged even if you put it back. For additional 10$ a day a fridge is available, haven't used though.

Air condition worked well, so the room was always cool if we wanted it to be so. I should point out that the bathroom had no ventilation beside a small window. It is not a negative feature in itself, but to keep the room cool you should either close that window (not recommended as the bathroom will stay wet constantly) or leave it open but close the door to the bathroom.

Cleaning was very good and a few times a manager came in to ask if it is ok. Our room attendant also kept a good supply of toiletries so we always had enough soap, shampoo, shower gel and other stuff.

The only negative thing I can say about the room is that it had poor sound isolation - we could hear anything and everything happening in the corridor or neighboring rooms but as I sleep with noise as good as without, it was not a problem for me but might be a serious issue for some travelers though.

We had bed and breakfast and didn't eat lunch or dinner at the hotel. Breakfast was everything you might expect from a 4 star hotel. However, people that like to eat ham or bacon on breakfast might be be disappointed as pork is not served. It was not at all a problem for me as I enjoyed every other dish (especially Shukshuka, the spelling might wrong, but you won't miss it).

In my opinion you should be prepared to the absence of certain dishes consisting of not kosher products (e.g. pork) if you are going to Israel. Consult Kashrut for other possible not kosher food.

It also important to know about Shabat. Shabat (Saturday) is a special day when observant Jew must follow certain rules. On Shabat one elevator in the hotel will work only in certain hours and the breakfast will be a bit different. Also most shops, bars, restaurants etc will be closed at least till 17 pm or even further. It's more like a Sunday.

Do not choose Shabat as check in day because your check in may be delayed. Shabat starts around 17 pm on Friday and ends around the same time on Saturday.

A little off topic. Only several hotels in Tel Aviv are in the first line: (in order of appearance) Sheraton, Orchid, Crowne Plaza, Marina and HIlton, there is another similar building among them which I believe is a residential block.

Now back to Leonardo Basel. The location is very good as you can enjoy the beach and promenade for a much better value than in a first line Hotel.

The beaches in Tel Aviv are sandy, the entrance is mostly free. There is at least one beach with an entrance fee but it is located a bit away from the tourist attraction areas, so you are unlikely to get there. All the other things on the beach (umbrella, chair etc.) are yours for an extra fee. Please note that there is also a beach which on certain days is for men or women only.

A beach is usually divided into areas for sunbathing where swimming is allowed (there is a lifeguard tower and sea is deeper) and areas for games where swimming is not allowed (there is no lifeguard tower and sea is not deep deep at all for hundreds of meters). There are no other major differences between those areas. Every beach has some places that provide shade for those who prefer it to direct sunshine.

I would strongly recommend not to leave you room in sunny time without some uv-protection cream/spray, a bottle of water and a cap/hat/bandana. It may not seem hot but the sun is very active and you would not want to get a sunburn. When I was a kid I got a third degree burn from sunbathing too much and I take protection very seriously since then.

The hotel provides an outdoor swimming pool with sunbathing areas if you do not wish to go to the beach. Free bicycle rent for hotel clients is available. Car parking costs 40 nis a day.

I would also like to inform you that if you are not an Israel citizen you will have 0 % VAT rate for the hotel and ceratain services received in the hotel. Official information can be found here: http://ozar.mof.gov.il/customs/eng/tourinfo.htm. Booking through hotel site does not include VAT by default.

Also regardless of what the hotel brochure says about exemption from VAT for meals if only payed in foreign currency, you may pay in any currency including sheqel and still have 0 % VAT rate. Official comments on this issue can be found here: http://ozar.mof.gov.il/customs/eng/faq.htm (see 16.07.00 section).

That's all about the hotel itself, to summarize Leonardo Basel is a rather good deal and meets the standards you would expect from a hotel of such level.

A few more tips for Tel Aviv travelers that wish to explore Israel.

Arlozorov terminal (you can get there by bus 61 from Dizengoff street) provides routes for multiple destinations. We have traveled to Jerusalem and to Ein Gedi Spa (Dead Sea Spa) via bus.

The bus to Jerusalem is number 480 and goes every 10 minutes, so you will not miss it. One way trip costs 16 nis, round trip goes with discount and costs around 30 nis, the trip is about 1 hour long depending on traffic conditions. The bus arrives to the Central Station of Jerusalem from where it is convenient to take a tram to the Old City (Damascus Gate station) or a bus (Jaffa Gate stop). Buses go back to Tel Aviv every 10 minutes from the 3 floor of the Central Station.

The bus to the dead sea is number 421 and goes every day from Arlozorov terminal (of course beside Shabat) at 8.40 am. It's final destination is Ein Bokek (most dead sea hotels are situated there). The trip takes around 3 hours. The price of a one way ticket is 47 nis, round trip is 80 nis.

We did not go to Ein Bokek, instead we got out on the Ein Gedi Spa stop because it has dead sea spa facilities and the trip takes only 2 hours. The bus back to Tel Aviv may come from 14 pm to Ein Gedi Spa stop, real time depends on traffic, ours arrived at 14.30 pm, but I strongly recommend to be on the stop from 14 pm as It is the only bus to Tel Aviv. Bus 486 to Jerusalem passes this stop also.

All the information about buses is available at the carrier website www.egged.co.il. All the buses have air condition and free wi-fi.

Ein Gedi spa offers you dead sea beach, dead sea mud, sulfur water shower/bath, an outside pool, a restaurant and minor spa facilities.It also has a rather highly priced cosmetic shop (pass it and buy dead sea products in Ben Gurion airport duty free on your way back).

Entrance ticket is 119 nis, we took silver package for 150 nis (entrance, locker, towel, souvenir bag of mud, a soft/hot drink voucher and lunch are included). There are packages for 325 nis and 499 nis with more options included.

The Ein Gedi spa is something, be sure to try it or any other dead sea facility. "Swim" in the dead sea, cover yourself with mud, take a sulfur water shower (be sure to remove your jewelry beforehand), take a regular shower and you will be born anew.

Last but not least, if you like shopping I would advise you to leave money for the duty free shops in the Ben Gurion airport. The biggest duty free I have ever seen so far.

All in all Israel is a great experience!

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank lokilajenn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded July 3, 2012

Dear Guest.
Thank you for your review; it is by far the most detailed and informative review we have ever encountered! We really appreciate you taking the time to write all those things, and are certain other guests will find it very useful! We are very glad that you had a nice experience in Israel and at Leonardo Basel, and that you enjoyed all that our hotel has to offer. We are making sure to offer all the best services (pool, free Wi-Fi, free bicycles) for our guests to get a great service for a reasonable cost. Thank you for choosing to stay with us; we would love to see you again amongst our guests in the future.
Regards. Eitan Ohana

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460 - 466 of 932 reviews

Reviewed June 11, 2012

I stayed there this June for 7 days. The location is excellent, 5 minutes to the beach ( but can not go to the beach directly, across a road), many different restaurants nearby, money exchange also convenient. From my room, I can see the ocean. There is a small swimming pool in the hotel, very clean. The receptionists are all kind and smiling, I remember one old receptionist is called Michael, a lady call Tal. Another handsome boy is also very kind but I don't remember his name. After I checked out, I asked their help to call my friend since there was something wrong with my mobile, they helped me without any charge. I will stay there again if I can visit the holy land again.

Room Tip: Corner rooms is bigger than usual.
  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled on business
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Thank Ying P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded July 3, 2012

Dear Ying,
Thank you for your review; guests' comments are very important to us. We are very glad to hear that you had such a nice experience here; our staff are doing their job with love and we are glad it is obvious. Thank you for choosing to stay with us; we would love to see you again amongst our guests in the future.
Best regards
Eitan Ohana

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 11, 2012

Good Locaton
good Breakfast.
Problems with parking

  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank irit a
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded July 3, 2012

Dear Irit,
Thank you for your review. We are glad you liked our varied breakfast. We are well aware that parking is a big problem in Tel Aviv, as well as in its hotels, and are trying to do the best we can and always offer other solutions to help our guests with that.
Thank you for choosing to stay with us; we would love to see you again amongst our guests in the future.
Eitan Ohana

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Reviewed June 8, 2012

On our trip to Israel, we stayed twice at the Basel, at the beginning and the end. Firstly the staff. All the staff we encountered were excellent and helpful. Certainly no one asked us to rate them on TA or anywhere else, and were not offered a bribe to do so! The entrance to the hotel is not guest friendly there being five or six up to the front door. A ramp would be a great asset. Check in was quick and efficient, we were given a card with the internet access code. WiFi was excellent a good signal even when sitting by the outside pool.

Our first room on the 2nd floor was just OK, not very spacious and too small for the bed settee for a third person. A mirror over the counter would make the room brighter and look larger. A lack of drawer provision was a minus. The bathroom with shower over the bath worked well, but would be better without the bath and a shower cubicle in its place. The bathroom door has seen better days and could do with renewal. The doors to all the rooms need updating and a spyhole provided.

Second room was a wow in comparison, still lacked a mirror but was a larger room with nice big windows overlooking the beach and marina. Bathroom was excellent, lovely big shower cubicle and modern wash basin. No drawers but ample space in mirror fronted wardrobes.

Rooms are clean, beds are comfortable, and breakfast is typical Israeli buffet style. Just excellent. Just make sure Alexandra makes your cappuccino.

Room Tip: Try for 6th floor 620 is excellent
  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Digglegate
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded July 3, 2012

Dear Guest,
Thank you for your review; guests' comments are very important to us. We are glad that you had such a good service experience with our staff. The free WiFi is a great bonus which we are glad we can supply. The rooms are all in a process of being renovated, as well as the bathrooms, as you could see by the second room you had. Soon, all rooms will be done. Thank you for choosing to stay with us; we would love to see you again amongst our guests in the future.
Eitan Ohana

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 7, 2012

The hotel is OK - good location and clean. Staff were helpful and the breakfast has a good amount of variety. Note that they charge almost twice as much for parking as the (guarded) car park right next door. My main complaint about the hotel relates to parking - we drove to the hotel from the north in a rental car, and returned the car to the agency the next morning. When I checked out, they tried to charge me a huge amount for parking. I told them we only parked for one night, and the desk staff told me "but you stayed here for 6 nights". Well yes, but we only had a rental car for one of those nights! Then they asked for a copy of the rental agreement for the car. They should not make assumptions like this, and it took a long time then to get the bill sorted out. As this was at check out, this marred an otherwise acceptable stay.

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Lou187147
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded July 3, 2012

Dear Guest,
Thank you for your review; guests' comments are an important tool that enables us to understand our guests' needs. We are glad to hear you were content by the service level at our hotel. Parking, unfortunately, is a problem all around Tel Aviv as well as at the hotels.
The parking lot across the street, although cheaper, requires taking your car out by 7:00 in the morning. We are soon starting a new work method which will make it easier on our guests to park and for us to keep track on correct parking charges.
Thank you for choosing to stay with us; we would love to see you again amongst our guests in the future.
Eitan Ohana

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 31, 2012

My family stayed at the leonardo hotel for four nights. We had a very good time The staff is very welcoming every one. Breakfast is served nicely and has a large selection. The hotel is close to the beach with a reasonable price. Order a sea vieW room.

  • Stayed: May 2012
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Thank Dd1964
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 30, 2012

Very close to the sea. Hotel have excellent sea-view rooms. Stuff is very nice & helpful! Service Girls at lobby bar are amazing ;)
Definitely Coming back soon!

  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled on business
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Thank VladLesnikov
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Leonardo Beach Tel Aviv Hotel

Address: 156 Ha-Yarkon, Tel Aviv 6345115, Israel (Formerly Leonardo Basel Hotel)
Phone Number:
Location: Israel > Tel Aviv District > Tel Aviv
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#26 On the Beach Hotel in Tel Aviv
#42 Family Hotel in Tel Aviv
#44 Luxury Hotel in Tel Aviv
Price Range: $114 - $249 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Leonardo Beach Tel Aviv Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 134
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Basel Tel Aviv

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