The stretch of Mediterranean shoreline between the ancient Roman port of Caesarea and the modern port city of Haifa was also home to another major harbor of ancient times — Dor — founded by the Phoenicians and used by King Solomon. Today, adjacent to the ruins of Tel Dor, sits Nahsholim Seaside Resort, whose boutique hotel is as beautiful and comfortable as it is convenient to the beach.
Nahsholim somehow received a permit to build its newest wings right on the beach; since that time, new regulations are in place that make it unlikely that any other Israeli resort will be be built as close to the water’s edge. The 24 rooms and suites that comprise the boutique section of the sprawling resort rival those in the finest hotels in the country, let alone properties in walking distance to tranquil beaches.
Without a doubt, the outstanding feature of eight of the ground-floor rooms are private pools, which extend from porches equipped with plush, round day beds. These rooms are for couples only, while 12 units are suites suitable for families. Older sections of the resort include more modest accommodations for couples and families.
All the boutique rooms and suites boast impressive interiors furnished with king-sized beds with designer back-lit headboards, 46” flat-screen LED televisions with satellite programming, espresso machines, electric kettles and mini-refrigerators, while the roomy closets contain laptop-accommodating safes, ironing boards, terrycloth robes and slippers. Free high-speed Wi-Fi extends to all guest quarters.
The spacious bathrooms outfitted in natural stone are nothing short of elegant, with deep bathtubs and separate shower stalls with multiple shower heads. Amenities by Sea of Spa are enriched with Dead Sea minerals.
To leverage these luxurious guest units, Nahsholim has embarked on an ambitious initiative to attract destination weddings and events. In January, the resort announced its agreement with one of Israel’s leading chefs, Aviv Moshe of Tel Aviv’s Messa Group, to be the exclusive caterer for functions at the property’s beach, lawn and glass-enclosed hall overlooking the sea.
Fortunately, there does not have to be a catered affair to enjoy good food. The hotel’s Rosemary restaurant serves a lavish complimentary breakfast buffet every morning. Nearby Caesarea is also home to some of Israel’s best restaurants.
Finally, there is a lot more to do in the area of the resort than relax on the beach and in the pools. The archaeological site of Tel Dor has only been partially excavated, and guests may roam at will and dig for their own finds of ancient pottery or even coins, preferably after taking the free tour of the site and fascinating neighboring museum offered on Saturday mornings. The Caesarea National Park, including its stunning reconstructed Roman amphitheatre, is among the most important and beautiful historical sites in the country. Even closer, a few miles inland in the foothills of the Carmel mountain range, is wine country, birthplace of literally dozens of Israel’s oldest and finest wineries.
Published rates: Prices for double rooms in the boutique section, with breakfast, range from $399 per night for weeknights in low season to $569 per night on weekends in high season. In low season, check for weeknight two-for-one specials.
Text by Buzzy Gordon, who was a guest of Nahsholim Seaside Resort for purposes of review. Photos courtesy of the resort.