By Candice Krieger
December 8, 2009
The Israeli business press is full of reports about the Ritz Carlton hotel chain opening its first hotel in Israel.
The 110-room hotel, which will also include 85 apartments, is due to open in March 2012. A total of $160 million is being invested in the project, which is co-owned by Tidhar, an Israeli property company.
Gil Geva, co-owner of The Ritz-Carlton, Herzliya, said “The Ritz-Carlton will set a new standard for luxury management and comfort in Israel’s hotel and tourism industry. It is poised to drive growth in Herzliya, as well as tourism sites all over Israel."
So far so good. Or is it? While the provision of jobs and boost to tourism will be welcomed, I can not help but feel a slight sense of déjà vue. It was not so long ago that I was blogging about Robert De Niro’s Nobu hotel and restaurant chain, which was planning to open at Herzliya's marina next year.The proposed Nobu project has since been cancelled due to the global financial crisis, leaving vacant land which Ritz Carlton will now take up. Let us hope for Ritz Carlton, and the Israeli economy’s sake, that I won't be blogging about another such project this time next year.