Israels latest hotel boom: From boutique to retro-chic

*King David Hotel: World-renowned designer-restaurateur Adam Tihany is behind the redesign and renovations of this grande dame of Jerusalem's hotels — including new guest rooms, restaurants and a facelift for the famous lobby.

*Dan Pearl Hotel: This charming boutique hotel opened in mid-1996 and is located at the northwestern corner of the walls of Jerusalem's Old City.

*David Intercontinental Hotel: Tel Aviv's newest luxury hotel is set to open in 1998 in Israel's center of business, commerce and entertainment. Located on the shore of the Mediterranean, it's adjacent to the Hassan Bek Mosque, the Tel Aviv Convention Center and the retro-chic Neve Tzedek neighborhood.

*Radisson Moriah Plaza Tel Aviv Hotel: This hotel has just completed a dramatic facelift, transforming its dated 1970s look into a masterwork of post-modern design.

*Hyatt Regency Dead Sea Spa & Resort: The largest spa hotel in the Middle East opened in late summer 1996 and promises to be a popular spot for those looking to relax and rejuvenate at the Dead Sea. Its vast spa is reminiscent of Roman splendors — and this hotel — as well as two other new Dead Sea properties — hopes to create a market beyond the traditional "cure" clientele seeking skin-ailment treatment with the Dead Sea's minerals.

*Dead Sea Hilton and Holiday Inn Crowne Plaza Dead Sea: Located near the Hyatt Regency, the Dead Sea Hilton and Holiday Inn Crowne Plaza, are slated to open in late 1997.

*Holiday Inn Haifa and Haifa Hilton: The two new hotels are under construction in Israel's largest port city and should be completed in 1997. Additional hotels under the Holiday Inn chain are being built in Ashkelon, Nahariya and at Ben-Gurion Airport.

*Caravanserai Inn: A "boutique" hotel is being created in one of the long-abandoned caravanserais (travelers' inns) within the ramparts of the ancient city of Akko (this may also be one of Israel's most unusual hotels).

There are also growing bed and breakfast accommodations on farms and moshavim (communal farms) throughout Israel. These clean, simple and inexpensive lodgings in small villages provide a charm often missed in big-city hotels.

For a complete listing of Israel hotels, call (800) 596-11199.