Cite: Smith, Hotel Design in British Mandate Palestine

Smith, Daniella Ohad. "Hotel Design in British Mandate Palestine: Modernism and the Zionist Vision ." Journal of Israeli History 29,1 (2010): 99-123.


From the early 1920s through the 1930s, an important yet forgotten avant-garde architectural phenomenon developed in the Zionist community of British Mandate Palestine. In cities and resort regions across the country, several dozen modernist hotels were built for a new type of visitor: the Zionist tourist. Often the most architecturally significant structures in their locales and designed by leading local architects educated in some of Europe’s most progressive schools, these hotels were conceived along ideological lines and represented a synthesis of social requirements, cutting-edge aesthetics, and utopian national ideals. They responded to a complex mixture of sentiments, including European standards of modern comfort and the longing to remake Palestine, the historical homeland of the Jewish people, for a newly liberated, progressive nation. This article focuses on Jerusalem’s most ambitious modernist hotel, the Eden Hotel, to evaluate how the architecture of tourism became a political and aesthetic tool in the promotion of Zionist Palestine.


Keywords: Zionist national style; Palestine tourism; Eden Hotel; King David Hotel; Palace Hotel; Alexander Baerwald; Julius Berger; Josef Frank; Gustave-Adolphe Hufschmid; Alexander Koch; Leopold Krakauer; Abraham Lifschitz; Julius Posener; Yohanan Ratner; Emil Vogt; Werner Joseph Wittkower, British Mandate, Israel: Tourism from, Israel: Architecture, Hotel Industry

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