We'll be in Israel in December and am looking for recommendations for a great hotel or B&B in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. We've gotten several suggestions for the Inbal, but this is a huge American type hotel and also really expensive..$1,200 per night for 5 of us to stay in a basic room. We'd rather stay in smaller boutique style hotels. We'd like something really nice, but not $1,200 per night nice and with more character than the Inbal or the King David. Any suggestions appreciated. Thanks!
If you don't mind staying in east Jerusalem, there is a small family-run hotel near the Damascus Gate that we stayed at a number of years ago. I absolutely loved it. All our colleagues at the conference we were attending stayed at a fancy-pants place in west Jerusalem, but we hated the look of it. The Hotel Jerusalem has only 14 rooms, each one a gem. Breakfast was served in the garden. The bus to west Jerusalem stopped at the door. It seemed to be a place that a lot of visiting clergy favoured.
When we were in Tel Aviv we stayed at the Deborah Hotel. Ordinary as I remember, but affordable for us.
You are likely to do much better by renting a flat in Jerusalem. St. Andrew's Scottish Guest House is basic and much less expensive than most hotels. It is well located. The Three Arches gets mixed reviews - they were remodeling, and it depended on getting a remodeled room, but I think they completed it a year ago. It is right across the street from the King David Hotel and much less expensive. Use the forums on tripadvisor.com for more recommendations and information. It is an excellent resource.