Israel welcomes record number of tourists in H1 2018

The Setai, Sea of Galilee, Israel. Photo credit: The Setai Hotels(Image: The Setai)

Israel saw a record number of tourists in the first half of 2018, injecting more than NIS 12 billion ($3.3 billion) into the Israeli economy, according to the latest stats from the Israeli Ministry of Tourism.

The Central Bureau of Statistics recorded that approximately 2.1 million tourists entered the countryan increase of 19 percent over the same period in 2017, which totaled 1.74 million. This is also a 26 percent increase from 2016.

The United States remains the largest source country for incoming tourists. A total of 470,200 U.S. tourists entered the country in 2018, 17 percent more than 2017. More Canadians than ever are also traveling to Israel with a 14-percent visitor increase in 2018 compared to 2017.

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These are the most recent hotel openings in 2018 meeting the increase in demand for the country: 

The Drisco 

The 42-room Drisco hotel in Tel Aviv opened in June 2018 after a $35-million investment. Architect and interior designer Ari Shaltiel led this hotel development near the beaches, the Neve Tzedek neighborhood, Jaffa's flea market and Old Jaffa.

The Dave South 

Brown Hotels is set to open The Dave South in September 2018 in the Nahalat Binyamin area in the center of Tel Aviv. The property joins The Dave West property in Tel Aviv that opened earlier this year in Brown Hotels’ new brand. 

The Lighthouse Hotel 

Brown Hotels' The Lighthouse Hotel is opening in July 2018. The new hotel will have 103 guestrooms near the Tel Aviv beaches. 

The Link Hotel & Hub 

Dan Hotels opened the Link Hotel & Hub in the center of Tel Aviv after an investment of more than $11 million. The hotel is near the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Opera House, Cameri Theatre, Rabin Square and the Sarona Market.

The Setai, Sea of Galilee Expansion

The Setai, Sea of Galilee, one of two properties within The Setai Hotels brand portfolio in Israel, will add 47 new villas in August 2018. The property officially opened in June 2017 with 110 villas and suites on the eastern shore of the Sea of Galilee.