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When it comes to visiting the Holy Land, and especially Jerusalem, finding hotels to book with points can be frustrating. In fact, in Jerusalem, there are 4 options: Waldorf Astoria, Crowne Plaza, Ibis, and a Wyndham. Soon, circa mid 2020, Intercontinental will open a $130 million property that will give the best of the best a run for its money. Until then…there are 4.
While I would have much preferred to stay at the Waldorf Astoria, throwing down 95k points or $500+ a night just wasn’t going to happen, especially when we had full day tours planned. Not only is it a gorgeous property, but it’s location is right next to the Old City. If you’re looking for 5 star properties, I’d suggest investigating it alongside the King David and Mamilla.
We landed on the Crowne Plaza Jerusalem.
- When: May 2019
- Where: Jerusalem
- Stay: 4 nights
- Loyalty: IHG Spire + Platinum
- Perks: Club Level, room upgrade
- Rate: 20k per night
Both of my parents are Chase IHG Premier cardholders and, as a perk of the card, get a 4th night free when booking with points. Considering that this hotel is only 20k points per night, and cash rates were $225+, it was a fantastic value for money. Here’s a look at the math, but we booked two rooms for 13.5k per night, per room. IHG often sells miles for 1/2 cent, so you could essentially buy a $225 a night room for less than $70 per night.
- 3 x 20k per night – 4th night free with IHG Premier
- 10% as a perk of IHG Select
- 13.5k per night, pro-rated.
This is a big thing to note. The hotel is FAR from the Old City. If you have transportation lined up, great, but otherwise, you’re kind of on an island. You could walk up the street to hop on the train, but if you’re thinking you may waltz on over to Jaffa gate, think again. There is a shopping center down the road with a movie theatre ( we saw Avengers: End Game – epic experience ).
Not the best first impression at all. Front desk staff was gruff, the building was under construction, and no one helped us with our bags. Elite status was recognized, and a category upgrade given, along with club access, but to stay we had a welcomed arrival would just be a lie.
In fact, the arrival experience was so lackluster I was looking to see if there was any way we could change hotels and pivot. After convening in my parents room, they thought it more effort than it was worth, and we decided to stay.
We were upgraded into view rooms that had been updated. The rooms were a breath of fresh air compared to the lobby and common spaces of the hotel, but they left our head scratching with two issues. One…the safe was bolted to a shelf that could be easily removed. The second, the doors didn’t close flush with the ground. As in, we could hear everything in the hall, but worse yet, if I laid on the floor, I could see right under the door into the hallway.
On the plus side, they featured newly redone bathrooms and large flat screen tvs.
The best aspect of the club was the view. Unreal, 360 degree, sweeping views.
While the view was fantastic, and the food wasn’t too bad, there were major service issues. Multiple times during our 4 night stay we encountered food set out without plates and cutlery. Coffee machine was out of order or there just weren’t any cups in which to put coffee in if it were operational. In addition to these issues, we came up several times to just find crusty food laid out, and dirty plates sitting on tables.
Gym and Pool
There is a large pool complex and a gym. Both looked as though they could use an update.
Would I stay here again? For so few points, probably. It is a far, far cry from the likes of the Crowne Plaza Singapore, and fell short of even the Crowne Plaza LAX. With that said, in total, we spent 108k points total, for 2 rooms and 4 nights. How do you beat that?
The Waldorf has residences that can be rented, and if the price was right, I’d lock one of those down. Additionally, if we were just renting one room, I’d think about using my Citi Prestige and booking the Mamilla which is adjacent to the Old City ( rates were in the $400s ).
But…if cash isn’t an option, and you’re traveling after the Intercontinental Jerusalem opens, I’d stay there. Odds are it will be somewhere in the 50-70k range ( the Intercontinental Tel Aviv is 50k ), and at that rate I wouldn’t even look anywhere else. Throw in a 4th night free with the IHG Premier, and you are sitting golden in what looks to be a world class hotel in a hard to beat location.
Israel, Jordan, Egypt, and Doha
- Planning a trip to the Holy Land including how we got the points, which points we used, etc.
- Finding Award space on United’s Polaris for 3 people
- Finding Award space on Qatar Qsuites for 4 people
- Booking a Quad on Qatar QSuites with individual record locators
- My Experience using Groundlink
- St. Regis New York
- Intercontinental Barclay New York
- United Polaris Lounge Newark
- United Polaris Business Class 777-300ER Newark to Tel Aviv
- Reflections on our trip to Israel
- Intercontinental David Tel Aviv
- Visiting the Holy Sites of Jerusalem
- Crowne Plaza Jerusalem
- Why Masada should be on your Israeli bucket list.
- Sea of Galilee Hotel
- Combined 2nd review of Intercontinental David in Tel Aviv ( this time in Club room )
- Royal Jordanian Economy TLV-AMM-CAI
- Ritz Carlton Cairo booked via STARS
- Why I would HIGHLY recommend Experience Egypt Tours to visit Cairo
- Royal Jordanian Economy from CAI to AMM to Aqaba
- Problems to avoid getting a Jordanian Visa
- Intercontinental Aqaba
- Why Wadi Rum should be on your bucket list
- Martian Tent at the Mazayen Rum Camp Wadi Rum
- Marriott Petra
- Why you need a full day at Petra
- Crowne Plaza Dead Sea
- Royal Jordanian Business Class Amman to Doha
- St Regis Doha – Empire Suite
- Qatar Airways Business Class Lounge Doha
- Qatar Airways QSuites Doha to Dallas
- American Express Centurion Lounge Dallas
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