Casa Ceasarea

Israel’s Boutique Bed & Breakfast

The storm raged across the golf course, battering hail against the big French windows, but with the A/C humming away, we didn’t care. Casa Caesarea in the thunder and the rain is very cosy. With plenty of books to read, tea to make, films to watch on the huge flat-screen TV, or a bath to take, wrapped up after in the sumptuous towels, we were home from home in this luxury homestay.

Ex-New Yorker Anne will welcome you into this unique property, about half-an-hour north of Tel Aviv on Israel’s Mediterranean coast. “I want my guests to feel more than welcome,” she said. “I want them to feel pampered.” A bottle of local wine was waiting for us on the table, but it will be the home-made biscuits that my girlfriend, Marina, and I will remember more. As is often the case, it’s the small things that leave the greatest impression.

The marble floor and cream décor creates an elegant and classic feel. Two bedrooms flank a central common area, both with access to the property-wide balcony that overlooks the golfing green and the neighbouring house (which seems to be a scale replica of the Parthenon). The room on the left is all white and would be perfect for aspiring princesses. The one Marina and I went for had a nice big bath to lounge in, and we both loved the wild garden scene carved into the king-sized bed, which was massive. So big, in fact, that Anne had to get custom linen made for it.

You might be a bit pushed for space in the kitchen to cook a meal for more than a couple of people, but it’s well-appointed with a coffee maker, hot water dispenser and microwave, plus there are a few places just a phone call away that deliver meals if you don’t want to go out to a nearby restaurants. You definitely won’t be short of space in the bathroom though. The tub was big enough to get my 6’4 frame in and listen to the thunder outside, as the local Dead Sea products did wonders for my skin. The locally-produced soap, shampoo and moisturising creams all help to remind you that you’re in Israel.

If you are here in more clement weather than we were, you’ll have the huge terrace to enjoy, as well as the pool, which will pretty much double your floor space. The villa is west-facing, so your evening out on the balcony will start with watching the sunset over the Mediterranean.

I had a serious bout of man flu, so wasn’t going to do much sightseeing in the nearby Roman ruins in the rain, but true to her word, Anne made sure that we had enough breakfast and tea, and anything else we needed.

And something special here – far and beyond being made to feel welcome as a guest: we felt so looked after, it was homely. “I’ve loved running this place since the moment we opened, and I love most of the people who come through. And if you’re going to do something right, you have to do it with a full heart.” Full-hearted is exactly what Casa Caesarea is.

A luxury apartment with no minimum stay – it can be yours for just a day.

Robb Pritchard

Pritchard met our publishing director back in 2013 whilst shlepping their way along the Gumball Rally. Need a bond be brokered over anything more than a good chassis and wide wheels? We think not. As a hard core 4x4 enthusiast Rob's time is spent either knee deep in mud or writing delightful travel features.

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