We stayed at the Inbar Hotel for our trip to Arad and the Dead Sea and it had its fair share of peculiarities. The hotel room itself was just fine–comfortable bed, nice bathroom, plenty of hot water. There was actually a bathtub, but the hotel thoughtfully leaves out the stopper so that one can’t actually take a bath. Actually this seems to be an Israeli custom. Our sink in our apartment also has no stopper which makes it inconvenient to shave (in the case of the bathroom sink) and inconvenient to wash dishes (in the case of the kitchen sink). This seems paradoxical to me since using a stopper for these activities allows for the use of much less water. But I digress–back to Inbar Arad.
The most peculiar aspect of the Hotel Inbar is that it styles itself “Inbar Internet Arad” . But there is no access to the Internet from any of the rooms and guests have to purchase Internet access at additional cost (which can only be accessed from the lobby and dining room). There is a computer terminal in the lobby, but if you need something printed, the only way is to email the person at the front desk who may be able to download it to the hotel printer.
Breakfast at the Inbar is the usually expected (and much anticipated) feast. To the left are the hot dishes–Shakshouka, hard boiled eggs, scrambled eggs (oddly named “hard cooked”), strudel and french toast. Nearby, hot cereal with a variety of toppings (ground cinnamon, etc). Then come the cheeses–about 10 varieties. In the middle, a variety of fish dishes, fruit compotes and cold cereals. On the right, about 20 kinds of salads. The only drawback was that the staff couldn’t seem to keep the hot dishes hot. But I doubt anyone left hungry. I discovered that I could make a delicious breakfast sandwich by splitting a roll and filing it with scrambled eggs, shakshouka sauce, yellow cheese and Israeli salsa (chopped tomatoes, onions and cucumber in a light vinagrette).
When you get a key to this hotel (and I suspect its generally true), in addition to the key there is a large white plate (about the size of a credit card). This must be inserted into a slot near the door in order to turn on the electricity in the room. I guess that prevents guests from abusing the lights. I think someone told me it was primarily designed to prevent the use of the air conditioner when guests are not in the room.
For reasons I didn’t understand, there is a lovely pool which is open only in the morning when most guests would be wanting to tour.
If this sounds “bitchy” its not intended to be so. We enjoyed our stay in the Inbar and would gladly stay there again.