A front page advertisement in The Jerusalem Post on Sunday advertised the
current Ambassadorial residence of the British Embassy as being for
The prestigious 2,860 sq.m. Ramat Gan property, with its
huge garden and swimming pool, has been home to a long series of British
ambassadors for periods of two years and upwards – but current ambassador
Matthew Gould will be the last British ambassador to live there.
First Jewish British ambassador to Israel set to
beautiful house,” he told the Post, “but access and parking are
The house at 2 Simtat Hama’alot is on the corner of a small
side street opposite the water tower on one side and accessible by a steep
staircase from the main road on the other side.
Guests invited to
large-scale events like the Queen’s birthday, often had to park their cars
several streets away because there was simply no room.
ambassadors lived in a kind of splendid isolation.
There is a small
island of ambassadorial residences in another part of Ramat Gan, but none of the
British Ambassador’s immediate neighbors are ambassadors or even low-ranking
Minorities, whether religious, ethnic or even professional,
like to live close to each other, and most ambassadorial residences in Israel
are located in Herzliya Pituah and Kfar Shmaryahu which are in close proximity
to each other.
Gould has his eye on Kfar Shmaryahu, where many of the
houses would give him far greater scope for indoor entertaining than he has in
the current residence, where the public rooms are somewhat small, and where
theater- style, sit-down functions have been rather cramped.
famous people have been guests at the British residence, but this is not likely
to be a selling point with any real estate developer, whose first thought will
be to assess how many apartments he can build on the land. Quite a lot actually,
if he gets a permit.
But it would be a pity to tear down such a stately
old house that also boasts a genuine fireplace.