One of the wonderful things about this country is that you don't have to go far to get away from it all. This was blissfully confirmed on a recent stay at the Ramot Resort Hotel in Moshav Ramot, half an hour's drive northeast of Tiberias.
While Moshav Ramot has guest houses run by the moshav, the privately owned Ramot Resort Hotel is an ethereal entity unto itself.
The elegant 40-dunam (10-acre) compound is comprised of a five-story hotel, 43 five-star private chalets, a sprawling pool area and snack bar, a synagogue, a conference hall and lush, well-manicured grounds, all overlooking Lake Kinneret.
While the four-star hotel has 80 rooms, there are 18 five-star wooden chalets and 25 chalets that are graded as five-star+ deluxe suites, says hotel manager Aviram Goren.
I had the pleasure of staying in one of the deluxe suites - and I mean pleasure.
Billed as spa chalets, the deluxe suites are designed to render the guest every possible comfort and personal luxury. The spacious main room has a bedroom area, as well as a kitchenette and living-room section. Off to the left are the bathroom and a children's room, and to the right is a small wooden terrace with a table and four chairs that overlooks the lake. The chalet - and in fact every part of the refined hotel compound - is immaculate and tastefully designed.
In the main room of the deluxe suite there is a king-size bed with larger than king-size pillows, a 42-inch flat-screen TV suspended from the ceiling, a DVD player, a desk, a counter with bar stools, a sofa and chairs, a kitchenette equipped with coffeemaker and coffee/tea, a wood-burning stove (for cold winter nights) and oh, did I forget to mention a large Jacuzzi right at the foot of the bed, complete with candles?
In that vein, the bathroom features a roomy state-of-the-art shower stall equipped with a large square overhead shower fixture, which cascades like a rainfall, and powerful hydrotherapy jets on the sides. And there is a commodious dry sauna. For safety's sake, after it has been switched on, the sauna turns itself off automatically after 40 minutes.
The children's room is furnished with a single bed, a bunk bed, a crib (which can be rolled out of the room if not needed), a closet and a suspended flat-screen TV.
Another feature of this deluxe accommodation is that if you sign up for a massage, it is given to you in your room. And although the hotel has a large and lovely kosher dining room, you can have a sumptuous breakfast brought to your chalet to enjoy in the peace and tranquility of your terrace.
In the hotel itself, the rooms have been given the same careful attention to detail. Designed in an Asian theme, the décor is aesthetically minimalist. Every room in the hotel has a lake view and, depending on the floor, each room has a small garden or a balcony.
In fact, the entire compound capitalizes on the beauty of the natural surroundings. In the hotel, the corridors of the three floors of guest rooms are made of glass to let the outside in. In the pool area, as guests loll on chaise longues on the grassy lawn or take a dip in the half-Olympic-size pool, they have a full view of the Kinneret and the wall of rugged mountains behind it. And in the 220-seat dining room, every table has a view of the lake through the wall-to-wall windows.
In its capacity as a spa getaway, the Ramot Resort Hotel focuses more on tranquility than activity. It has a fitness room, an outdoor basketball and volleyball area and an indoor ping-pong table, but guests who want to take part in more active sports don't have far to go. In the vicinity there is access to the beach, horseback riding, cycling, jeeps, a ferryboat and the LunaGal water park.
My only regret is that I stayed at the Ramot Resort Hotel for only one night, as I had to get back to the "it all" I'd had the golden opportunity to get away from.
The writer was a guest of the Ramot Resort Hotel.