Israel's hotels look to the stars as Austrian firm wins ratings bid

Tourism Minister Uzi Landau; calls development "consumer revolution"; system assigns hotels ratings on a basis of 1-5 stars.

Jerusalem Hotel 521 (photo credit: SHMUEL BAR-AM)
Jerusalem Hotel 521
(photo credit: SHMUEL BAR-AM)
Hotels in Israel will soon be seeing stars – the kind that rate them, that is.
On Wednesday, the Tourism Ministry approved a bid by Austrian company Ennemoser to rate Israel’s hotels in accordance with the Hotelstars system, used currently in 15 European countries.
The system assigns hotels ratings of 1-5 stars based on 270 criteria. The ratings, which will be published on the Tourism Ministry website, will remain in effect for three years at a time.
“This is a consumer revolution in tourism,” said Tourism Minister Uzi Landau.
“The time has come to bring order into the chaos and to ensure that consumers will enjoy transparency, accessible and objective information and value for money.
We want to get to a position that enables every tourist to visit here, and for every family to enjoy a vacation in Israel without breaking into their savings account.”
In January 2013, the Knesset Finance Committee approved new tourism service regulations requiring the use of the Hotelstars system.
Rankings issued under old regulations are set to expire in September. The ministry published the tender in July of that year.
Ennemoser should have little problem figuring out the system. Its founder, Klaus Ennemoser, was among the three people who created it, and serves as the president of the Hotelstars organization.