Stepping out for the Seder

Not just for tourists, a range of venues offer no-cook solutions for the first night of Pessah.

King David Hotel dinner table 521 (photo credit: Courtesy)
King David Hotel dinner table 521
(photo credit: Courtesy)
When I was growing up in Montreal, we used to have the two Seders at our house with family and friends. But after my grandparents passed away, my parents and my brother and I would spend the week of Pessah at a kosher hotel in the Laurentian Mountains called the Castle des Monts. It was a great place and, in fact, was a major locale mentioned in Mordechai Richler’s best-selling novel The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz. When the hotel burned down, our family ventured farther afield and spent our Pessahs at hotels in New York’s Catskill Mountains. One year there was a snowstorm that was so severe it prevented us from driving to the US, so my parents opted to sign us up for two synagogue Seders. Rather than having a Seder for just the four of us at home, we joined the community and had a large-scale Seder at one of our local synagogues, where we had a sumptuous meal in a lively atmosphere. We enjoyed it so much that we remained in Montreal every Pessah from then on and attended communal Seders.
In that vein, for those who don’t want to make the Seder at home or for visitors who want to share the experience with a larger public, here are some of the Seder options being offered around town. At press time, there was still space available at these venues.
Crowne Plaza Hotel
The Crowne Plaza Hotel is having one Seder, which costs NIS 550 per person. There is no rabbi or cantor officiating at the sit-down dinner, but each family is provided with a traditional Seder plate at their table and conducts the Seder on their own. Jerusalem Rabbinate. With kitniyot.
Rehov Ha’aliya 1, Givat Ram Tel: 658-8888
Dan Panorama Hotel
The Dan Panorama is offering two Seders. On the first night, guests can choose to have their Seder in the hotel dining room with a cantor officiating or have a more private Seder experience in a different room and perform the Seder on their own with others who are doing the same. Either sit-down dinner option costs NIS 750 per person. The second Seder is a buffet that costs $130 plus VAT per person. Jerusalem Rabbinate, no kitniyot.
Rehov Keren Hayesod 39, Tel: 569-5623
Inbal Hotel
The Inbal is having two Seders. For the first Seder, guests can choose to have the sit-down dinner in the dining room with a cantor or conduct their own Seder in another room with other families. The price per person for either option is $225 plus VAT. The second Seder, with or without a cantor, is $125 per person. In all cases, there is a 50% discount for children aged three to 13. Glatt kosher, no kitniyot.
Rehov Jabotinsky 3, Tel: 675-6692
28 King David
The new events venue 28 King David is hosting one Seder at NIS 590 per person. Children under three eat for free, while kids aged three to 13 have 30% off. Under the auspices of an Ashkenazi cantor, the sitdown Seder will accommodate a maximum of 80 to 90 people in the restaurant fronted by a lovely garden. Mateh Yehuda Regional Council, Rabbinate, no kitniyot.
Rehov David Hamelech 28, Tel: 623-4460
King Solomon Hotel
The King Solomon is hosting two Seders. Led by a cantor, each Seder costs NIS 450 per person. Glatt mehadrin, no kitniyot.
Rehov David Hamelech 32, Tel: 569-5500
Mamilla Hotel
The Mamilla Hotel is having one Seder, led by a cantor. The meal, served buffet style in the dining room, costs $240 per person, with a 25% discount for children aged three to 12. Jerusalem Rabbinate. No kitniyot.
Rehov Shlomo Hamelech 11, Tel: 054-310-0902 (Mamoun)
Moreshet Israel Synagogue (Conservative)
Moreshet Israel is hosting one Seder, conducted in English with Haggada readings in Hebrew, at the synagogue’s guest house on the campus of the Fuchsberg Center. The cost for the sit-down dinner is NIS 375. For children under 12, it is NIS 250. Mehadrin, no kitniyot.
Rehov Agron 6, Tel: 625-3539
Mount Zion Hotel
The Mount Zion is hosting two Seders. The first costs NIS 842 per person and the second is NIS 434. There is a 20% discount for children aged three to 12. Jerusalem Rabbinate, no kitniyot.
Derech Hebron 17, Tel: 568-9555
Prima Kings Hotel
The Prima Kings is having one Seder, conducted by a rabbi. The cost is NIS 550 per person. For children under 12, the cost is NIS 350 per child. Glatt kosher. 60 King George Avenue, Tel: 620-1202