13 years ago, Eyal Hirschfeld, together with his wife, Avigail, opened the Zimmerbus complex in the Ezuz village, located on the border of the Negev and Sinai. But according to him, it only recently became a national trend.
"Suddenly, they started copying the concept and all sorts of Zimmerbuses sprouted up in other places in the country," he says.
Hirschfeld's complex includes three refurbished old buses that have been converted into luxurious cabins suitable for couples and families. The buses are called: The Couples' Zimmerbus, The Accordion Zimmerbus and The Terminal Zimmerbus.
"On one hand, we preserved the bus aspect; for example, we turned the driver's cabin into a children's playroom, and on the other hand, it's something luxurious, with a heated outdoor pool," he says.
Currently, accommodation does not include meals, but the cabins themselves have fully equipped kitchens, including an espresso machine.
"The place is very upscale, so the prices are accordingly high. It's not intended for people looking for a cheap vacation," Hirschfeld says. "On the other hand, its' not that expensive compared to what's available on the market. You really experience art inside recycled creations. Even tourists from abroad who come here are amazing by what they receive. There are people who come to me from thousands of miles away every yaer for a week."
Across from the Zimmerbuses, guesthouses and hostels are also gaining popularity among Israeli families.
"Due to the high cost of living, people are now looking for accessible alternatives," says Roni Baitan, CEO of ILH - the Israeli Guesthouse and Hostel Community. "The trend of an increase in Israeli visits started during the days of the coronavirus. In the past, when Israeli heard the word 'hostel,' in the best case, they thought of South America, and in the worst case, they thought of a rundown hostel.
"Suddenly, people realized that there is an option for quality accommodation at affordable prices. The less formal atmosphere in these places is also very suitable for the Israeli character."
Thus, in the Abraham Group (Hostels and Tours), they report an increase in bookings compared to last year, especially at Abraham Eilat, the hostel designed for families, where, for example, a room for a couple and three children can be found starting from NIS 750 in July.
"Every year in the summer, we see an increase in the number of Israeli families coming to us," says Naama Shviki, Marketing Manager at The Spot Hotel, a guesthouse in Tel Aviv. "Fortunately, there are those who know today about the guesthouse options throughout the country, which allows for a young, cool vacation at a reasonable price."
The most sought-after destinations abroad
According to Ziv Risen, CEO of the Gulliver Group, Antalya in Turkey is at the top of the list of Israelis' demand for flights this upcoming summer. Antalya, suitable for family vacations with activities indulgences, is also the destination with the highest demand for vacation packages (over 60% of bookings t Antalya are for vacation packages).
In second place is Crete, the largest island in Greece, which is especially loved by Israeli travelers. Apart from being a destination close to many relatively cheap flight options, it also offers a tremendous selection of luxurious hotels, beautiful nature, impressive architecture, inexpensive shopping and lively entertainment venues.
In third place is Rhodes, also a sought-after Greek destination, with plenty of high-level hotels and tourist sites. In fourth place is Batumi, the Georgian beach city that has gained tremendous momentum in recent years among Israeli travelers, with demand increasing by 25% in the past year.
Closing the list of the top five preferred destinations is Larnaca in Cyprus, a 45-minute flight away. It boasts an impressive coastline, its famous salt lake, a pleasant palm-lined promenade, stunning diving sites and good restaurants.
The most talked-about cultural events
Approximately 125,000 tickets were sold at a record speed for the performances of international pop star Bruno Mars, which will take place at HaYarkon Park on October 4th and 7th. Meanwhile, on social networks, one can find countless posts of people looking for someone to sell them a ticket.
Another notable cultural event this summer will be the release of the movie "Indiana Jones and the Fate of the Lost Grail," solely due to Harrison Ford, an 80-year-old [actor] who returns for the fifth time to the role of the archaeologist and legendary hero in the successful and popular film series that began in 1981.
Alongside Ford are film stars Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Antonio Banderas, John Rhys-Davies, Sean Connery and more.
The most popular ice cream flavors
The newest flavor from the LaGenda chain, recently released, is Cruch Cornplex - cornflake-infused ice cream with cornflake crunchies, inspired by the Turkish hit of Nestle ice creams - Crunch in the milk flavor of cornflakes.
In addition to this trend, the new summer hits at LaGenda are Salty Coconut Mango (coconut sorbet with a hint of saltiness and mango), Symphony (white chocolate, salted caramel, hazelnuts and gluten-free cookies), and soon to come, Kefir ice cream (a type of milk-based beverage) with chia seeds and strawberries.
In the "Vanilla" ice cream chain, three flavors will shine this summer: a vegan Bounty ice cream based on rich coconut cream and dark chocolate, wild strawberry sorbet, and lemon-lime sorbet.
In the Golda chain, the summer trend will focus on three new caramel flavors inspired by seasonal fruits: cheesecake with forest fruits caramel, mascarpone with strawberry caramel, and caramel pistachio praline.
According to stylist Liath Ashuri, three main trends will shine in the upcoming summer. "The first is a trend inspired by the world of water, expressed through prints of seashells, items with scales-like details such as fish scales, jewelry, bags, and shoes with motifs of the sea like starfish, pearls, and more," she says.
Another trend is a return to the 90s. "We'll see jackets that come up to the waist with fringes, cushions like in the 90s. Those who want to be fashionable will wear jeans with a slightly wider cut at the bottom," she says.
Another trend is square-cut styles for women, men, and children. "Even the T-shirt for men is made with short sleeves, but relatively long compared to before," she says. "It's possible that the trend of square-cut styles is influenced by the hip-hop world, where everything is worn big, loose, without body-hugging curves."