Roza Sinaysky is a busy woman. Between running her own lifestyle blog Moody Roza, regularly contributing to Elle Russia, and playing proud tour guide to a revolving door of international visitors, she has generously made time to share her travel tips for her vibrant home-town, Tel Aviv, with us. From where to find this bustling Mediterranean capital's most exotic fresh produce to the must-visit women-only club, to the perfect pamper spot, Roza's insider's guide for Tel Aviv is one to keep on file.
How would you explain the lifestyle, culture and essence of Tel Aviv?
When it comes to Tel Aviv, there is one ideal place that combines the spirit of our Mediterranean nature and our passion for all things yummy. The Carmel Market is the best place to feel (and taste) the fresh and vibrant nature of our town. You will find tonnes of exotic fruits you may have never tried before, local delicious (and cheap) stuff like falafel, burekas and lots of grilled meat and fish. It’s also the perfect spot to get those typical souvenirs everyone expects you to bring back. If you are strolling around the market you must also visit the Yemeni Quarter, one of the oldest and most authentic neighbourhoods in Tel Aviv. If you can’t get enough of this place, you have the option to stay at the Peer Hotel and explore the area in a more detailed manner.
Tell us about the Tel Aviv beaches...No doubt that when you visit Tel Aviv, the first thing you want to do is head to the beach right away. If it’s your first time in town then you should know that our strip is very diverse; the North part is a slightly more international - you’ll find a great deal of French speakers and other sun-loving tourists like yourselves. Every beach has its own crowd, so much so that there is even a dog beach where you can have a dip with your pup. Gordon Beach is my favourite. It is the youthful one and always full of yummy surfers. Nearby you can find Gordon pool and a very useful and popular gym. Tel Aviv’s Marina is also around the corner, so if you are up for chilling on a yacht this is the place to do it.
Nok Beauty; Fiori Florist
What is your ultimate beauty destination?
Nok Beauty - every woman in the world is sharing the same problem when getting ready for an event, preparing yourself to look your best is a pricy and time consuming effort. You go to the hair dresser, get your nails done, wait until they dry and do your make up. In other words, in order to reach the perfect grooming result you must sweat, stress and pay too much. Now, there is one super chic for all your beauty needs and it is affordable. Nok Beauty is offering a package of mani, pedi, make up and hair blow dry/styling.
Roza Sinasky; Hotel Montefiore
Must-visit cultural hubs?
Tel Aviv is not known for being the most glamorous of cities; it can get really gritty and noisy, but you just have to remember that it’s all part of this town’s charm. You won’t find manicured lawns in front of fancy buildings, but you will find some impressive Bauhaus architecture on every corner. No building looks the like the other, a fact that makes the “White City” so interesting and diverse. There are over 400 Bauhaus influenced buildings in Tel Aviv, built in the early years of Israel to date by architects who emigrated from Europe and were influenced by this German method. A lot of these buildings are protected by UNESCO and are being renovated to be brand spanking new as we speak.
What is something you love to indulge in?
Nine Rooms - this is an exclusive ladies members club located in the ancient allies of Jaffa and it is one lavish place. Nine Rooms was created by women, for women. It is by far the best place in town for meeting like-minded women who are professional, ambitious and fashion-savvy. When you become a member of Nine Rooms you will enjoy some serious pampering. It will start with beautiful ladies in maids uniforms bringing all-you-can-eat cakes and macaroons, and will end with a special Carita facial treatment and a personalised manicure.
Coola - a women for women spa, Coola is part of the Comme ill Faut brand. It is located in the port of Tel Aviv and has a captivating view of the sea. Besides for the fact it offers relaxing treatments like facials and massages you may also have your mani-pedi done and, what do you know, you can also read a book while at it! I am sure this all sounds wonderful to every girl out there but what is more wonderful is the new concept Coola came up with lately: the spa has become an official 'no phone zone', which means you are completely disconnected during your time at the spa, no whatsapp, no facebook chat and yes, no instagram! Your phone is deposited in a safe before you enter the spa and you may only reunite with it when you leave.
Fiori - more than just a regular flower shop, Fiori is a universe of plans, unique flowers, objects of desire and most of all great energy. The new store in Neve Tzedek is a jungle of plans, exotic flowers and mystic vibes. The store is small but once you walk in there’s no way out, the magic of it just sucks you in. Sagi Samila and Shabi Sarusi who own the store created Fiori out of true passion for high quality product, they wanted to bring a luxury twist on the local event, garden and flower industries in Israel, combining elegant flower arrangements for the most chic result.
Wall art in Tel Aviv
Best places to stay?
The Drisco Hotel - the story of The Drisco is what makes this hotel so special. Located in the revived American-German Colony neighbourhood, with it’s sophisticated hip ambiance of the Drisco lounge bar, the rooftop bar, a private garden, and a gym. Highly recommending to have your breakfast outside in the beautifully designed garden filled with mediterranean tiles that are so perfect for your feed!
The Vera Hotel - in the heart of the city, Vera Hotel is the perfect escape from the hectic Tel Aviv life, with a minimalistic design that will help you cool off in style from a sizzling heat of the streets.This 39-room boutique hotel offers each guest a stunning hospitality experience –plush rooms, a rooftop sundeck, a lively bar, personalised customer service and much more.
Setai - only a little over a decade ago this was a prison. Fast forward to 2019 and it's a luxury hotel with a spectacular rooftop, beautiful pool and a chef restaurant.
The Jaffa Hotel - by far one of the most impressive hotels in Tel Aviv (actually it's in Jaffa), it took over 10 years to construct this 19th century children's hospital that has now turned into a luxury hotel. The Jaffa has a pool, an amazing Italian restaurant, and a bar under the name "Chapel" (yes, it really was a chapel turned into a very slick bar). This hotel is a must visit, if you won't stay here for a night at least chill in the patio for a few hours. You'll be surrounded by inspiration and history.
The Norman Hotel - I kept hearing about this hotel before it was opened; it was in the making for several years and my anticipation for this hotels opening grew every time I passed by the construction site. This is one of the most spectacular hotels I’ve seen; the Norman Hotel was even voted one of the most Instagramable hotels of 2015 by Refinery29, and that, my friends, counts for a lot these days! The Norman Tel Aviv is a fusion of 1920s elegance situated at the heart of Tel Aviv in two historic buildings, superbly restored to their unique architectural heritage. I am pretty sure that many of you would like to move in here, or at least stay for a few days but can’t afford to - don’t despair! As you are always welcome for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The Norman has two exquisite restaurants and a cocktail bar so you can easily enjoy the hotel without blowing your life savings.
What's your perfect day in Tel Aviv?I like to take my relaxation seriously, so I go to the one place I know I’ll be able to truly be pampered. That place is Hotel Indigo. Whenever I decide that it’s my “Indigo time” (like on my recent birthday for instance) I know I am going to be spending the day in complete zen. Start with an endless breakfast at the Blackstone bistro, continue to the pool to enjoy the spectacular view of Tel Aviv, then move to a massage at the Clarity Spa, and finish the day with a glass of wine at the bar. Now if that doesn’t sound like the perfect day, I don’t know what is.
Left: Roza Sinasky, Right: Fiori Florist
Best dining spots in town?
It’s no secret that Tel Aviv is becoming a top culinary destination and a vegan Mecca to many foodies around the globe.
Ca Phe Hanoi - a multi-sensory culmination of culinary expertise, innovative design, and a carefully curated menu of traditional Vietnamese food with emphasis on French and Israeli influences. Ca Phe Hanoi was founded on the desire to merge the two very unique cultures of Vietnam and France to create a culinary experience unlike any other. Fresh, locally sourced ingredients are paired with traditional and refreshing flavours, imported directly from Vietnam in a kitchen based on passion, fire, colour, and a lot of joy. and most important fact, it's Kosher! Ca Phe Hanoi, Israel
Hotel Montefiore - the classic-can't-go-wrong restaurant, a local legendary bar/restaurant... you can't never go wrong here. The atmosphere is electric any time of day, the food is fantastic and you will always make new stylish friends here. This restaurant is part of a boutique hotel which also be on top of your list!
Dinings Restaurant - a world-renowned restaurant in London, which now has a home in Tel Aviv and offers a very tempting business menu.
Anita Ice Cream - as you know it gets really hot around here, so hot that your feet will find their own way to this place - the best ice cream in town that it is. No further introductions are needed for this place, I’ll just let the 50 flavours of insanely delicious ice cream speak for itself.
Anita Ice Cream, Shabazi
Falafel HaKosem - in a simple translation “The Magician’s Falafel”. This place has been around for almost two decades and has never lost its (well…) magic. This vibrant spot has a lot more to offer than just balls of falafel in a pitta. The menu is vegan and veggie friendly, and I guarantee you won’t be able to stop at one dish. Try the house lemonade with your lunch and enjoy the well-presented staff.
Caffé Ben Gurion - one of the best people-watching spot in town as well as a great place to have your coffee and mingle. What started as a pastry and sandwich café turned into a super popular Asian-fusion stand. Make sure you are not in a rush when you get there as you can engage in long conversations with passers-by and make new friends while sipping on your udon.
Tamara - nothing beats a colourful cup of freshly squeezed juice; they know that very well at Tamaras. Get your daily vitamins at any of their branches around town - the one on Dizingof is my favourite.
Humus Meshausha - you already know that humus is our trademark, now you need to choose where to have it. There are so many debates over where the best humus in town is and I refuse to decide. Humus Meshausha on Bugrashov is more then fine for me! Don’t let the little plate mislead you, this is one hell of a filler.
Miznon - I know it sounds dramatic but I just can’t live without the food this place has to offer. Whenever I’m away I dream of being reunited with the sweet potato and chicken liver in a pitta. Legendary chef Eyal Shani’s philosophical yet simplified food will get you hooked in no time. If it’s your first time, be aware of a few things... (1) There are no plates in this place and your food will be served to you on a cardboard. (2) It’s noisy and that’s on purpose. The staff like to sing and dance and play their music real loud. In other words, you’ll be back for more the next day.
Dallal Bakery - this bakery will keep pastry lovers on their toes; this will be your perfect “cool down” coffee break in the shadows and away from the heat. At this point you are a few steps from the beach, so hang in there!
What are your favourite precincts or neighbourhoods?
Neve Tzedek is a full-of-colour village - it’s the first place I send all my visitor friends to. Being the first neighbourhood to be built in Tel Aviv it has a “run-down” charm, although in the last decade Neve Tzedek became a desirable real estate hub and a top shopping destination. I always recommend to start the tour from the Ehad Ha Am end, and walk down Shabazi street until you hit the beach. The rest will be discovered along the way when you get a little lost in the allies and little streets.
Stay - if you refuse to leave Neve Tzedek and want to spend your vacation wondering around the Mediterranean alleyways then you should consider staying at the Varsano Hotel.
Eat - the Dallal bakery will keep pastry lovers on their toes; this will be your perfect “cool down” coffee break in the shadows and away from the heat. At this point you are a few steps from the beach, so hang in there!
See - Israel is a top destination for contemporary dance fanatics. Our national pride is the Suzan Dalal dance group who is making quite the impression outside our little land. The headquarters and the dance school are located in Neve Tzedek. Not only the building architecturally breath-taking, but also functional as a theatre where you can watch live performances.
You can find Roza on Instagram at @moodyroza.