I stayed in Bat Yam to visit a member of my family who lives there. I first tried to book several hotel in the area, but they were either too expensive (I came to Israel at the top of tourist season) or had poor reviews due to their condition or noise. Truth to be said, I did not have too much expectations from that place, but it turned out it was exactly what I was looking for.
1. The place itself: the apartment itself it tiny. But for those who used to stay in cheap hotels in places like Paris this place looks more than adequate, small, but very functional. It has a fridge, kitchenette, hot water, large bed, closet to put my things, some empty drawers in the kitchenette area, TV with cable, large couch that could be converted into second bed and - which is very important these days - a very fast wi-fi Internet. The apartment was clean, with plenty of cleaning supplies provided. Nobody comes to clean it - it is not a hotel, remember - but it worked perfectly for me, as I don't like to be bothered by the cleaning ladies with I'd rater sleep an extra hour or in the bathroom. In Israel, it's very easy to freshen the apartment - just need to swipe the tiled floor with a cleaning cloth or towel, which were provided.
2. Service: they offered to send a driver to meet me at the airport. It is slightly more expensive than taking a cab (cab costs 150 shekels and a driver 200 shekels, about 10 dollars difference), but it's worth taking for the first time comers, as it brings you straight to the apartment and arranges with the apartment manager to bring you keys. The only small 'snafu' was that the driver did not hold a sign with my name, as was promised, but the name of the company he was representing. But I managed to figure it out. Once the manager, a pleasant Russian lady gives you the keys and explains what and where, nobody will bother you, unless you have some problem. When you check out, you just leave the keys on the table. The service is very fast, when needed: on the first night the AC remote in the bedroom did not have batteries, the first thing next morning a lady brought and installed them. On another instance, I needed fresh towels and within half an hour another lady put them on my door. Very impressing, indeed.
3. The location: the apartment located on the quiet street, but very close (a few hundred yards) to the wonderful beach and promenade full of cafe shops, bars and good restaurants. There are lot of people on the promenade, especially in the evening time, so have an advantage of living on the quiet street, but very close to the place of 'action.' Right to the house with apartment there are plenty of grocery stores and supermarkets along with a fruit/vegetable store (you hardly can find such fruits and vegetables in the States) and a store selling various household goods. Many supermarkets and groceries open until very late (about 1 am) and some even stay open 24 hours. There are several bus stops nearby that can take you to any place in Tel Aviv and even in Israel. I would recommend to upload the Google Maps app to your 'smart phone'. Put there your location and where you need to go and it will tell you which bus you should take and from where, to which bus you will need to change, etc. Very convenient! And taxicabs are available everywhere.
In short, if you want to spend good vacation on the budget, without wasting too much money for expensive hotels and still to have a good time I strongly recommend this location.
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