This week was supposed to see the end of "The State of Things," the inaugural exhibition in Israel's Design Museum Holon, but it has been extended due to "unparalleled visitor interest."

The exhibition will now close on May 22, giving more visitors to Holon, Israel's capital of culture, the chance to see it.

In fact, "unparalleled visitor interest" currently describes Israel at a whole. An improving security situation has driven visitor arrivals in Israel steadily up over the past decade, despite some years that showed slight declines.

Earlier this week, the official tourism ministry said that over a million people visited between January and April 2010, up from 736,000 in 2009.

That means that Israel could break its 2008 record of three million arrivals, which beat the previous 2000 peak of 2.7 million visitors.

Jerusalem

Thirty-five percent of all nights spent in Israel are spent in Jerusalem, according to government figures, making it by far and away Israel's top tourist spot. The hotel offering here is both extensive and well-patronized - Hotel Harmony took top spot ahead of the palatial King David luxury hotel.

1 Harmony
2 The King David
3 American Colony
4 Inbal Jerusalem Hotel
5 Dan Panorama Jerusalem

Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv's location on the seafront makes it a popular tourist destination as well as Israel's economic hub, summed up by American travel writer David Kaufman as "the Mediterranean's new capital of cool." The boutique Art Plus Hotel was the most popular establishment, described as a "clean and modern stay."

1 Art Plus Hotel
2 Sadot Hotel
3 Cinema Hotel
4 Melody Hotel
5 Best Western Regency Suites

Eilat

The Dan Panaroma was the most popular hotel in Eilat, Israel's southernmost city. Guests raved about the hotel's stunning views and proximity to the lively city center.

1 Dan Panorama Eilat
2 Dan Eilat
3 Nova Hotel Eilat
4 Isrotel Royal Beach
5 Herods Vitalis Spa

Dead Sea Region

The Dead Sea region hosts some spectacular hotels and is a popular retreat for both Israeli and foreign tourists. The Lot Spa took top place, with travelers praising its delicious restaurant.

1 Lot Spa Hotel on the Dead Sea
2 Isrotel Dead Sea Hotel and Spa
3 The Masada Hostel
4 Hod Hamidbar Resort and Spa Hotel
5 Spa Club Hotel

Netanya

Netanya offers 14 kilometers of beaches on Israel's north coast and is the fifth most popular destination in the country. The Seasons Hotel, on the beachfront, was praised by visitors for a great location and high standards.

1 The Seasons Hotel
2 Residence Beach
3 King Solomon Hotel
4 Park Hotel Netanya
5 Galil Hotel

Data is taken from millions of independent reviews and rankings surveyed at TripAdvisor taken on May 12, 2010.

Website: http://www.tripadvisor.com

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