Eilat could face some competition for tourists headed for Red Sea destinations, when a new Club Med opens in Sinai next month.
Sinai Bay Club Med, scheduled to open during the Hanukkah holiday, is just an eight-minute drive from the Taba border crossing. It is expected to compete for tourists visiting Eilat and the neighboring resort areas, including Aqaba, Jordan.
Over the past few months, the area has been the target of terror warnings and attacks, including a few rockets. Egyptian police have arrested terror suspects in Sinai.
Israelis have been returning to the peninsula despite the warnings: 35,000 of them crossed through Taba into Sinai in September, and nearly 200,000 visited between January and October of this year.
Club Med is building the Sinai site in partnership with an Egyptian company, Orascom Development. It is located near the Taba Heights hotel complex in an area that used to be called Dolphin Bay.
The resort will have four- to five-star facilities and 500 meters of beachfront. It will be one of the few hotels in Sinai with direct access to the bay.
A one-week stay for a family of four will cost NIS 11,400 over Hanukkah, compared with NIS 10,000 at the three-star Coral Beach Club Med in Eilat.
The Club Med in Eilat still has some advantages over its more highly starred Egyptian neighbor; according to its management: it's within Israel and it's kosher.