Orthodox Join Growing Israeli Trend of Spending Yom Kippur in Hotels

Resort villages in Galilee and Golan open on the Day of Atonement expect 60 percent occupancy.

Israelis in growing numbers, including the Orthodox, are choosing to spend Yom Kippur in hotels and inns.

A Haaretz study shows that resort villages in the Galilee and the Golan Heights which will be open on the Day of Atonement this Wednesday night and Thursday are reporting an average of 60 percent occupancy.

Inns and kibbutz resort villages are to serve pre-fast meals in the late afternoon hours Wednesday, and meals to break the 25-hour fast on Thursday night.

Heavy popular demand has spurred Marom Golan to depart from past practice and to open its inn rooms and new cabins for Yom Kippur this year. "There will be no possibility of getting meals or to barbecue in the area of the kibbutz or the guest house," said Marom Golan tourism manager Eran Glick.

"Considering the pace of reservations, occupancy will be high," he added.

Occupancy is to be full at the Ein Gev resort village on the shores of the Kinneret. Ein Gev's Susita Beach facility is to be open as well during Yom Kippur, but its kiosk will be closed.

"The entire year round we host families from the National Religious sector, alongside secular families, and so it is with the Yom Kippur break, during which we offer a synagogue and convenience in getting through Yom Kippur," said Galilee tourism group chairman Meir Levy, head of the Golan resort village.

"This year will mark the 30th time that a group of yeshiva students and the yeshiva's rabbi will be coming to observe the Yom Kippur prayers at a kibbutz synagogue, along with the members of the kibbutz and guests of the inn," Levy said.

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