Madelaine Triebe explores the boutiques, bars and beaches of Tel Aviv; Israel’s second largest city and first most fashionable . Tel Aviv, the city of an infinite nightlife and buzzing designer scene, hosted its first ever fashion week last year, leaving a refreshing air of innovation and new thinking to the style world. Young, fashionable, and with no legacy to cater for, the designers set the trademark for the city; a nicely fragranced potpourri of independent designers for anyone who wants a fashion of taste and purchases, free from high street chains and massive purchases malls. Two of the designers showcasing their work were Meital and Rahya Mitrani, siblings unanimously running designer label Sister M. In their studio in Florentine, a bohemian and unpolished neighbourhood, they design their handmade dresses and jewelleries from scratch. The sisters designs clothes for a comfortable and colour-loving clientele, who are always prepared to be surprised by every new collection coming out. According to Meital Mitrani the taste arena in Tel Aviv “is exclusive compared to the rest of the world.” Asking her about what makes it so special she says: “It’s the urban feel of the city and the Israelis’ mix and match approach to taste.” Walking out on the streets of Tel Aviv in neighbourhoods such as Neve Tzedek and Gan Hahashmal, it makes sense what she says. As a thriving hub for many upcoming designers and unique clothing shops, it’s a pleasure to discover the diverse choice. On Barzilay Street there is a vast range of dreamlike boutiques: Delicatessen, Kobico and Nona Elga to point out some of my favourites. Walking one more minute you should aim to end up on Levontin Street and visit Hagar Satat, an Israeli jewellery designer stunningly mixing gold and leather into beautiful accessories. With the refreshing selection of small-scale boutiques you have a great shot of unexpectedly finding something very not many would have heard of back home. Filled with restaurants, an endless amount of al fresco dinning, and a party life that will guarantee a holiday filled with late nights, Tel Aviv has many ways to spoil its guests. Not to forget the kilometre long beaches, running from the north to the south, arranged to host any sunbathing, volleyball-playing, drink-sipping sun-lover. As a visitor this means you are in for a treat when visiting Israel’s style and party capital. Some of the places the city has to provide, though, are not always effortless to find. One of them is Deli, a well-hidden bar on Allenby 47. Passing by the sandwich and salad spot, you’re not likely to believe that you’re standing in front of a sweet hide that, although it has limited space, is both a relaxed bar as well as an intimate club and lounge. The crowd is sleek, hip and grown up, making Deli an genuine Tel Aviv experience. Another great place is the Social Club, a trendy bar and restaurant on Rothschild Boulevard. Always busy, you might have to wait for a table or a stool at the bar, but one time seated by the friendly staff you will end up staying for a long time, sipping in the cheerful and busy atmosphere. Incorporated with the lively metropolis is the city of Jaffa, giving any visitor a great two for one deal. Jaffa, or Yafo in Hebrew, is an Arab-Israeli city thought to have one of the oldest ports in the world. It’s a must-see for anyone who loves the charming ambience of old cities. Dating back to the Bronze Age, or maybe earlier according to some historians, Jaffa has a rich history, stretching from Ancient Egypt to the Biblical period and the Ottoman era. Strolling surrounding in the old city on cobblestone streets, surrounded by brick homes and alleys with a fantastic view above the Mediterranean Sea, it is impossible not to fall in love with it. Pass by the artsy new interior design shops or sit down at one of the unusual restaurants, or why not just go to the famous street bakery Abulafia and have a taste of the sweet pastries and freshly baked pita breads. To make the most of the beautiful sea view go to The Container, a fashionablebar and restaurant, situated at Old Jaffa Port. Although Tel Aviv offers you a grand selection of things to do, don’t forget to take a break and soak in the vibrant atmosphere. To really engross yourself in the culture you have to understand that there is no need to stress. So mix up the purchases-frenzy and late-night clubbing with a bit of coffee sipping on an outdoor caf and you will be just like one of the cosmopolitan, living-loving Tel Avivians that make the city such a unique place. Your Tel Aviv holiday wardrobe May is the hottest period of year to go with median highs of 37C, pack a cool kaftan like the colourful designs by Ceylan Insel Milano. To make to most of the night life, take an elegant evening dress by Meher and Riddhima. The designers are well-known in their domicile land of Dubai for their East meets West womenswear.
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