The Gaza Strip’s Beautiful New Resort

Talk about an oxymoron.

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For decades, we’ve seen the Gaza Strip as unstable, effectively a war zone, and the U.S. Department of State has warned U.S. citizens “against travel to the Gaza Strip.” So, you’ll have to understand why the manicured lawns and seaside promenades of Gaza’s newly opened Blue Beach Resort, which sits almost directly next to a refugee camp and not far from commonly bombed neighborhoods, take us by surprise.

The resort along the Mediterranean boasts a private beach and 162 chalet-style rooms—though only 76 are currently open—at $100-$160 per night.

But this opening didn’t come without hardship. Construction was supposed to conclude last year, until the 50-day war halted progress. Today the image looks brighter, and, while much of Gaza suffers with power cuts, Blue Beach continues to shine through the night, and, for some Palestinians, that’s a symbol for hope.

Perhaps expectedly, the resort opening has become a source of pride for many Palestinians. The hotel’s Facebook page has already garnered 20,000 Likes.

Tell us with a tweet or in the comments section below, would you go on a beach getaway to Gaza?

Tom Burson is a travel writer, part-time hitchhiker, and he’s currently trying to imitate Where in the World is Carmen San Diego but with more sunscreen and jorts.

Photo via blue.beach.resort, CC-BY

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