Here Come The Chinese!
Israel's hotels are making a mental and operational switch in the realization that the Chinese tourist has obviously placed Israel prominently on his map of destinations. 100,000 Chinese citizens are projected to visit Israel this year and their numbers are expected to continue to increase.
In preparation of this influx, the Israel hotel industry is sending their staffs to specially tailored courses. Participants are taught how to bow correctly in order to pay respect. Reception staff learns about the cultural differences: The Buddhist swastika symbol, adorning our Chinese guests' objects and clothing is a lucky charm protecting from evil and attracting good, representing natural order, wealth, desire, and liberation. The numeral 4 is perceived as negative, so room number four and rooms on the fourth floor should not be allocated to them.
Curriculum, of course, also includes culinary preferences and guides hotel staff to offer water at room temperature, even on a hot day, and be sure to always have hot water available for preparing green tea.
Thus we are laying the foundation to this friendly and welcome influx.