Welcome to the “Walled Off Hotel,” the hotel with “worst view in the world.” Please be mindful of the million-dollar art on the walls.
By Russell Goldman / The New York Times
March 3, 2017
The elusive British street artist Banksy has decorated the interiors of the Walled Off Hotel, a nine-room guesthouse in the West Bank city of Bethlehem whose windows overlook the barrier that separates the territory from Israel.
Among the rooms decorated by the artist, who has earned a following for tagging walls around the world with witty illustrations and dark political commentaries, is the “Banksy Room.”
In the room, a mural on the wall above a king-size bed depicts a Palestinian and an Israeli locked in combat — only they are having a pillow fight.
Banksy, who rarely comments on his work and keeps his real identity a secret, has made trips to the West Bank for years and has previously, under cover of night, painted the barrier itself. On a recent trip, he painted a mural on the barrier, just steps from his current project, showing a girl being pulled aloft by balloons.
Last year, four street murals in Gaza were attributed to him, including one depicting a Greek goddess amid the rubble of a destroyed house.
In addition to the guest rooms, Banksy has created something of a museum that includes surveillance cameras mounted like taxidermic trophies, a Grecian bust surrounded by a cloud meant to depict tear gas, and a wax statue depicting the signing of the Balfour Declaration, the 1917 letter of British intent to create a Jewish homeland in Palestine.