“Tel Aviv, Israel, was and always will be the place where my soul relaxes,” says designer Nili Lotan. “When I’m in my city, my days are filled with endless inspiring encounters—meeting interesting people, visiting new architecturally astounding spots, and going back to the familiar, beautiful places that remind me of my childhood.” It is these experiences, in contrast with the fast-paced life she also leads in New York City (she and her husband David divide their time), that inform her fresh and functional aesthetic. “It’s one of the most surprisingly vibrant and fresh cities on the global map,” she tells us.

For further convincing, scroll through Lotan’s beautiful photos to see why the other “city that never sleeps” never ceases to inspire.

A world cultural heritage site by UNESCO, Tel Aviv is one of the richest cities in Bauhaus architecture and has been proclaimed The White City.

During the 1930s, newly arrived European immigrants brought the German Bauhaus architectural style with them. The clean urban lines were adapted to the Mediterranean climate, resulting in a cityscape of white buildings framed by the sea.

The Tel Aviv Museum of Art is almost undoubtedly one of the greatest museums of modern art in the world.

Built on white coastal sand dunes, it was meant to be the Mediterranean seaside city of “White Houses.”

The gorgeous marina.

The beach view is the most unpretentious and authentic space for relaxation.

With all of the clean white sand and stunning views of the sea, it’s no surprise that National Geographic rated Tel Aviv as the 9th best beach city worldwide.

The streets of Old Jaffa are filled with artists’ studios, galleries, and restaurants, bringing together shades of the Middle East along with a chic European ambiance.

It is also one of most ancient port cities in the world, mentioned in both the Old and New Testaments.

The flea market in Jaffa is one of the most charming places to walk around.

…or sit and observe. I always stop for a coffee or a bite to eat at Café Puaa.

A sea of treasures await in the market’s interior.

You can find anything from dresses to fabrics to antique tables and chairs to 16th-century doorknobs.

Intricate beads and local pottery are amongst my must-explore items.

This city is also a surprisingly worldly contemporary culinary center. Hotel Montefiore is a restored 1920s heritage building with 12 elegant rooms and a hip restaurant and bar; it’s an oasis of style and luxury.

Much like my current home of New York, this vibrant beach town never sleeps.

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