Making aliyah to Israel in July, 2005 from Los Angeles, Yosef and Micki Gersht came directly to Safed. They brought their three sons, transplanted their lives and fulfilled a dream. Back in L.A., Yosef was a renovator and builder. Micki spent many years running a court reporting business as well as being a successful artist. They vacationed often and always sought out unique guest houses and charming boutique hotels.
Yosef secretly dreamed of opening his own boutique hotel, and when he came to Safed, he realized there was great opportunity. Within six months of arriving in Safed, they bought a house and renovated it. They bought another home and yet another.
Within four years, they had eight guesthouses. Yosef was busy with the building and design aspect, overseeing the restoration, tile work and the carpentry. He sought out quality craftsmen to restore the old stone, to create stained glass, and to do woodworking and intricate Safed-style grille work.
Meanwhile, Micki scoured Israel to find top-quality bedding, cozy throws, paintings, and antiques. She stitched many of the curtains by hand and carefully restored old tables, chairs and shutters. Thanks to the Gershts’ careful attention to detail and creative talents, each guesthouse is a masterpiece.
Safed has had many positive influences on Yosef – he has taken up painting and is creating beautiful works of art. Micki creates non-stop, be it composing poetry, making jewelry, hand bags, collages and, most recently, writing a novel.