Neighborhood and Hotel history

The hotel is located in Baka neighborhood  in the southern part of the city.
The neighborhood was first founded on the 19th century around 1882, when the railroad tracks to Jerusalem were laid.  The name  “Baka” in Arabic means “soil mixed with pebbles”.
Near the old railway station in a vast plain, simple houses were established and were populated by the workers of the train station. A few years later, these houses were demolished and replaced with foundations for an organized and spacious neighborhood.
One by one houses were built in the neighborhood which later became one of the most beautiful neighborhoods of west Jerusalem. These were two-story buildings; parents lived on one floor and their children on the other. A few years later began an influx of affluent and educated families with means. This combination created houses that their external as well as inner designs were a mixture of two cultures, east and west. Baka houses were characterized by well-kept wide entrances , large designed balconies , big rooms and hallways.
Until the outbreak of the War of Independence in 1948, Baka was populated by approximately 1,200 Muslim and Christian  families.
The neighborhood was abandoned during the war and towards the end ,when the fighting ended in late 1948, it was settled by Jewish evacuees from the old city.
Baka (Geulim in Hebrew) is characterized by beautiful green landscape along it’s streets as well as several public gardens that add to the special green nature of this neighborhood
The hotel was built in the 20th century by a Wealthy Christian family from Beit Jala named Abu Raas. This family built several other houses in the German Colony neighborhood.This Ottoman-style building was built using a strong and expensive red dolomite stone, named “mizzi Ahmar”   in Arabic.
This unique stone was used to build most of the houses in the neighborhood and is an inseparable part of the neighborhood’s character.  
Following the War of Independence, the Abu Raas family fled back to Beit Jala  which was under Jordanian control.
Over the years the building was used among other things as a school, orphanage home and a hostel for girls.
The building was sold in an auction  in the late  90’s to  private hands and is used ever since as Little house in Bakah hotel.
The Jerusalem Municipality has prepared a comprehensive plan to preserve the historic and aesthetic character of the neighborhood.
The hotel structure itself was declared “for strict Preservation” by the Preservation Council.