The Western Wall is the number one destination in Israel, with approximately 3 million annual foreign visitors. While standing at the Wall, something stirs deep inside.
Aish HaTorah, located at the most prestigious site in Israel, with an entrance directly on the Western Wall Plaza, is uniquely positioned to provide answers – at the moment when people are most open to exploring the meaning of being Jewish.
Our goal is to impart the “why” of being Jewish and to inspire people with a lasting sense of Jewish pride and a desire to learn more.
For 40 years, Aish has been the thought-leader in the field of Jewish education, impacting hundreds of thousands of lives. The Western Wall Experience is a singular opportunity to exponentially increase our impact.
Aish is collaborating with a team of world-class museum designers to develop one of Israel's premier tourist attractions: the Western Wall Experience.
Aish has earmarked half the building – the lower three floors – for a highly-interactive, multi-media, 3-D, total immersion event. The Western Wall Experience explores the epic saga of the Jewish people ("the greatest story ever told"), conveys the Jewish people's unique contribution to civilization, and connects it all to the very spot upon which people find themselves standing, the Western Wall Plaza.
The government of Israel, recognizing the value of this attraction for the Jewish people, and the confidence that Aish has the track record to pull it off, is providing support and assistance.
The centerpiece is a film screening in the Kirk Douglas Theater.
The end of the Experience, on the ground-level floor, is an “Explorium” which includes a café, books to browse, and interactive touch-screens where people can watch videos and sign up for follow-up activities. It is all family-friendly, with a section called the Playground where kids can explore fun Jewish things.
When the Experience ends, visitors exit directly onto the Western Wall Plaza.
Aish anticipates 300,000 visitors annually, making this the most significant construction project on the Western Wall Plaza since 1967.
The Western Wall Experience is geared for visitors of all religions, backgrounds and ages, from anywhere in the world. All exhibits will be fully prepared in English and Hebrew, with secondary languages in the future.
|Entire Building Size||50,000 sq. ft.|
|Interactive Museum Space||16,000 sq ft.|
|Building Excavation, Preservation and Construction||$20 million|
|Western Wall Experience Creation||$20 million|
|Endowment for Operations/Updates||$10 million|
|Annual Visitors||300,000 +|
History of the Site
Built on a series of 3 buildings dating back to the Crusader Period (1065 CE), this site was a gift to Aish HaTorah from the State of Israel, entrusting Aish to exploit the power of this location and build a center that will serve as an inspiration of Jewish pride for people around the world.
Combining excavated elements dating from the Second Temple, the architecture will combine ancient elements discovered through archeological digs on the site, with the most modern finishes and state-of-the-art electronics.