Habima is one of the oldest cultural institutions in Tel Aviv, and perhaps the city's premier institution. The national theatre, an outstanding symbol of Hebrew culture, serves as a source of pride for the city of Tel Aviv-Yafo, the cultural hub of the state of Israel. Its standing as the cultural capital was attained thanks to Habima, the thriving cultural institutions within the city, and the artists living and creating in it. Yet the city doesn't only revel in the successes of its cultural ambassadors, but rather takes responsibility for their existence and is genuinely committed to their prosperity.
In the new season of plays at Habima, the theatre will return to its original, renewed venue. From the day its cornerstone was laid in 1935 to this very day, Habima has been transformed over and over again. Yet during each and every one of its many transformations, Habima theatre remained the most important cultural anchor in the city's cultural life.
The municipality of Tel Aviv-Yafo views the preservation and promotion of the city as Israel's leading cultural center as being of great importance, and perceives this as a national service. The renovation and renewal of Habima are part of the municipality's policy over recent years to rejuvenate the city's historic assets (the boulevards, cultural institutions, seashore, promenade, the White City and more).
As part of the renovation, Habima underwent structural and aesthetic changes designed to allow a wide range of options that will enable it to meet the demands of a contemporary and progressive theatre.
The theatre's original pillars, that underwent all of the buildings transformations, were exposed and they now provide the public with a peek into the history of Tel Aviv.
The new structure complies with international standards of quality and provides the veteran institution with proper accommodations for the national theatre; a suitable venue which is elegant and contemporary, that will amplify Habima's special charm and enable expression of the diverse talents of those working within it and the theatre's repertoire.
The structure houses four halls:
Rovina Hall – the main hall
Bartonov Hall (also known as Habimartef), that looks like a Greek arena with concrete tribunes
Experimental theatre – a small, bar shaped hall
Displayed in the lobby are works by the late Uri Lifshitz – portraits of the theatre's founders: Hanna Rovina, Yohoshua Bartonov, Aharon Meskin and others.