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Travel Blogs from Istanbul
Sunday, September 22, 2013
We made it to our hotel last night by the skin of our teeth! First, the taxi driver didn't speak a word of English. Second, he didn’t know where our hotel was. Third, he drove up to 110 kph down the busy streets, weaving in and out of traffic, like he was invincible! He phoned a friend while driving and …
After an email from the Australian Embassy via Smart Traveller, we decided to stay at the hotel today due to possible May Day violence in Kadikoy Square where we are staying, and Taksim Square, where we would definitely be avoiding. Streets were blocked and public transport was stopped in case of any problems. We could clearly hear the protestors from our hotel. It seemed to be a mixture of ...
... and significance of numerology, astrology, ect that exist in many religions such as Hinduism, Islamic, Judaism and Christianity. It was really so overwhelming that I need to go back and listen to the video that I recorded to try and sort it all out. If you ever plan on going, I highly recommend a tour guide. It was worth the few extra dollars.
After the tour he took us for tea which "happened" to be in a carpet store. It was our first time having apple tea ...
At the Dolmabahce Palace (30 TL), we spent well over an hour waiting in 3 lines (security, tickets, entrance). There is only a 40 minute guided tours (no self-guided wanderings). The palace was inhabited by six Sultans from 1856 until the 1920s. After the decline of the Ottoman empire, Ataturk used it as a temporary residence and even died here. It is divided into two halves, one for administration and one for living (the harem). Both ...
... transition from Soviet Socialism to a somewhat more open economy controlled by him, his two daughters, and his best Israeli friend. While these four people have grown to be four of the richest in the world, average Qazaqs have clearly benefited enormously as well. And people like the man, if for no other reason that he has steered the country away from the ethnic violence that seemed to loom over it twenty years ago, when the ...
How has this hotel rated in the past?
Historical Traveler Reviews Sultanhan Hotel Istanbul
Great location, clean rooms
Stayed here 3 nights in December. As our baggage was lost through Turkish Airlines, the staff was extremely helpful in contacting the airlines for us. This was no small task as our lugguge had been sent to Barcelona! Having native Turkish speakers to help in a situation like this was invaluable! We did get our luggage back. The staff was so kind and friendly - they were genuinely interested in our comfort and also to help in any way. The manager walked us to an eyeglass store and explained (in Turkish) about our luggage and that our daughter's eyeglasses and contacts were lost in Barcelona! The eyeglass store gave us a discount and hurried to prepare a pair of glasses for our daugher.
I suppose the fact that we were one of only maybe 4 guests at the time gave the staff extra time to help us, but I think they were just terrific and most likely in the busy season would be just as helpful.
The rooms were nice (not as large as the pics on the website look like), and the bathrooms were nice as well. There was one thing that bothered me - the staff elevator was right next door to our room and it made a humming noise ALL NIGHT. My husband didn't notice, though. If you are sensitive to noise then ask for a room away from the staff elevator. Breakfast was good and had nice views on a pretty day. I think especially in warm weather the terrace would be a lovely place to have breakfast.
Location, Location, Location!
I booked this hotel over others after reading the rave reviews! I can confirm that this hotel is fabulous. The location is great for all sights, the harbour and the tram, you hardly need step just up the road to be at the Blue mosque or bazaar. The staff were amazing, humourous, engaging, delightful.... need I go on. Orham on reception sorted restaurants, maps, directions, turkish baths, transfers, everything. The restaurant food is exceptional, much better and cheaper than some of the 'posh' restaurants and Ali the Restaurant Manager is a gem. He even took one of our group off the the barbers for a shave! He gave us an insight into real turkish life whilst we were waiting for our meal. The rooms are spacious, clean and bright. I could not fault this hotel, I would recommend it to anyone and when i return to istanbul, it will be to this hotel again. Marianne, Bristol England
Love Hotel Sultanhan
Rather than be repetitive let me just say that I concur with all the positive comments written about this gem of a hotel to this point. I took 15 other people to the hotel with me for 2 nights after our 12-night cruise. As a travel agent I was apprehensive about Turkey and the hotel. I had never traveled to Turkey and I wanted to make sure I satisifed the needs and expectations of my well-traveled group. I couldn't have been more pleased and my group was delighted. The hotel looks exactly like the website so what you see is what you get. If you haven't checked out the website you should; they have done an amazing job. I had a problem with the airconditioning that was fixed very quickly. The controls are unlike those I am used to so it was probably something I needed to do to make it work. For breakfast I would like to see them make some improvements but it is enough to get your day started. Last, but certainly not least, the staff could not have been more helpful or gracious. We really enjoyed our stay in Istanbul and would stay at this hotel again and again.
Fabulous little hotel in old town
Just stayed one night at the Hotel Sultanhan in Istanbul after our Greek Isles cruise - when the cab driver couldn't find the place, I started to get worried, thinking what kind of dump was this I got us into! When we arrived, we were thrilled. It is a small boutique hotel located within a very short walking distance of the Grand Bazaar and Blue Mosque. A delightful staff, a rooftop terrace for dining with beautiful views of the Bosphorus and Mosque. Another short walk and you are on the tram to anywhere you want to go in either old town or the new town.
Couldn't have been happier with the spot.
Good, comfortable hotel
Good location, with the attractions in Sultanhamet near by. The reception was a good size and you get the feeling you have entered a classy hotel from the minute you step through the door.
Good size bedrooms (though AC is suspect). Rooms can be a little dark and gloomy so ask one that has a lot of light. Breakfast is on the terrace and was pretty good. Staff at reception need to smile more.
Hotel was a little more expensive than your standard tourist 3* hotels, but in my view definitely worth paying a little more. The difference in your standard tourist hotels and this hotel is there to see.
Restaurant was a little expensive (like most restaurants in the area), but nice food.
Overall, the hotel was better than average.
Recommended - yes.
Would I return - probably!
The best location possible
We made our booking for this hotel based purely on price rather than other factors and was fully expecting the need for taxi's to get anywhere. I was completely wrong!
The hotel is in the best location you could possibly find. The Grand Bazaar is right around the corner (less than 5 mins stroll) and the Blue Mosque, Hagia Sofia, Cistern, Topkapi (all the main sites) are about 5-7 mins stroll away.
The rooms are lovely, with a proper King-sized bed (not 2 beds pushed together), breakfast was adequate (I've had better, but there was enough to fill me up each morning) and the service good.
I did find the night staff did not speak too much English, but they spoke enough to help with any query.
The Spa is okay - you have to book ahead for treatments as the therapist comes in specially. The Turkish Bath (Hammam) experience is excellent and you have to try the soap massage (what that woman can do with some soapy water and a pillow cover is amazing), but the rest of the treatments are slightly dissapointing (the massage table is in the same room as the lockers and the doors to the sauna and hammam (so not very relaxing if you do your treatments in a group as we did).
I would definately stay there again when visiting Istanbul.
Excellent hotel and excellent location with nice folks
my wife and I stayed at this excellent hotel for our first visit (3 nights) to Istanbul, and were very pleased. Location is ideal for the major sites; room comfortable and quiet (except when the neighboring room screamed at and possibly hit their baby). The view from the roof is spectacuar, expecially at sunrise. restaurant food and service was excellent, but meals in the neighborhood weremore fun. Desk clerks were kind and helpful. Well worth staying at!
A great hotel in the old section of Istanbul
After searching the web for days to find a hotel that offered location and style that would compliment the old section of Istanbul, I found the Sultanhan. My husband and I stayed six nights at this lovely boutique hotel May 9-15. It is a fairly new hotel decorated with antiques and beautiful fabrics and carpets. Much care has gone into the decorations and furnishings, as well as the comfort of the rooms. The bedding is luxurious and of the highest quality.
The owners own a wonderful carpet store next to the hotel that is filled with delightful antique carpets and wall hangings. We enjoyed having apple tea and learning about the antique designs of some of the most beautiful carpets that I have ever seen!
Buffet breakfast is served on the top floor overlooking the Aya Sophia , Blue,Mosque, and the Bosforus. What a beautiful way to start the morning! The service was superb and the omlets and pasteries delicious. The hotel is situated in a quiet area, and our room had a balcony overlooking the street. We opened the doors off the balcony in the evenings and enjoyed hearing the evening calls to prayer. An unforgetable way to experience the history of Istanbul!
The hotel also offers a "turkish bath" with extra services such as salt scrub and smoothing oil treatments., as well as massages. What a unique and relaxing experience.!