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Travel Blogs from Istanbul
Yesterday was our last day in Istanbul and we're eargerly looking forward to going home and to seeing our family and our baby girl Godzilla. Not so much looking forward to going to work on Monday morning with a heavy case of jetlag but the carpet requires payment...
We took it easy on Friday, cracked open the map and after breakfast …
Today is the day that all but 65 of the 1250 passengers disembarked in Istanbul, and a similar number of new passengers boarded to begin our twelve night cruise around the Black Sea. Don and I decided to take the day off and relax, so we didn't even get off the ship. I did the laundry with no competition for the machines, we had a latte at the coffee bar, and read our books for a while up in the Horizons lounge on the top deck, where we ...
Note to self...Always check details on Wikipedia prior to writing Blog ! So yesterday I mentioned we went to the Hagia Sofya which I thought was an old Palace..Turns out it was an old Mosque and it wasn't owned by Sofya...Sofya actually meant Wisdom back in the day. There you go I am learning all the time.
Went down the breakfast and sat with Kathryn, the Canadian woman from Vancouver...funny thing she was a teacher !!! I think I ...
... t refuse and she bought one for the bargain price of 10 euros. As this was the start of our day we had to carry the carpet with us all day long. Fortunately it's not too big. After this we managed to stay way from the street sellers and visit the recommended attractions. First was the Blue Mosque. Our first queue of the day and in the rain. The inside of the mosque is similar to a cathedral except it has ornate blue walls and ...
... town by about 12pm and we didn't need to catch the ferry and then the mini bus until 3:30pm so plenty of time to look around and do some shopping. We decided to walk along the promenade first as it had a lovely view back fords Gallipoli and the horse from the movie was in this area. We did the tourist thing and posed with the horsey and then we just enjoyed the sunny walk. We also went to the park that is in front of the waterside fort I mentioned yesterday. The park ...
How has this hotel rated in the past?
Historical Traveler Reviews Hotel Spectra Istanbul
Just back from a week in the Spectra. I have stayed there some three times previously. Weather was sunny during the day but cool at night, so it was a joy to discover that the heating in my room was constantly available.
Initially, I stayed at another hotel in Istanbul reserved through a travel agent. I was to tour Turkey and arrive back at the hotel for one more week before heading back to the U.S. The hotel was filled with smoke (24/7). I decided to change hotels.
I have had the delight of staying at the Spectra Hotel in Istanbul annually for the past 10 years. I discovered it on a walk around the the area of the Blue Mosque and look forward to my yearly return. The rooms are small but charming and well maintained - The owner is the most hospitable gentleman and does every-thing in his power to make a long or short stay simply perfect. A highlight of this hotel - besides is superb location and friendly staff - is the wonderful breakfast served daily on the enclosed top floor. A breakfast with fresh fruit - yoghurt - honey - variety of excellent bread - tea - coffee - cereals accompanied with a view of the Marmaris - Blue Mosque and Aya Sophia!!! Add to this a very affordable room rate and the convenience of being able to confirm a private pick up at the airport upon your arrival to this magical city. This is a treasure - ENJOY -
Best Hotel in Turkey
My wife and I have been booking at this hotel since 2000, every year. Since 1959 we've both been to Turkey two dozen times, with Italy our favorite country. We have stayed in several others and often check out new possibilities, but Sprectra is the best. Excellent management, staff outstanding, lovely rooms like B&B charm. Excellent location with a staff that can't do enough to make the stay enjoyable.
It doesn't make sense that this hotel isn't ranked a five or four. We taken couples from the US for the last two years and since this summer recommended another three couples. All have thanked up.
My wife adds how wonderful the view of the hippodrome and the outstanding breakfasts.
Prof. Tom Gage, CSUC.
Authentic retreat in heart of Old City
Spectra is centrally located in the Old City with amazing views of St Sophia and the Blue Mosque. The rooms are reminscent of the old style-quaint with authentic features, including wood floors, ottoman, and shuttered windows. We visited at the end of Rammadan and were able to enjoy the sights and sounds of the festival from our window. The complimentary breakfast of Turkish foods is served on the terrace with views of the Old City and Marmara Sea. We found the staff to be very helpful and the owner was most gracious in showing us the facility and assisting us in our ventures. If you are looking for an authentic style stay in the heart of town, we recommend Hotel Spectra.
The location of the hotel is very good but the rooms are very small. The beds are tiny and for less money you can find better hotels in the area.
Would not recommend
Stayed here for one night. It will give you a place to rest your head, but not much else, and even then you won't get a peaceful night's sleep (the "call to prayer" begins at 5 a.m. and ends at 10 p.m.). The room was neat but very run down and the bathroom was moderately clean and extremely small. There was a cup for rinsing or putting your toothbrush in that looked like it had never been cleaned. Consistent with earlier comments, the shower leaked water as well. And all of this for the bargain price of over $100 a night. I think there are better, more reasonable hotels in the same area. I would not recommend this hotel.
Here on a weekend stay with my partner and not knowing Istanbul, I opted for a hotel in Sultanahmet. The Spectra seemed to have a great location for an above average price. Being a Best Western, I assumed it would be of a good standard and it was on a list of gay-friendly hotels in the area. It also had a free transfer from the airport.
After touring Kusadasi, Efes, Troy and Gallipoli, I returned to Istanbul for one night - intending to fly out the next afternoon. Tur-Ista travel agency (great agency for tourists!!)had reserved and pre-paid one night for me at the Spectra - and it was perfect.
Another Case of Reality Being Different From The Internet Description
Hotel Spectra in Istanbul, Turkey is a hotel I found on the internet. From the description, location, and pictures, it seemed just what I wanted. And then I arrived there(sigh.)
The room was very, very small and the carpets were dirty. Bed was very uncomfortable. The shower was EXTREMELY small. A flimsy curtain did not keep the water from going out everywhere ..... as a result, the entire bathroom was soaking wet. The water was BROWN, yes, BROWN. I paid $102 U.S. -- absolutely not worth it. Not worth even half of that. Last but not least, I found the staff to be both unhelpful and impolite.
Want to enjoy your stay in Istanbul? Don't stay at Hotel Spectra!