10 Karaköy, A Morgans Original – Special Class
What We Love
- Stylish conversion of a historic Ottoman-era building
- Contemporary cuisine at the Rudolf restaurant. Octopus carpaccio, anyone?
- The cozy lobby bar has an inviting fireplace and plentiful private hidey-holes
- Within strolling distance of historic attractions and lively restaurants, yet just a tram ride from Sultanahmet’s famous sights
What To Know
- Sultanahmet’s Topkapi Palace and Ottoman mosques are just a short tram ride away, across the Bosphorus
- The tram runs right past the hotel. It can add some street noise, but it's convenient for connections
- The heat and light controls in the guestrooms are futuristic and may require a quick tutorial
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
Stylishly converted from the old Balikli Han, an Ottoman-era trade center, this Morgans Original hotel has a killer location in Istanbul’s hippest ’hood. The interiors have been designed with great aplomb by award-winning architect Sinan Kafadar. In keeping with the shape of the original edifice, suites open off a spectacular central atrium strung with contemporary chandeliers, and there are signature fish designs throughout the public spaces, a nod to to building’s original incarnation (balik means fish in Turkish).
Bed and Bath
The spacious guestrooms come with tons of storage space and feel calm and clutter-free thanks to a soothing fern and cappuccino palette. Modern patchwork rugs top parquet floors, and the sitting areas in the suites feel like cozy living quarters thanks to comfy pastel furniture, well-edited artwork and fresh flowers. The compact bathrooms feature underfloor heating, Malin + Goetz products and turquoise tile shower walls that are Ottomanesque without being over-the-top.
On the street-facing ground floor, the Rudolf restaurant is delightfully decorated with original artwork by Orhan Kurmali. Helmed by Dutch chef Rudolf Van Nunen, the menu offers contemporary cuisine: Black cod, duck and quail all feature prominently, and even the seemingly mundane lemon tart is magically transformed by a to-die-for peach sorbet. In summer a small rooftop bar (with partial views across the Bosphorus to Seraglio Point) serves light meals, also by Rudolf. There’s a small fitness center in the basement, and although there’s no spa on-site, there’s a gorgeous hammam in a restored mosque just down the road.
In the Area
Karaköy is Istanbul’s most happening neighbourhood, jam-packed with inviting one-off cafés and restaurants in narrow back streets that also harbor unexpected 19th-century churches and an underground mosque. The hammam at the glorious, newly restored Kilic Ali Pasa mosque brings spa-style pampering to the once rather rough-and-ready Turkish bath experience. Ferries across the Bosphorus to the Asian side of Istanbul are just a five-minute walk from the hotel; there are superb views of the Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, the Süleymaniye Mosque and the iconic Galata Bridge from the waterfront. Also within walking distance, the Istanbul Modern is a stunning contemporary art gallery.
How to Get There
Stayed three nights at this hotel. Very good location, service and great beds. Will for sure stay here again if the road leads back to Istanbul. Close to the Galata bridge and the nice İstiklal street, and anyway far from the hectic parts of town. Be prepared for a steep hill up to İstiklal.
we had booked a twin room with city view room. The room we were allocated had a view of a wall and the office opposite could see straight into the room. When we questioned the city view Erhan the manager said they do not have any rooms with a city view - the hotel was in the city and we could keep the window closed! Not quite what we wanted to hear. Zero rated customer service and 100% rudeness is all we got from Erhan. Clearly, a member of stall who has no customer relation skills.Will not recomend this hotel to anyone. We ended up calling expedia from the hotel who greatly issued a refund and we left the hotel and checked into another hotel. If it was not for expedia refunding us it would have been a really dreadful trip due to Erhan.
I was thrilled to see that there was a Morgans hotel in Instanbul, which we had booked at short notice due to a surgical procedure my partner was having in the city between Christmas and New Year 2018. We stay in St. Martin’s Lane (London) often and have also stayed at Sanderson and The Mondrian (both also in London). I guess that’s why we had a certain expectation of 10 Karaköy... which was sadly not met.
We checked in at night and was efficiently dealt with. We were shown to our room, which was a Deluxe Queen, one of their highest standard of rooms. The room was decorated nicely but it was so incredibly dark! The lighting in the bathroom was awful, with one solitary overhead spotlight and the lighting feature around the mirror fading (I think it was faulty as it looked like the lighting bulbs were about to expire) so it made getting ready very difficult.
We wanted to get straight out and hit the city so paid a visit to the rooftop bar for drinks. It was completely dead and devoid of any atmosphere (despite the receptionist advising the hotel was fully booked) so this was a real disappointment - we couldn’t wait to get out of there... and that totally ISN’T the vibe we expected for a Morgans hotel bar!
We booked an Uber to take us to our restaurant (the excellent 360 Istanbul) but had it cancelled after after waiting 10 mins. We thought that was odd so booked another. That was then cancelled, too. Five further attempts failed (all cancelled) which we thought was really odd, so we just flagged a yellow cab (not the best for a UK traveller as most drivers don’t speak A WORD of English). We have since realised that the hotel sits on a street that is one way and drivers have to go well out of their way to turn around... and that is why Ubers will cancel and yellow taxis basically throw you out once you tell them your destination (this happened once the morning after, after being picked up outside the hotel). The road the hotel sits on is one way for a very long way and taxis simply don’t want the bother of either going all around the route, or queuing to pick you up. That makes the location of the hotel really bad. Because of the tram line that runs outside, even pedestrians can’t cross the road to explore Karaköy on the other side - there are 1.8m high metal railings that run for miles and cannot be crossed practically or even legally (there are big signs saying it’s illegal to cross the tramway).
This makes it really difficult to get around, especially if you are exploring.
And the tramline was the reason why we had to cut short our stay here. Until late at night and from the crack of dawn, trams run right outside the hotel and only when they weren’t running could we sleep. Our room was at the front of the hotel and the noise is, frankly, ridiculous! We were up past 12 and earlier than 6am because of the noise. After the second night we’d had enough so checked out a day earlier. The hotel management has been kind enough to refund our last night after we complained. We’re usually great sleepers but as my partner was having a surgical procedure, he needed rest and relaxation and I’m afraid we were not going to get that here.
The management have advised we should have raised this issue when staying there - we did, but were told the hotel was fully booked so we couldn’t move to another room (we offered to pay for any upgrade fees due). I recommend anybody staying here request a room NOT at the front of the hotel)
The breakfast buffet was limited, the service throughout was austere. There was a bar at the front of the hotel at street level that was locked and bolted the whole time.
This hotel is an acceptable 4 star but not 5. It feels a little like it’s cutting right back on the full experience (empty/closed bars etc) and isn’t what the Morgans group people had planned it to be. Maybe it’s down to a drop in tourists to the city, I don’t know, but I am afraid it is not a Morgans standard and we were left disappointed.
Hotelis in great location near Galenta Tower and a walk to most major sites.
Hotel staff are good, rooms clean and well appointed.
Breakfast buffet is good with cereal, cold buffet and a small hot section
I was with my husband and mom and stayed at 10 Karakoy for 2 nights. I absolutely loved the hotel and the location.
What was great about the hotel:
1) Very close to the Karakoy tram stop and the Tunel station that gets you up the hill to Galata and also very quickly gets you across the bridge to Sultanahmet area. The concierge will direct you to the kiosk where you can purchase an Istanbul Card for the tram.
2) Wonderful connecting family rooms
3) Rooms were modern, spacious, clean and well maintained
4) Loved that the floors were hardwood. No dirty carpets
5) we had a room at the back of the hotel and it was super quiet
I would stay at this hotel again if/when visiting Istanbul.
Since I opted for the no breakfast option, I cannot provide feedback on the food. The restaurant on the 5th floor did have a wonderful view of the city and in the summer there is a roof terrace which also offers great views.
For breakfast there are tons of options nearby and it is fun to explore the area.