Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at Sultanahmet
What We Love
- The location, just steps from the city’s major historical sights
- Watching the sun set over Sultanahmet from the roof terrace, cocktail in hand
- The flower-filled garden is an oasis of peace in the city
What To Know
- Impeccable service
- There’s no pool because there’s a Byzantine Palace buried beneath the hotel
- Wifi isn’t free
- Free WiFi
- Handicap Accessible
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
Housed in a century-old Turkish prison, the neoclassical building is full of character, with arched windows, decorative tiled panels and a beautifully manicured garden. There are nods to the building’s palatial Ottoman past in the hand-painted ceilings, silk carpets, engravings and sparkling chandeliers. Otherwise the decor is contemporary-classic, with sumptuous furnishings in neutral tones.
Bed and Bath
The 65 spacious rooms and suites are arranged around the central courtyard and those on higher floors have spectacular views over the old city or the Sea of Marmara from wood-framed windows. They’re all tastefully decorated in warm but neutral tones, with bright kilims and original pieces of art for pops of local color. The marble bathrooms have powerful, walk-in showers, deep tubs and L’Occitane amenities.
Start the day with a lavish buffet breakfast at Seasons, either in the glass-walled conservatory or alfresco on the terrace. The Lounge is ideal for a light lunch of salads, sandwiches or pasta, while in the evening Seasons serves up Turkish and Mediterranean fare, including the signature boneless lamb shank cooked for eight hours and the caramelized pistachio crème brûlée for dessert. The garden is the place to be on a hot summer night or, for something extra-special, opt for a private dinner on the rooftop with spectacular views across the old city. After a hard day’s sightseeing, head to the basement spa for the Hagia Sophia massage which uses all-natural products.
In the Area
The city’s most famous landmarks —Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque — are on the doorstep, and the labyrinthine Grand Bazaar, the world’s oldest and largest covered market, is a short walk away. Go to Jennifer’s Hamam for high-quality, eco-friendly towels, linens and robes. Watch a Whirling Dervish show at the The Hodjapasha Culture Center, set in an atmospheric 550-year-old former hamam. Or cross the Galata Bridge to ‘new’ Istanbul to stroll along iconic Istiklal Caddesi, taking in the panoramic views from the 14th-century Galata Tower before enjoying meze with a modern twist at ” target=”_blank”>Meze by Lemon Tree.
How to Get There
This place was a very cool hotel in the center of old city. Staff amazing, service wonderful. The room was beautiful and the restaurant was five star. Great, great location near everything. No brainer to stay here.
This hotel is outstanding. The location in the center of Sultanahmet area is great for tourists and visitors. The Four Seasons brand is pretty consistantly first class. But this hotel is outstanding in both service and decor, and exceptional above other hotels in the brand. This was my 4th time staying there. The rooms are large and the bathrooms are big and beautiful. They provide salon class hair dryer as well and have excellent magnifying mirror (great for putting on contacts) The food is excellent, they have excellent turkish food which I really enjoyed but for americans that I have traveled with in the past who just like american food, they have that too. I would recommend it for Americans who are going on a cruise that is leaving from Istanbul, that is how I first ran accross this hotel. And for expericed travelers such as my self, it does not get better than this for center of Istanbul, which is a historical must see for all. The hotel has great security so that made me feel very safe. If someone is looking to stay in this great area, this is the best choice.
I visited Turkey in July 2019 for my annual birthday trip and stayed in Four Seasons Istanbul at Sultanahmet for two nights at the end of my Turkey trip. I have to say I made a very good choice to stay here and it did give me lots pleasant experiences as the end of my trip.
I knew the location of the hotel is in the old town district of Istanbul and it’s close to the Hagia Sophia and Sultanahmet Camii. What I didn’t know before I arrived at the hotel was it is indeed just in a lane beside the Hagia Sophia so the walking time to both above spots was like 5 min! And my room, thanks for the reception staff’s arrangement, had a view of Hagia Sophia at my balcony. That’s really amazing to have such a view and convenience to stay in this hotel. (Not all rooms have the view. You may want to check it out when u make a reservation.)
I was checking in the hotel at 12pm when the room was not ready yet. So I decided to have a lunch in the garden restaurant where I could see the beautiful scene of the hotel. As a premium hotel you would not see many guests in the public area and this provided me a very good time when I waited for my room. The waiter and waitress were very kind and considerate and they recommended some lovely cocktails as well as lunch menu for me. To my surprise the rates of the food were quite reasonable compared to other 5-star hotels around the world even those in Istanbul.
A staff confirmed my acknowledge that the hotel was a prison long time ago and it had been changed to be some other public architecture and then be a Four Seasons Hotel. You won’t believe how a previous prison could be renovated like it is now as a premium hotel.
The room was very comfortable as the Four Seasons standard and the hotel even prepared a drawing board and easel in the room for your leisure time - thanks to the view of Hagia Sophia. That’s a nice surprise to me again.
I would like to express my special thanks to Ms. Yeliz Yigit, a staff in concierge, who helped me to make a reservation at Ayasofya Hürrem Sultan Hamami, a traditional Turkish bath house where I believe was my best and most special experience in this Turkey trip. She also helped me to book the ticket of Turkish Whirling Dervishes and recommended me the other Turkish dance performance at the same venue, Hodjapasha. The first performance was actually not a “dance” but more a religious ceremony thus it was a bit boring than my expectation. But the second dance performance was quite good while it integrated some multi media shows with various dance and music performance.
I would also like to send my appreciation to the hotel that they sent me a birthday cake and a sparkling wine on my birthday. That made me feel so pampered and confirmed again that Four Seasons would be my forever choice for my birthday trips, in the past and future.
Some other tips for the hotel guests:
- There is an outdoor roof top bar at the 4th floor of the hotel where u can see the Hagia Sophia and enjoy some drink and dinner
- The shops around the hotel are not cheap and you have to prepare your bargain power before you visit, some of them are not in good manner if you decided not to buy after negotiation
- There are lots local restaurants in the area so you would have lots choices for food and drink when you stay there.