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
Outstanding hotel. The rooms are large and luxurious. Staff is attentive and courteous. Dining is excellent. Location to historic sites can’t get better. We knew the hotel was very good but our high expectations were surpassed.
We (along with our small dog) stayed at the Four Seasons for three fabulous nights at the beginning of October for the wedding of our niece. Everything was absolutely amazing, we had a beautiful room with a view of the Hagia Sofia, they welcomed our dog with her own bed, a toy, some treats and a personalized note to her! Cem was very kind to take care of her at the reception while we had our breakfast each morning. As we love our dog, we truly appreciated the extra steps taken to make all of us feel at ease. We also truly enjoyed the wedding service that took place on the terrace of the hotel, with a magical view of the Hagia Sofia in the background. One of the best stays I have ever had at a hotel, everyone I met was kind and professional and the hotel is situated in an ideal location for visiting.
We loved this hotel! The staff couldn't be more warm, welcoming and helpful, the rooms are comfortable and elegant, and the rooftop bar is stunning. We were warned that the gym was not very good, so I was pleasantly surprised to discover that it had everything I needed and then some. There were nice touches like a bottle of water, towel and headphones in each tread mill.