Istanbul boutique hotels
October 2, 2006 10:20 PM   Subscribe

I'm popping over for five days to Istanbul at the end of this month with the missus - any hotelage recommendations?

Price isn't too much of an issue (less the better of course!). Would like to be near the pretty mosques/bazars and have a room with a view/nice bathroom. Non-chain hotels preferred (ie quirky).
posted by Mossy to Travel & Transportation around Byzantion, Turkey (7 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
I cannot remember the name of the place I stayed at, but there are a number of cheap non-chain hotels in Sultanahmet, which is absolutely the area you should be aiming for. All the biggest attractions - the Blue Mosque, Hagia Sofia, the Basilica Cistern, Topkapi Palace, the archaeological museums - are about five or ten minutes' walk away.
posted by Paragon at 1:19 AM on October 3, 2006

Oh, and the nice bathroom part is probably going to be the hardest criterion to fulfil. Most plumbing in Turkey can't handle toilet paper, so they provide a bucket receptacle for ... that. And a lot of the toilets are still of the squatter variety. Of course, I'm probably thinking of a cheaper class of hotel than you're aiming for, so that may not be a problem.
posted by Paragon at 2:59 AM on October 3, 2006

There are a few nice "adult" hotels (rather than backpacker hostels) in Sultanahmet, they'd all have private western style toilets. Just google for "hotels sultanahmet" and look for anthing 3 stars or over.

And yeah, Sultanahmet is definitely the place you want.
posted by claudius at 4:18 AM on October 3, 2006

Two reccs
Yesil Ev and the Four Seasons. The second is obviously a chain, but it is a really beautiful hotel and not the typical businessmans palace.
posted by JPD at 4:42 AM on October 3, 2006

In a completely affordable range, Empress Zoe is fantastic - beautiful decoration, large garden, and plenty of cats. The rooms aren't terribly large, but the dark wood everywhere makes up for it.
posted by Spanner Nic at 5:15 AM on October 3, 2006

Slightly disagree-- stay in Pera/Beyoglu. (Pera Rose Hotel was nice.) This is a district with great shops, great dining, and located on a closed cobblestone street along with the famous fishmarket. It's "old" Istanbul, the equivalent of staying on the Lower East Side vs. staying in a hotel at the South St. Seaport. And from here, taxis to Sultanhamet are not that expensive, but you will be staying in a much cooler, yet less touristy part of town to enjoy your nights and meals in.
posted by raconteur at 7:44 AM on October 3, 2006

Absolutely second staying Beyoglu. Much better atmosphere, you really feel like you're in Istanbul as opposed to some Disneyfied version, which is what Sultanahmet feels like. Beyoglu is still pretty close to all the mosques and stuff by public transit, and it's a nice walk down to the water, or across the bridge, with the missus. Pretty romantic at sunset too.
posted by Brian James at 11:18 AM on October 3, 2006

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