Top 10 Most Luxuries 5 Star Hotels In Istanbul | A fusion of age-old glories and a cool, contemporary 21st-century culture, the magnificent metropolis of Istanbul is the only city on the planet to sit across two continents, Asia and Europe, with a narrow strait – the Bosporus – in between them. It has been the capital of three great empires, the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires, and for more than 1,600 years over 120 emperors and sultans ruled the world from here. Today, it is Turkey’s cultural and financial epicenter. With its myriad of world-famous mosques, glorious palaces, exquisite museums and colorful eateries, it’s also very popular with tourists. Be inspired to travel Istanbul in style with my top 10 list of the most exclusive hotels in this fascinating city where East meets West.
1. ST REGIS ISTANBUL
Nestled in the heart of Nisantasi, the spectacular St. Regis Istanbul is surrounded by the exclusive district’s shops, dining, art, and entertainment. Mere steps away are such destinations as Macka Park, the convention center, the city center, and the Bosporus. The property has two signature restaurants: an intimate rooftop terrace venue and an eclectic French brasserie. The hotel’s 118 sumptuous accommodations – including 10 suites, one of them being designed by Bentley – boast a unique identity of discrete luxury, timeless elegance, and compelling grace. All guests enjoy the elevated level of bespoke service of the St. Regis Butler.
2. FOUR SEASONS HOTEL ISTANBUL AT THE BOSPHORUS
Located along the Bosphorus, in one of Istanbul’s most naturally beautiful neighborhoods, the Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosporus is a former 19th-century palace transformed into a hotel sanctuary of luxury and comfort. The 145 guest rooms and 25 suites are an airy fusion of traditional Ottoman architecture and contemporary furnishings. The pillared underground swimming hall (with classical music playing underwater) and ham mam are not to be missed! Watching the sunset from the expansive white tile terrace or from the outdoor pool with a glass of wine is unforgettable.
3. RAFFLES ISTANBUL
A beacon above the Bosphorus and discretely positioned in the stunning Zorlu Center, the Raffles Istanbul mixes natural elements with angular architecture in a sublime combination of ancient and modern. The hotel’s 132 guest rooms and 49 suites are divided into eight categories, from Deluxe Rooms to the Raffles Suite. Every space provides sweeping, panoramic views across the city, airy interiors, and signature Raffles butler service. You can relax by the gorgeous indoor pool and dine on gastronomic delights at two signature restaurants, two bars and lounges, and a patisserie. It’s truly dramatic.
4. PARK HYATT ISTANBUL – MACKA PALAS
The luxury five-star Park Hyatt Istanbul Maçka Palas combines elegance with distinctive regional character and historic art deco architecture with innovative interior design. The five-star city center hotel has 90 generously sized luxury rooms and suites that present traditional Turkish patterns and icons in contemporary scale and composition. The hotel is within walking distance of many upscale designers, fashion houses, as well as ultra-trendy bars and restaurants, making it an ideal location for leisure and business travelers.
5. CIRAGAN PALACE KEMPINSKI ISTANBUL
The numerous royals and heads of state staying at the Çırağan Palace are continuing a long tradition: in a previous life, this grandiose property on the European side of the Bosphorus was a residence for sultans. The regal feeling is most pronounced in the Palace suites, whose vaulted ceilings, elegant antiques and textiles evoke the opulence of the Ottoman Era. On-site dining options include Tugra, whose classic Turkish cuisine is considered among Istanbul’s finest. All restaurants and many rooms have sweeping views of the Turkish metropolis and stretch out across the Straits toward Asia.
6. SOHO HOUSE ISTANBUL
In 1873, Ignazio Corpi, a powerful Genoese shipbuilder in what was then known as the European quarter of Constantinople, commissioned a palatial residence bearing his family’s name. Following Iganzio’s death, it served as the U.S. embassy and residence, and then the US consulate general from 1937 to 2003. In 2014, Soho House began extensive restoration work on the Palazzo, returning it to its former glory. The building now functions as a private club and a 87 room hotel, with furnishings sourced from local artisans, the design bridges Eastern and Western styles. Don’t forget to visit the stunning rooftop pool!
7. SHANGRI-LA BOSPHORUS
The Shangri-La Istanbul is ideally located in the financial and entertainment district of Besiktas, between the Dolmabahce Palace and the Maritime Museum, boasting breathtaking views of the Bosphorus Strait. In all of the 186 spacious rooms and suites, the two restaurants and one bar, and the signature CHI Spa, you will find a tasteful combination of Asian-inspired elements (reflecting the brand’s roots) and Turkish luxury. All rooms come with complimentary high-speed Internet access and many provide exquisite views of the city and the Bosphorus Strait.
8. FOUR SEASONS HOTEL ISTANBUL AT SULTANAHMET
In an ancient city bounded by the mystic waters of the Golden Horn, Sea of Marmara and the Bosphorus, the Four Seasons Istanbul at Sultanahmet is housed in a century-old neoclassical Turkish prison with bold ochre-tinted walls. The hotel’s prime location means that it is just steps from Istanbul’s most important landmarks in Istanbul’s Old City, being the 6th-century St. Sophia, the 15th-century Topkapi Palace and the 17th-century Blue Mosque. The hotel’s 65 guest rooms and suites hint at their ancient (and infamous) past, all the while celebrating the rich culture of Turkey with faience tiles, Ottoman antiques, tapestries, and intricate carpets.
9. SUMAHAN ON THE WATER
Sumahan on the Water boutique hotel is situated in Çengelköy, on the waterfront of the Bosphorus on the Asian-side of the city. The 5 star hotels is a restored nineteenth century Ottoman distillery, where the high-proof ingredient was produced for Rakı, the famous Ottoman tipple. It’s a small luxury hotel that integrates high quality design with a respectful presence within its historical setting. In essence the Sumahan experience is about modern comfort in an ancient and spectacular context with a friendly and personal service. It is a contemporary architectural treasure, a heaven for escape and a gateway to Turkish culture.
10. W ISTANBUL
A proud blend of hip and historical, and a glittering tower amidst gilded domes and minarets, the W Istanbul is located in the center of the historic Akaretler Row Houses, an upscale neighborhood filled with restaurants, cafes, and design & art galleries. The 140 guestrooms and suites of this Turkish design hotel were recently refurbished and carry the soul of both history and contemporary luxury, featuring Marmara marble, Ottoman patterns, and lighting to experiment along with your mood. Rooms and suites with gardens, terraces or cabanas are adorned with flat screen TVs, the signature W bed and stylish luxuries.