Need a recommendation

Old Jun 30th 2010, 6:01 pm
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Default Need a recommendation

Have any of you been to Istanbul? I want to go there for a few days in august. I would like to stay in the Sultanamed (old town) district. Can anybody recommend a nice , but not too expensive hotel? I looked on line and the amount of hotels is overwhelming, plus I do not quite trust the reviews.

Any help is appreciated.
Thanks.
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Old Jun 30th 2010, 6:22 pm
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Default Re: Need a recommendation

Originally Posted by Alexa View Post
Have any of you been to Istanbul? I want to go there for a few days in august. I would like to stay in the Sultanamed (old town) district. Can anybody recommend a nice , but not too expensive hotel? I looked on line and the amount of hotels is overwhelming, plus I do not quite trust the reviews.

Any help is appreciated.
Thanks.
Will check with my MD who spent last 14 years in Istanbul tomorrow. Any preference on style/budget or would you be happy to go with his recommend. I'd trust him...
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Old Jun 30th 2010, 6:57 pm
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Default Re: Need a recommendation

Originally Posted by Roadking View Post
Will check with my MD who spent last 14 years in Istanbul tomorrow. Any preference on style/budget or would you be happy to go with his recommend. I'd trust him...
We;ll be three people. Need one room, would like to be in a decent 4 star with roof terrace in the sultanamed (old town) district).
Thanks, appreciate it!
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Old Jul 1st 2010, 5:48 am
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Default Re: Need a recommendation

Originally Posted by Alexa View Post
We;ll be three people. Need one room, would like to be in a decent 4 star with roof terrace in the sultanamed (old town) district).
Thanks, appreciate it!
OK, he said DON'T stay in Sultanamed, it's dirt poor and not a nice area to stay. Definitely visit it as this is where all the tourist attractions are, but stay instead in Taksim. It's about 10 minutes taxi ride.

Taksim has loads of hotels of all budgets. Istiklal Caddesi is the main street in Taksim where you can walk around and have lots of things to see. But, a big no to staying in Sultanamed.

HTH.
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Old Jul 1st 2010, 6:10 am
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Default Re: Need a recommendation

Originally Posted by Roadking View Post
OK, he said DON'T stay in Sultanamed, it's dirt poor and not a nice area to stay. Definitely visit it as this is where all the tourist attractions are, but stay instead in Taksim. It's about 10 minutes taxi ride.

Taksim has loads of hotels of all budgets. Istiklal Caddesi is the main street in Taksim where you can walk around and have lots of things to see. But, a big no to staying in Sultanamed.

HTH.
ah so sweet, so unlike you....
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Old Jul 1st 2010, 6:13 am
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Default Re: Need a recommendation

Originally Posted by Grace O Malley View Post
ah so sweet, so unlike you....
I'm taking pills....hopefully I'll be back to normal soon.
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Old Jul 1st 2010, 1:13 pm
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Default Re: Need a recommendation

Originally Posted by Roadking View Post
OK, he said DON'T stay in Sultanamed, it's dirt poor and not a nice area to stay. Definitely visit it as this is where all the tourist attractions are, but stay instead in Taksim. It's about 10 minutes taxi ride.

Taksim has loads of hotels of all budgets. Istiklal Caddesi is the main street in Taksim where you can walk around and have lots of things to see. But, a big no to staying in Sultanamed.

HTH.
Thanks, had no idea, good to know!
xoxoxo
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Old Jul 1st 2010, 1:22 pm
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Default Re: Need a recommendation

Originally Posted by Alexa View Post
Thanks, had no idea, good to know!
xoxoxo
Came back from vacations in Istanbul three days ago and have been there a few times. Amazing city. I second what was said here, stay in Taksim as Sultanamet is not very nice in the evenings.

But please do not take taxis if possible as traffic is awful in Istanbul. From Taksim Square to Sultanameth, take the Funicular and then the tramway. It is comfortable, fast, inexpensive and you can take a look around.

From the airport there is a bus to Taksim square, around 11 Turkish Liras each person. A taxi would cost you around 60 TL but they may ask you 100 TL, negotiate hard and buy a return ride.

Enjoy.
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Old Jul 1st 2010, 1:43 pm
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Default Re: Need a recommendation

Ahem...I do not have the benefit of living in Istanbul for 14 years.

But having travelled there several times for pleasure this is what I have to say:

Istanbul is odd compared to European cities in that the historic part of town with the bulk of the main sights isn't also the most desirable or pleasurable part of town.

Sultanahment, as has been mentioned, is not the centre for fashion or fine dining in Istanbul.

But to call it unsafe is stretching it a bit. I always stay in Sultanahment because I want to be in close proximity to the Hagia Sophia, the Bazaar and the Blue Mosque. The areas between the Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque and stretching down to the golden horn and the ferries/bridge to Beyoglu/Taksim side is perfectly fine. It's packed with tourists (a possible disadvantage) but is filled with clean, pleasant and cheap hotels, and is within walking distance of most of the sights. The hotels facing the Sea of Marmara just below the Hagia Sophia and Blue Mosque have stunning views of the sea and it is a charming and heavily restored part of Istanbul that does have some historic ambiance.

Taksim may be where modern Istanbulites to hang out but it's generic modern post-war urbanism. Tall buildings, ubiquitious expensive shops and pricier restaurants. Plus it's a trek to get to Sultanahmet where the historic sites are. Besides, there are certainly sketchy parts close to Taksim and Beyoglu. Some of the side streets off Iddeski Cal aren't places I'd want to walk up alone at night.

A terrific and surprisingly cheap hotel in a great location surrounded by other good hotels and decent places to eat is the Hotel Peninsula. http://www.hotelpeninsula.com/
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Old Jul 1st 2010, 2:40 pm
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Default Re: Need a recommendation

Originally Posted by Ethos83 View Post
Ahem...I do not have the benefit of living in Istanbul for 14 years.

But having travelled there several times for pleasure this is what I have to say:

Istanbul is odd compared to European cities in that the historic part of town with the bulk of the main sights isn't also the most desirable or pleasurable part of town.

Sultanahment, as has been mentioned, is not the centre for fashion or fine dining in Istanbul.

But to call it unsafe is stretching it a bit. I always stay in Sultanahment because I want to be in close proximity to the Hagia Sophia, the Bazaar and the Blue Mosque. The areas between the Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque and stretching down to the golden horn and the ferries/bridge to Beyoglu/Taksim side is perfectly fine. It's packed with tourists (a possible disadvantage) but is filled with clean, pleasant and cheap hotels, and is within walking distance of most of the sights. The hotels facing the Sea of Marmara just below the Hagia Sophia and Blue Mosque have stunning views of the sea and it is a charming and heavily restored part of Istanbul that does have some historic ambiance.

Taksim may be where modern Istanbulites to hang out but it's generic modern post-war urbanism. Tall buildings, ubiquitious expensive shops and pricier restaurants. Plus it's a trek to get to Sultanahmet where the historic sites are. Besides, there are certainly sketchy parts close to Taksim and Beyoglu. Some of the side streets off Iddeski Cal aren't places I'd want to walk up alone at night.

A terrific and surprisingly cheap hotel in a great location surrounded by other good hotels and decent places to eat is the Hotel Peninsula. http://www.hotelpeninsula.com/
Ahem back at'ya bud, no-one said it was unsafe, just not the best place to stay. Having never been, I can't give any personal input but the guy who told me lived there for 14 years, is married to a Turkish wife and his daughter was born there.

I'd go with his opinion...but then each to their own.
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Old Jul 1st 2010, 4:50 pm
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Default Re: Need a recommendation

Acknowledged.

There are people who keep telling me to stay in Taksim/Beyoglu but I find the area too generic. I might as well be in Madrid or Barcelona or Munich if you change the topography and language. Same type of shops, restaurants, bars and nightclubs. For a much more atmospheric Turkish ambiance you are better off in Sultanahmet.

If I were Turkish and from Istanbul I'd probably rarely venture into Sultanahmet similar to how we rarely venture into Bur Dubai. Seen it, but we don't live or work there. But if you are a tourist it's hard to beat Sultanhamet unless you are looking for the glam travel experience where staying in fancy hotels and hitting the chick nightspots is just as important or even more important than local cultural offerings.

Originally Posted by Roadking View Post
Ahem back at'ya bud, no-one said it was unsafe, just not the best place to stay. Having never been, I can't give any personal input but the guy who told me lived there for 14 years, is married to a Turkish wife and his daughter was born there.

I'd go with his opinion...but then each to their own.
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Old Jul 2nd 2010, 6:28 am
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Default Re: Need a recommendation

Use Trip Advisor website - excellent source of good locations to stay
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Old Jul 2nd 2010, 7:45 am
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Default Re: Need a recommendation

I liked staying in the Taksim/Beyoglu area. We only went for a long weekend, but I totally loved the city.

We stayed here:

http://www.i-escape.com/places_to_st...hotel_key=1075

Such a great boutique hotel and the staff were fantastic. I would stay here again 100% for sure...
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