One of the newer 5-star hotels that visitors to Istanbul can now enjoy, is the Ritz-Carlton Hotel. Located at the crossroads of two continents – Europe and Asia – The Ritz-Carlton, Istanbul is a practice in culture, hospitality and luxury. Featuring exceptional accommodations, world-class cuisine, a nurturing spa and impeccable service, this Istanbul luxury hotel’s amenities and services provide an unforgettable retreat in the heart of one of the world’s most fascinating cities. It overlooks an amazing view of the Bosporus Strait, and the location makes it easy to enjoy all that Istanbul has to offer. Within the immediate vicinity of the hotel, you have the Dolmabahçe Palace, which was the last residence of the Ottoman sultans, built in 1850. Within walking distance, is Taksim Square, with its many restaurants, nightlife, cinemas, theaters, and shopping, as well. It’s a great amusement area for the whole family.
Rooms and suites are definitely too international standards, with 5-star amenities that are reminiscent of the decadence the sultans must have enjoyed. There’s no such thing as a standard room here, deluxe is the name and pampering is the game! But it’s also an authentic Turkish experience! From the Turkish inspired décor, to the feather beds, to the Iznik tiled bathrooms, to the flat screen tv – well, for the local news, anyway! But the little extra touches are definitely inspired by Turkish culture. At the Ritz-Carlton, Istanbul, genuine care and concern for their guests is their highest mission. They give everything the human touch, making it a grand experience for any traveler.
Speaking of the human touch, even if don’t go for a Turkish bath experience, you gotta check out the Laveda Spa… It’s heaven… One of the best hammans in Istanbul can be found right here in the Ritz-Carlton. This is the first and only open air spa in Istanbul! There is 25,866 square feet of spa at the hotel, making for 9 treatment rooms including two authentic Turkish bath suites. After a massage, guests can enjoy and relax in the Jacuzzi, which is totally in the privacy of the spa suite. They have therapies and treatments authentic to Turkey, as well as, for the rest of the world, from the Far East to Scandinavia. Then, after a massage and Jacuzzi, check out one of the largest indoor pools I’ve ever seen…and yes it’s heated! And with the painted sky, it’s almost like being outdoors!
But what really makes the hotel special is the local experience. Some hotels are the same everywhere, but here, you really know you’re in Turkey. From freshly poured cherry sherbet, to all the sugary Turkish Delight, you can eat. Here, they’re very proud of every little thing they can do for you. Since we are tickling our tummies with that sweet stuff, I just have to rave about the fantastic Turkish cuisine. Yum! The restaurants here at the Ritz Carlton offer international and Turkish items on the menus, including those famous kabobs, Turkish teas, and even a breakfast fit for a sultan! The morning buffet here is amazing!
Named after one of the most striking design motifs in traditional Ottoman art, Çintemani Restaurant offers a menu composed of specialties from East to West. Here is where you will find a menu of total indulgence in the fine cuisine of Turkey and the both Mediterranean and Eastern countries surrounding it. There are individual selections as well as set menus for several variations of traditional foods. Here is where you will find that fabulous breakfast buffet, featuring Turkish morning dishes, traditional egg dishes, as well as their special raisin brioche French toast and lemon pancakes with a warm fruit compote. What a way to start your day!
For evening libations you’ll discover the RC Bar is decorated in the style of an old English club, with richly wood-paneled walls and boasting Istanbul’s largest collection of fine single malt whiskies, an extensive selection of premium cigars and nightly servings of live music in a setting reminiscent of the British private club bars. For after-dinner conversation or early evening enjoyment, RC Bar provides a quiet and comfortable setting, presenting a creative cocktail menu as evidenced by their famous combination of Moet et Chandon Rosé Champagne with cinnamon scented cheese cake, caramelized apples and blackberry compote.
Now the Lobby Lounge features splendid views of the Bosphorus, a perfect place for meeting friends and colleagues to relax over an elegant afternoon tea or evening cocktail. There are international and traditional tea specialties, three chocolate fountains and the afternoon tea buffet is served daily from 2:30 – 5:30 pm along with live piano and violin duo. An enchanting way to rest in the afternoon from all that sightseeing in the morning.!
For something special in the evening, you must visit the Güney Park Terrace. On the Güney Park Terrace, starlit vistas stretch all the way to Princess Islands. They have live music playing in the background, making this outlook an idyllic spring and summer setting to enjoy an enticing menu inspired by Levantine cuisine. Dishes are highlighted by small bites, mezzes and grilled specialties over real charcoal and tempting cocktails. After a day of sightseeing, there’s nothing like relaxing with a view to marvel over this amazing city. It’s really quite an experience to sip your cocktail while watching the waters of the Bosphorus and the boats trickling back and forth through the waterway.
The Turkish experience…made even more special by people who are very glad that you’re here. I’m sure you will rave about your stay at the Ritz-Carlton Istanbul, I certainly have, and I can’t wait to visit this ancient city again!