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Four Seasons Istanbul at the Bosphorus
Ranked #32 of 1,141 Hotels in Istanbul
Certificate of Excellence
Hamburg, Germany
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“great hotel”
Reviewed October 17, 2010

nice clean and comfortable rooms. great location super spa and swimming pool; good restaurant;

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Nick757
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,398 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (299)
Date | Rating
  • Arabic first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
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English first
NYC
Level Contributor
71 reviews
69 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 199 helpful votes
Reviewed October 3, 2010

I spent 4 nights at the Four Seasons Istanbul at the Bosphorus. I was blown away by every aspect of FS Bosphorus. Details below.

Arrival:
A phalanx of doormen and greeters greeted us by name and ushered us quickly into the hotel.

Turndown service and housekeeping touches:
Bottles of water, accompanied by drinking glasses covered with protective caps for cleanliness. Plate of small desserts each night.

Housekeeping touches:
Tasteful bookmarks stamped with the Golden Horn motif, inserted in the novels we were reading. Fruit basked refilled daily.

Toiletries:
Full-size Aqua di Parma.

Restaurants:
At Aqua, the servers and maitre d’ went out of their way to ensure that our meals were enjoyable, tailoring them to our preferences, introducing us to local specialties when they sensed our interest, and warmly greeting us by name each morning when we arrived for breakfast, which included an incredibly lavish buffet and made-to-order items. Service and quality of food for dinner and lunch was consistently high.

Spa and Fitness Center:
Spacious, high-ceilinged fitness center—one of the largest I’ve ever seen in a resort or hotel. The spa itself is a superb space, with men’s and women’s areas on each side of a columned, tiled indoor pool. In each of the gendered areas, the décor is subtly evocative of Turkish design, with lamps and candelabra creating a sense of place. Each side contains a waiting area, relaxation area, steam room, and sauna.

Public Areas--Interior:
Exquisite. As usual with FS, tremendous floral displays in the public areas, and subtle design elements that speak of Istanbul without ever devolving into kitsch—a fireplace in the lounge that echoes the shape of the fireplaces in the Topkapi harem, objet d’art of museum quality, Turkish carpets, etc.

Public Areas—Exterior:
In a subtle reference to the marble terracing that abounds at Topkapi, FS has used the same white-and-gray marble to create a really superb outdoor space, with a fountain, benches, and red gardenias galore. To the left of the hotel is the outdoor dining area—Aqua restaurant and an outdoor lounge for more casual orders throughout the day. To the right is the pool. But straight in back of the hotel simply and perfectly an open terrace of marble, centered upon a fountain, so that the views from the hotel to the Bosphorus are unmarred. The pool area is very smart—and the cabanas are free, first-come, first served. Turkish-themed music is piped underwater.

Guest Rooms:
I’d steer clear of any of the rooms in the annexes, which lack the high ceilings of the palace building. See below for a glimpse of the unattractive annex buildings—which you don’t see on the website. I stayed in Palace Garden room--because I knew I wanted to be in the historic main building with its high-ceilinged rooms. My mistake was not to have splurged for a Bosphorus view in the palace building. I’d assumed that I wouldn’t spend enough time in my room to pay the premium for that view, but each time I walked by one of those rooms with the door propped open by housekeeping, the view out to the Bosphorus really did take my breath away. I have to say: I think it’s worth it. But so you can judge for yourself, I’ve posted the views from the rooms facing the front of the hotel, overlooking the entrance. Not an eyesore, but certainly not the Bosphorus, either. Regardless of view, I loved the room itself in the main building—very high ceilings, painted. Contemporary furnishings, in soothing taupe and pale blue. Arched ceiling in the bathroom. Rather than the typical Four Seasons pillows and bedding (white with a colored rectangular border), the bedding here, equally comfortable, was off-white with a subtle pattern.


Service:
Superb, across the board. Everyone knew our names; the concierge team delivered daily reminders, on evocative cards designed to replicate famous Ottoman tiles, of our reservations; noting from her passport that my girlfriend’s birthday has occurred in the past week, they delivered a surprise chocolate dessert to our room within an hour of our arrival.

Summary:
I was lured back to Istanbul entirely because of the praise that many of you and others have heaped upon this hotel/resort, and I must say that every bit of that praise was deserved—staying here was worth the cross-Atlantic trip all by itself, even if I’d never left the hotel to re-acquaint myself with Istanbul’s charms (including, after 17 years, the removal of the scaffolding from the central dome in Hagia Sophia). It was genuinely difficult to leave, so comfortable, beautiful, and generous is the spirit that pervades the entire place.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank DaneP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Riyadh Province, Saudi Arabia
Level Contributor
22 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed October 1, 2010

Wonderful experience. I travelled with my 15 and 8 year old daughters. We absolutely loved the hotel. It is modern chic within an old castle type of style.
The service was impecable from all the staff members.
Best treatment i have had from staff of a hotel, and i have visited hundreds of hotels from all classes within my life time.
This has got to be my number one favorite from all that i have seen with regards to the professinalism, facilities, treatment, rooms and hotel luxury. Even Burj AlArab in Dubai didnt treat us as professional as this hotel did.
I slaute all staff memebrs who have made our trip a memorable and delightful one.
I highly recommend this hotel to anyone that wants luxury and doesnt mind spending a little extra money for it.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank whitey_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ashburton, New Zealand
2 reviews
Reviewed September 24, 2010

We stayed here for a friends birthday, before taking a boat for the rest of our holiday.

We had a room in the old palace, it was stunning, comfortable with fabulous views over the Bosphoras.

The reception, pool area, restaurants and terrace areas were spectacular, as is the entrance. The service was faultless.

We will be going back next year, for longer, and there simply is (in my opinion) no other place to stay.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Mary1965b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
44 reviews
38 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed September 12, 2010

Stunning location with beautiful common parts, pool, spa etc. Close enough to city sites but far enough for some peace and quiet. Only criticism would be the complete lack of any view from our room (1st floor in left hand new building). Go for main building or higher floors in new blocks. Expensive but worth it. Wifi was pricey and did not work very well, but they credited this when I complained.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank LuxuryLoverLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Jersey
Level Contributor
120 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
Reviewed August 30, 2010

We booked a room through the American Express platinum hotel program and couldn't have been happier. Having been to Istanbul previously, we wanted a place to relax for a day before embarking on a cruise.

Upon arriving at the hotel at 11 a.m., our room wasn't ready so they immediately upgraded us to a junior suite overlooking the Bosphorus that not only looked beautiful, but had all the necessary appointments one would want.

We put on our bathing suits and headed to the pool that was beautiful with a gentle wind cooling us off. The attendants couldn't do enough for us including their serving different frozen non-alcoholic fruit drinks every hour in a different flavor. There was a casual restaurant adjoining the pool area that was quite expensive but hit the spot for a light bite during the early afternoon.

The concierge was wonderful having made several bookings from at home for us. A driver was waiting at the airport for us and promptly took over our luggage upon our identifying ourselves.

A dinner reservation was made for us at the Sunset Grill, a restaurant I would highly recommend that overlooks the city with breathtaking views and wonderful food. I was told about this restaurant from an expat, and it didn't disappoint. This upscale establishment served many affluent locals, as well as a well-dressed international crowd. It was "country club casual" in attire and served a wonderful array of food selections including sushi. I ordered a fabulous grilled fish and my husband a seafood combination plate that were wonderful. We started with different appetizers and were mesmerized as we sipped our drinks while watching a nearby bridge turn colors every few minutes. The restaurant has it's own website where you can make reservations on line, but I had the concierge make the reservation for us several weeks in advance. The host noted to give us a v.i.p. table as requested by the Four Seasons. It was delightful.

Also a reservation was made in advance for our visit to the Dolmabahce Palace the following morning. We hadn't gone their on our last stay, and it was very close to the hotel. It was an opulent building that was worth the visit and perfect to keep us occupied after a delicious breakfast served outside overlooking the water at the hotel. This was included in our American Express package along with a late check out.
We returned to the hotel after a great tour of the palace that does require reservations for the English speaking tour and had time for a quick dip in the pool, before heading to the pier for our cruise which was nearby the hotel as well.

This was a perfect start to a great vacation.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank NewJerseyWanderlust
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed August 30, 2010

I'd have to say, this four seasons hotel is like no other. Great service, rooms, facilities and staff. The breakfast's are amazing, especially the pastry. The managers at the breakfast are really nice, you can ask them for special egg dishes, despite they are not included in the buffet. Only thing about this hotel is the location. It is not as good as the other Four Seasons in town, i would recommend you to get a car or else traffic maybe troublesome. In general, great hotel. I would definitely go again.

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank mattchen82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Four Seasons Istanbul at the Bosphorus

Property: Four Seasons Istanbul at the Bosphorus
Address: Ciragan Cad. No. 28 | Besiktas, Istanbul 34349, Turkey
Phone Number:
Location: Turkey > Istanbul > Besiktas
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Business Hotel in Istanbul
#10 Romantic Hotel in Istanbul
#10 Family Hotel in Istanbul
#11 Spa Hotel in Istanbul
#20 Luxury Hotel in Istanbul
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Four Seasons Istanbul at the Bosphorus 5*
Number of rooms: 170
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosphorus. On the European bank of the Bosphorus – which flows through Istanbul’s history and heart – Four Seasons gives a 19th-century palace a fresh, eclectic spirit. Alluring facilities include a chic urban spa. Fine restaurants and pools by the quayside overlook the Asian shore. And all are awash in the light, space and excitement of this water’s-edge location. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
4 Seasons Istanbul At The Bosphorus
Four Seasons Istanbul At The Bosphorus Hotel Istanbul
Four Seasons The Bosphorus
Istanbul Four Seasons

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