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“What a view !!”

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Arasta Boutique Hotel
Ranked #271 of 1,113 Istanbul B&B and Inns
Reviewed November 3, 2010

We had originally booked to stay at Arasta in May this year, but due to a family emergency, had to cancel at the last minute. Mr. Tahsin very kindly offered to adjust the cancellation charges if we came later. When we did go end of September, true to his word, he gave us a discount that covered most of the cancellation charges.
Now to the hotel itself – the location is absolutely out of the world, just across the street from the Blue Mosque, step out and you are in the Arasta Bazaar, with all the tourist attractions within 5 minutes walk. We spent 5 nights there, 2 in a room with a view of The Blue Mosque and 3 facing the Sea of Marmara and both had spectacular views. The room across the mosque has a balcony, a perfect place for a morning cuppa and an evening drink. The ‘Honeymoon Room’ is really tiny, but the view of the Sea of Marmara is equally spectacular, and it was great to sit around and watch the giant cruise ships sail past.
The rooms were extremely clean, it was the kind of hotel you could look into the dark corners being quite sure you wouldn’t see anything unseemly. The staff were cheerful at all times, and Tahsin was always ready to help with suggestions of what to do and where to eat.
The breakfast, a reasonably hearty fare of fruits, eggs, bread & cold cuts, was on the terrace with views of the Blue Mosque and a little further along the road Aya Sofia, a great way to start the day.
Now the down side – in one room, the TV didn’t work, in the other the intercom didn’t, which meant 4 floors down and back up again if you wanted anything. The internet worked fitfully, more off that on in the room with the mosque view, and not at all in the honeymoon room. And there were other little irritants, like no pegs to hang your clothes, just one electric socket, so charging batteries & cell phones was a bit of a hassle. And the plywood staircase up to the terrace did seem slightly rickety and a bit of a fire hazard.
But despite these irritants, I would give the place 4 stars, would definitely stay there again if I was in Istanbul, and have no hesitation in recommending it, though I suggest you pick a room with a view, since that is certainly the USP of Arasta Hotel

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank mrgnk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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71 - 77 of 153 reviews

Reviewed October 24, 2010

Although the hotel is close to the Blue Mosque - the rooms are dirty and the interior very basic with the stairs made of uncovered plywood.
We found a half eaten sandwich in the fridge and on two days nobody cleaned the room or changed the thin towels that has plenty of holes in them.
The external balcolny door would not lock which made the room unsecure.
The whole place has a feel of a backpackers place - except for the expensive 5 euro orange juice for breakfast.
Just behind this hotel there is a street with much nicer and even cheaper places to stay (we checked out 2 places, one i think was called the Romantic Hotel - it actually felt like a hotel, was much cleaner and cheaper, plus the views were virtually the same.
The arasta is certainly not boutique. It is cheaply put together, shabby inside and not woth the money.

  • Stayed: August 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank Cardiffamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 10, 2010

I stayed there with my gf for 3 days , the hotel is in great area , so close to Bluse mosque, st sophia and topkapi place, the hotel made us feeling at home and we really liked the breakfast on terrace, we will definetly stay there next time we will go to istanbul

  • Stayed: August 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank Jamess020
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 10, 2010

We stayed here during the last week of May to attend the Turkish Grand Prix (F1). Not only is this hotel centrally located for Istanbul but that staff will work overtime to make sure you have what you need. We loved everyone on the staff that we met from the woman who cooked us great breakfasts on the rooftop patio (and couldn't really speak English) to the front desk staff, who speak very good English. The guys at the front desk were incredibly helpful, especially as we arrived a day early because of unexpected travel changes. We were able to get a room a day early and since we were staying 7 days they included free airport shuttle in both directions, which made getting there a breeze. (you definitely don't want to drive in Istanbul)

The race was held on the Asian side of the Bosporus in Tuzla and the front desk arranged van travel for us all 3 race days. We were picked up and dropped off right on time, making the race experience much more pleasant than it might have been.

This hotel is located in the heart of the Sultanahmet directly across from the Arasta Bazaar and the Blue Mosque with wonderful restaurants and cafes within easy walking distance. The city tram is an easy walk from the hotel as is the Ayasofia and the Topkapi Palace museum.

We stayed in two of their rooms, both clean and comfortable but American travelers need to be aware that most small hotels in Europe have much smaller rooms that they are used to. We stayed in a similar hotel in Paris and the Arasta Boutique had nicer rooms. The first 3 nights we spent on a back second floor room that was quite small with no real view but we had no complaints at all. The last 4 nights we spend in a larger room with a private patio on the third floor that looked directly out onto the Blue Mosque, an amazing view worth far more than the cost of our stay.

This place was a bargain for a week's stay, with wonderful people, a vibrant area of Istanbul to explore and far too much interesting things to see in a week. We will return to Istanbul if we can and when we do we will definitely stay with the wonderful people at the Arasta Boutique hotel.

  • Stayed: May 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank paddler59
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 2, 2010

This small gem of a hotel is in the middle of the Old Town of Istanbul with a smack-on view of the Blue Mosque or the Sea of Marmara. We had a blissful terrace with a spectacular view of the Blue Mosque, complete with the 5 daily calls to prayer. Our hosts were helpful and provided the best service to this exotic city. Breakfast was traditional Turkish and very filling, served on a 4th floor terrace. There are circular stairs, here, so not for those who have difficulty climbing. This little hotel is a great example of a B&B stay in the heart of a busy city. It's like staying with friends who want to spoil you and cater to every need.

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank pchTexas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 11, 2010

I am very surprised to notice that my review of the Arasta Boutique Hotel in Istanbul has not been published. This hotel is a shame for the city and should not even be open. Everything is made of plywood, including the very narrow stairs, which, in case of fire, would be very dangerous. Their "best" room was a cublicle with two big beds (when I had said we needed only one bed) and barely a space between them and the walls. On top of it, it was much more expensive than several nearby hotels which were much better. We had two wonderful stays at the Ferman Hotel in 2009 and at the Angel's Hotel in April 2010, both cheaper than the Arasta. We stayed less than one hour in the hotel. As soon as we saw the room and the stairs, we went in search of another hotel (that's when we went to the Angel's). We had to pay two nights, as we had booked for three (April 14th to 17th). We thought it would have been fair to pay only one night, as the standard of the hotel was absolutely not what we had asked by internet.

  • Stayed: April 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank jackyHongKong
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 14, 2010

Positives

-Great location close to historical attractions in Sultanahmet and an abundance of dining options.
-Breakfast on the Terrace had lovely views of the blue mosque.
-Breakfast spread was adequate and typical of Turkey. Standard cheeses, breads and jam feature with eggs and yummy fried cheese twists. Coffee and tea were made to order, but if you don’t drink either like my partner then you need to buy your own juice (which we saw other people doing also).
-Price was at the lower end of what we could find for a hotel in such a central location.
-Reception and breakfast staff are very friendly and try to make you feel at home.

Negatives

-State of the room we had was very disappointing.
Ours was the standard triple room located on the ground floor just by the reception. It was probably the worst room in the hotel. Our view was eye level to a make shift trash area, so we dare not open the windows.
Lack of sound proofing meant that we could hear the reception phones ring and people walking in and out of the hotel.
The room was so small there was just enough space to walk from the entrance to the bathroom. Which meant that when we opened the door our room was in full view of reception and only one person could really move about at anyone time.
The walls were patchy with rough plaster painted over, giving the place a very hostel feel.

Finding reasonably priced accommodation in Istanbul was difficult and even with the state of the room we got, I would still recommend the place if you get a good price. Alternatively, maybe pay abit extra for their deluxe rooms.

  • Stayed: April 2010, traveled with friends
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Thank SydneyBarney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Arasta Boutique Hotel

Address: Torun Sok. No 5 | Sultanahmet, Istanbul 34400, Turkey
Location: Turkey > Istanbul > Sultanahmet
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #271 of 1,113 B&Bs / Inns in Istanbul
Price Range: $55 - $250 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Arasta Boutique Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Arasta Boutique Hotel has 10 rooms , 3 standard double room, 2 family suite rooms with magnificent view with St. Sophie and Blue Mosque views and 3 standard double room with views of Hagia Sophie and Blue Mosque,1 double room with balcony and view of Marmara Sea and 1 Deluxe double room located terrace with the views of maramara sea and Princess Islands. . Each rooms is fully equipped with modern private bathroom, hair dryer, remote control T.V. The rooftop sitting and also breakfast room is a cosy place in winter with view of St Sophie, Blue Mosque and Marmara Sea under snow. In summer you'll be out on the terrace enjoying uninterrupted views of the Blue Mosque or the Sea of Marmara. ... more   less 
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