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“Superb family hotel in Sultanahmet”
Review of Basileus Hotel

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Basileus Hotel
Ranked #23 of 1,156 Hotels in Istanbul
Certificate of Excellence
Madison, Wisconsin
Level 6 Contributor
175 reviews
56 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 108 helpful votes
“Superb family hotel in Sultanahmet”
Reviewed April 13, 2014

This is a comfortable, family-run hotel with superb staff. The room had an easy chair with footrest, mini-fridge, in-room safe, modern bathroom, good heating, and a balcony door that opened to let in fresh air. The breakfast is copious; it required hours of walking to build up enough hunger to eat again in the late afternoon.
It's the outstanding staff who really make this hotel. Everyone was kind, helpful, and knowledgeable. They were always interested in our plans and ready to give suggestions to improve our experience. Their restaurant recommendations were perfect for us: small restaurants with excellent food and hardly a tourist in sight. Thank you Omar and Ekrem! You made us feel so welcome and you made our experience richer.
The location is close to major sites. The Sultanahmet area is full of tourists up the hill, but just down the hill are small hotels in a real neighborhood with small restaurants and grocery stores. The streets were laid out centuries ago, so they are steep, narrow and there is little sidewalk. I'm 65 years old and I managed it easily, even in the rain.
Noise is typical for a neighborhood. I'm a light sleeper, but I slept soundly.
I will surely return to Istanbul, and I can only hope that the Basileus will have a free room for me!

Room Tip: My room was 301, which has a small balcony and a street view. Lots of sunlight in the morning. Mod...
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank hrsch
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (298)
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  • Chinese (Simplified) first
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English first
Shoreham-by-Sea, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed April 11, 2014

This trip was an 18th birthday trip for my daughter and we both had the most brilliant time; made even more enjoyable due to staying in the Basileus hotel. It is in a great location, clean, lovely rooms and decor and came at a very good price. The self serve breakfast buffet is amazing (and should save you buying lunch!): toast, patisseries, fresh fruit, cereals, sausage & chips, meats, cheese and omelettes made to order. All this and then the staff: what an amazing group of people. They are so incredibly helpful and friendly. Nothing is too much bother and they do everything they can to make your holiday as enjoyable and fun as possible. Within a few minutes of arriving my daughter was presented with a birthday cake, candles and all! What a lovely and thoughtful surprise for her which she shared with other travellers who were in the lovely lounge area. This area, by the way, is a great hub of activity and a lovely way to feet others especially in the afternoon with the tea and cake provided; a fab way to share experiences of the day if you so wish. An all round wonderful first trip for us both.
Sharon and Alice, Shoreham-by-Sea, UK

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank Sharon1266
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Spicewood, Texas
1 review
Reviewed April 11, 2014

My stay at the Basileus Hotel "completed" my vacation. The location, charm, wonderful breakfast buffet, comfortable rooms, surpassed every expectation I had. The hotel staff are the BEST in the world. They are extremely professional and very caring of each and every guest. The Basileus Hotel is THE hotel in Istanbul!!!

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Kdreiss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin, Texas
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed April 10, 2014

We have just returned from a wonderful 10 days in Istanbul, where millions of tulips are in bloom everywhere. This was our tenth trip to this historic site, and the most enjoyable of them all. We stayed with another couple in the Basileus Hotel, by far the friendliest and most helpful hotel we have ever stayed at, anywhere. It is inexpensive, clean, and convenient to all the important major attractions. But most of all, it is managed and maintained by the most enjoyable and competent people imaginable. They love to share their passion for their city, to be helpful in every way possible. And the breakfast buffet is the best! We give them six stars on a five star system. Kay and John Cahalan, Austin, Texas.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank jkcahalan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leatherhead, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed April 6, 2014

I picked this hotel because of its location in Old Istanbul and the fact it was ranked 18th of all the hotels in Istanbul. I see it's gone up to 13th place now and this is well deserved, I think.

We stayed on the third floor in a double room (which had a huge king size bed and a couple of easy chairs, colour tv, etc) and were really happy with the facilities. Mini bar in the room with cooldrinks and water - we had water only which was replenished each day (no charge) and there is a safe in the wardrobe as well. The room was cleaned each day with fresh towels, too.

Excellent breakfast that caters for pretty much every taste I should imagine and omelettes cooked to order if you fancy one. There was apple tea, coffee, water and cake on offer in reception with plenty of seats so you could chat to other guests if you wanted to.

The hotel staff, especially Omar on the front desk, were so helpful. The first morning, Omar gave us a map and went through all the main highlights and suggested we could take the metro up to Taksim Square, walk down the pedestrianised road and go up Galata Tower. We did this and we took loads of photos from there. It was a great idea, which we probably wouldn't have thought of without his suggestion.

Less than 10 minutes walk to Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia, so brilliant location.

We really enjoyed Old Istanbul and were amazed that we could get a good hotel at such a reasonable rate. If you like small hotels with charming staff, this is the place for you.

Room Tip: We had a room on the side of the hotel, but it was pretty busy even so. No view, but we weren't...
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
5 Thank Penny S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 5 Contributor
90 reviews
81 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
Reviewed April 4, 2014

There is everything to love about this hotel and nothing to hate. The staff are very friendly, the breakfast is very robust (and fresh and healthy), the location is in the heart of Old Istanbul, the rooms are nice and it's not very expensive. What is there not to love?

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank DanielSkiffington
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bremen, Germany
Level 6 Contributor
82 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 123 helpful votes
Reviewed March 31, 2014

Sorry to say, but this was probably the first time a tripadvisor review has lead us to a bad hotel. And you need a good hotel when on vacation.
As everyone points it out, the location of it is really wonderful, not more than maybe 10 minutes from all the important things in the Sultanahmet area. HOWEVER: people keep forgetting to specify, that this very good location is at the foot of the steepest feeling hill in the whole of Istanbul. Narrow and steep streets leading up from the hotel, with barely any sidewalk to walk on (they are used for parking) and crazy traffic are what you will have to walk on.
We arrived on a rainy night to the hotel, and the street outside the main entrance is so steep and was so wet, that we really had to focus not to slip on the cobblestones while carrying in our bags.
Then we get to our room, which was rather stuffy and warm, and the AC wouldn't turn on to blow cold air. After 10 minutes of fiddling with it, in which time we resorted to opening the balcony door to cool down a bit, we decided to call reception for help. We were told, that even though each room has it's own AC, it's basically centrally controlled, and it cannot be made to cool the room in this time of the year. We started looking up hotels to shift into, and must admit that we found complete apartments for the same price as our stuffy room here...
The street in front of our room is very loud (and narrow) and in spite of the fact that the mosque that's visible from the room gives it an exotic touch, you might reconsider, if you are a light sleeper, when you'll hear the call for prayer at 5 in the morning, and several other times throughout the day. We did complain about this to the owners of the hotel, who were very apologetic about it, and told us, that apparently all hotels in this area are operating using the same air conditioning method.
The second seriously bad thing was that the door has NO LOCK, WHATSOEVER! All the doors in the room have turn-knobs for handles, and the only safety measure they got is that the main door's outside knob is not rotating (you can only open it with a key).
And finally, the worst part for last: we came home early and went to sleep at an odd hour (before 7 p.m.), in preparation for our early morning flight the next day. At around 8 p.m., we woke up to the sound of key being pushed into the door lock. It's ok, i thought, maybe someone got drunk and missed the room... Nothing could happen, since they got the wrong room, right?! WRONG: i was scared out of my mind, when the door actually opened!!! We both jumped out of bed, and whoever was trying to come in was gone by the time i got to the door. We already got room serviced that day, so my only thought is that someone 'unauthorized' wanted to get into the room for something... While checking out, we complained about this very odd happening to the owner of the hotel, who looked truly surprised to hear about something like this happening in his hotel. He told us, that he will check the surveillance videos, to find out what happened, but we haven't heard back from him since. The reason which makes me think that it was a malicious attempt is that by the time we got to the door (4 seconds?...), whoever was there, was long gone. Not a single "excuse me", or "sorry", just ran away. Sorry, but to me that seems fishy.
The breakfast buffet was served in the hotel's basement, and it was very good, with a wide selection of everything you can think of. I found the arrangement of tables to be very stuffy, and no apparent ventilation to the room makes it feel suffocating, humid and too warm.
This hotel feels like it's a family business, in which they have transformed a huge house into a hotel. I find that the furniture throughout the hotel is according to this.
Our room as well as the reception, was overcrowded with furniture. You can find a safe and extra blanket in the closet of your room. Cleanliness was satisfactory. There's no elevator in the hotel, so if you know you can't climb stairs, make sure to ask for a room on the ground floor.
There's a small shop just across the street, which is open until approximately 2a.m.. You can buy drinks and snacks over here, at very good prices (2 liters of water for 1,50 TL, coke for 2,50). There are many sweet shops and restaurants close by, but most everything closes at midnight. If you are craving a midnight snack, I believe the closest open restaurants are in Taksim square.
There are also shops offering shuttle service to the airport and back.
I cannot recommend this hotel, since that would make me feel like i'm purposefully putting someone in harm's way. Please avoid this hotel at least until the rooms' basic safety measures are updated.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
19 Thank Orsi J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Basileus Hotel

Property: Basileus Hotel
Address: Kadirga Liman Cad. Sehit Mehmet Pasa Sok. No:1 | Sultanahmet, Fatih, Istanbul 34122, Turkey
Location: Turkey > Istanbul > Sultanahmet
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Shuttle Bus service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #23 of 1,156 Hotels in Istanbul
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Basileus Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Basileus Hotel will be the good choice as it is located footsteps from to Byzatine and Ottoman monuments such as St.Sophia (Ayasofya), Blue Mosque (Sultanahmet Camii), Grand Bazaar, Topkapi Palace, Hippodrome, Basilica Cistern, Turkish & Islamic Museum, Archaelogic Museum , Old Traditional Baths and it is also very closed to Taksim , modern part of the city . ... more   less 
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