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“All old world charm and class!”
Review of Pera Palace Hotel

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Pera Palace Hotel
Ranked #48 of 1,173 Hotels in Istanbul
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed February 18, 2012

What an amazing hotel. Beautifully renovated Grand Hotel with staff that you can only dream of attending to you! Fantastic public areas, wonderful rooms and very knowledgable, courteous and friendly staff! Really FIVE star!

  • Stayed: January 2012
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1  Thank Idenburger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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721 - 727 of 1,175 reviews

Reviewed February 6, 2012

I m really greateful to welcoming staff of Pera Palace for being so kind, helpful and sincere to make my stay so enjoyable. I had a short stay for a business interview and loved staying at this hotel for being so chic, central and for the feeling of staying in a palace.

I definitely recommend to ask the best places to see and dine to Evren. Many thanks to Mr.Onar and his team for providing a nice room and stay during my first visit to Istanbul.

After dinner, enjoy your drink at orient bar that takes you into its history.

Room Tip: ask for grandpera studio room
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  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank GeorgieLyon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 30, 2012

For close proximity to the bustling nightlife of Istanbul, the Pera Palace Hotel is the ultimate in luxury and the only place to be. Few hotels can boast the range of roles in fiction than the Pera Palace, showing up as it does in Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express, Ian Fleming’s From Russia with Love and Alfred Hitchcock’s The Lady Vanishes.

As I arrived in the colonnaded marble hall, a group of greeters in crisp grey tails and black foulard pounced on me with alarming servility, purring 'Welcome to Pera Palace. Let us help you'. It was an introduction that sums up the time-honored traditions of old Istanbul, and this legendary pearl first opened in 1892 in the twilight years of the Ottoman Empire. Turkey's first Western hotel has recently undergone a four-year $30million much-needed facelift to restore it to its old school splendor and now it’s a 'museum-hotel'.

First opened in 1892 of the Ottoman Empire to serve European passengers of the Orient Express train, the hotel had the city's first elevator (still working) and was the first building in Istanbul, other than the Ottoman palaces, to have hot water and electricity. Eminent guests included Greta Garbo, Mata Hari, King Edward VIII, Queen Elizabeth II, Emperor Franz Joseph, Zsa Zsa Gabor, Sarah Bernhardt, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Alfred Hitchcock and Ernest Hemingway. It was not by chance that it attracted Agatha Christie, who is said to have written some of Murder on the Orient Express in Room 411, although in the novel she has Hercule Poirot check into the now demolished Hotel Tokatlian once located nearby.

The soaring lobby leads to the majestic, domed Kubbeli Saloon and Tea Lounge with its soaring domed ceiling and bold striped walls and 'Arabian Nights' ambience; the Orient Bar and the Patisserie de Pera have a nostalgic charm. A new basement level features a spa and Turkish bath, as well as the refined Agatha restaurant (named after Agatha Christie, the hotel's most famous guest), run by the buoyant chef Maximilian JW Thomae, who fashioned the menu to reflect the notable stops on the Orient-Express: Paris, Venice and Istanbul by mixing French, Italian and Turkish delights including a heavenly chilled artichoke soup with quail kebab served on a steaming bed of Asian risotto. Also, I had one of the best breakfasts of my life at the hidden away Patisserie de Pera, a charming in-house patisserie which serves French pastries, macaroons, amazing healthy omelets and pots of strong, steaming coffee in grand hotel style. a delightfully nostalgic setting for breakfast,

The restoration have preserved the hotel's orientalist décor, strongly evocative of fin-de-siècle Constantinople, faithful to the original designs and color schemes in the public spaces, but the 115 rooms have been completely reconstructed to make them uber comfy including all the latest tech gadgets. Don’t worry, they still highlight original nineteenth-century features like white Carrara marble and gorgeous Murano glass chandeliers

My room boasts a comfy French balcony with stunning views from Galata to the Golden Horn, from the slopes of Eyup to Tepebasi. Inside, antique paintings, classic furniture and rich fabrics convey an aura of fascination and elegance. Also with Golden Horn views are the two Presidential Suites. Liberally sized at 115 square meters, and located on the fourth and fifth floors of the hotel, the living areas include dining room, living room and study, as well as a huge dressing room which would make the Housewives of Beverly Hills jealous and separate guest bathrooms.

Nothing beats the jetlag of a long transatlantic trip like a scintillating spa treatment and the Pera’s 380-square-meter spa facilities (managed by Spa Soul in cooperation with world famous Swiss Spa brand After the Rain,) offers an indoor jet stream swimming pool, steam bath, Jacuzzi, sauna and a fully equipped gym, and a traditional Turkish hammam. Treatments are named after celebrity guests like Greta Garbo, the Divine or Hemingway’s Choice treatment for men.

If first impressions are anything to go by, grande dame of Istanbul definitely captures the bygone glamour days of the Ottoman Empire. It’s a definitely cherished gem.

Room Tip: A few steps beyond is a mayhane called Refik, a drinking house that also serves meze. Sofyali alley...
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  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled on business
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4  Thank Robert E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 24, 2012

Highly recommend popping in, just to see the historic elevator, and have a (rather expensive but well worth it) drink in the bar, as Agatha Christie, Mata Hari, and Hemmingway did. Take a look upstairs and see where Agatha Christie wrote Murder on the Orient Express (room 411)........it is in the book "1,000 Places to See Before You Die" afterall!

Stayed: January 2012, traveled as a couple
Thank mandy939
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 20, 2012

We held a conference just after this hotel reopened and the staff, since left I understand, were as helpful as possible. The rooms, whilst small, were well done though I doubt they will hold up to hard use as time goes by. It was a good conference and the customer facing staff were great. The hotel admin however was appalling, unable to determine who had booked in our group, they couldn't reconcile room nights( stay lengths) with number of rooms and then tried to claim beyond the agreement. Be very careful indeed.

Room Tip: The bigger the better.
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  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled on business
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Thank General S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 18, 2012

When one searches for a hotel in Istanbul this is not one that normally appears. I found it through a friend's recommendation. It is an old hotel - one of the oldest in Istanbul - where the earliest Orient Express passengers were taken in sedan chairs from the train station when they arrived. It is situated on an elevated part of the city and one side of the hotel has views of the city and sea. Not far from a major pedestrianised shopping area with multiple taxis available close by.
From the moment you arrive one notices the genuine friendly and hospitable attitude to guests. Turks are naturally friendly, proud of their identity and welcome you to their country. The hotel is immaculately clean and well maintained - in the old fashioned style. They even have a working elevator from 1892 - the first in Istanbul. Yes, they also have modern elevators.

You can feel the history of this hotel where famous people have stayed. The public rooms are beautiful with impeccable service.
Their food is excellent if you want to dine in and there is a swimming pool and gymnasium if you want to work off the calories.

Everything is beautifully presented and nothing is too much trouble for the staff. Service with a capital S.

Ask for a room - if possible, with views and imagine yourself whisked back in time to the 1920's.

The downside? Only one that I noticed. The walls of the rooms are paper thin and so one can hear everything from the adjoining room. Conversations, footsteps - everything. Not a problem if the adjoining room is empty but a major turn off if you are trying to sleep and the person next door is operating on a different time zone!

Otherwise a great place to stay and sally forth to explore an amazing city.

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a view or take a corner suite if you can afford it
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  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled on business
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1  Thank stargazer43
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 15, 2012

Top hotel in Istanbul with shopping, bars, nightclubs just around the corner.
Great breakfast and great rooms (stayed in top floor with private balcony).
Excellent service and a nice pool in the hotel.

  • Stayed: October 2011, traveled on business
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Review collected in partnership with Apollo
Thank Jenfro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Pera Palace Hotel

Address: Mesrutiyet Cad. Tepebasi, No:52 | Beyoglu, Istanbul 34430, Turkey
Location: Turkey > Istanbul > Beyoglu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#19 Spa Hotel in Istanbul
#29 Business Hotel in Istanbul
#34 Luxury Hotel in Istanbul
#39 Family Hotel in Istanbul
#46 Romantic Hotel in Istanbul
Price Range: $99 - $233 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Pera Palace Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 115
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Gazing over the golden years of history, Pera Palace Hotel overlooks the magnificent view of the Golden Horn and is located in Tepebaşı district of Pera once known as the “Little Europe”. With its 115 rooms, including 16 suites, retaining the characteristics of the 19th century elegance through historical furniture, the hotel combines refined elegance with state-of the-art technology to fulfill the needs of 21st century travellers. Enjoy a range of revitalized restaurant and bar choices, including the Agatha Restaurant, The Kubbeli Saloon, the French style Patisserie de Pera and the legendary Orient Bar & Terrace and rejuvenate yourself in the soothing atmosphere of Pera Spa. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pera Palas Hotel

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