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“Don't expect to find what you see in the holiday brochure”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of Hotel Beyaz Saray

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Hotel Beyaz Saray
Ranked #250 of 1,129 Hotels in Istanbul
Certificate of Excellence
Hesdin L'abbe
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Don't expect to find what you see in the holiday brochure”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 2, 2008

Both the hotel's own website and holiday brochures feature the attractive mosque across the street as viewed from one of the hotel's bedrooms. If you're British, however, you are far more likely to be allocated a room that overlooks a central lobby and offers no views of the hotel's exterior. When we stayed there, of 97 rooms in this Spanish run hotel, 90 of them were occupied by people from Spain. I'm not suggesting that the other guests were anything other than courteous and pleasant, but it stands to reason that Spanish visitors are more likely to be allocated the best rooms by a Spanish run company.
I'd read good reports via Trip Ad. of the hotel food before booking and I would confirm that breakfast is varied and satisfying. We had two evening meals in the hotel and these were also of a reasonable standard. The staff, contrary to what I'd read, are very helpful and speak English to an acceptable standard.
One big drawback of the Barcelo Saray if you stay, as we did, in a room overlooking the lobby is that there is constant noise that goes on well into the early hours. Voices of those in the lobby seem to be amplified as if in an echo chamber . Our room was particularly dark, even when it was bright and sunny outside (see picture). I didn't mind the early morning call to prayer from the mosque. This was a cultural feature of the country and we soon got used to it.
We booked our hotel through Cresta City Breaks and paid in advance for transport from the airport to our hotel. We were disappointed to find that, upon our arrival, this had not been arranged. Our alternative means of transport was provided by a hire company based at the airport at a charge of 50 Turkish Lira. We had a lunatic driver thrown in for good measure. How we got to the hotel in one piece I'll never know. If going again, I'd certainly ensure that transport from the airport to the hotel was organised and confirmed.
As for Istanbul, it is definitely worth a visit. One sees sights - men carrying huge loads on their backs or in handcarts - that disappeared in Britain almost a century ago. While visitors to the Grand Bazaar are constantly approached by would-be sellers, they are courteous and will leave you alone if met with a polite but firm "No, thanks." We bought one item in the Bazaar, after which the trader bought us lunch and arranged free delivery back to our hotel so that we could continue sightseeing. Most people are very friendly. The Bosphorus is the maritime equivalent of the M25 motorway, but with a magical quality. Avoid tourist restaurants. There are good restaurants offering meals that the locals use at a fraction those charged at the rip-off restaurants along the lower tier of the Karakoy Bridge.

  • Liked — location/ food/ places of interest nearby
  • Disliked — Noisy, dark room if allocated in internal aspect room
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank Jonathan28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (77)
Date | Rating
  • Arabic first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Italian first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Colchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 12, 2008

I took a group of seven to Isanbul for six nights following on from seven nights in Anatolia. I wanted an hotel in town within walking distance of main attractions. This hotel on Ordu Caddesi was ideal with the University, bus station, Beyazit Mosque, the Beyazit Gate to the Kapali Carsi just across the road and the University Staion of the modern tramway just outside.
This modern hotel is very well appointed and furnished and very efficiently managed. The passenger activated elevators and the Otis lifts are impressive. The latter are the best designed and fastest lifts I have come across.
Good points. Locked baggage room, digital safes in rooms, help with baggage, well dressed friendly staff and English newspapers. Buffet breakfasts were excellent.
Bad points. Bathroom shelves far too small. Cheapest housewine £20.00 a bottle. Table d'hote four course dinners were unimaginative and often badly presented. The menu for the day was never published or displayed.
I would stay here again but on a B&B basis as the evening meals were dismal and expensive especially as there are at least fifty places to eat within easy walking distance which are atmospheric and much cheaper.

  • Liked — Well designed and furnished.
  • Disliked — lack of shelf space in bathroom
  • Stayed October 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank FoREM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 21, 2008

We stayed at Barcelo Saray for one night from 10th to 11th August. The hotel looked impressive & the rooms are spacious & well designed. Unfortunately, the cleanliness is not so good. There were only 2 pillows on our king-size bed, so we took the other 2 pillows from the cupboards to use.

Even though both these pillows were wrapped in plastic & we just checked in (late 10pm), we realized that both pillows smelt of sweat. We also found hairs of the previous room occupants in the bedding. We were too tired to complain as we spent a whole day travelling & it was already 10pm, so we slept in the dirty sheets.

The hotel also did not allow us a late check-out the next day even though we checked in at 10pm the night before, and our flight only departs at 11.25pm the next day. When we asked for a one hour extension, they also did not agree to it.

We probably won't stay here again, even though the location was very good - only 2 minutes walk to the Grand Bazaar.

  • Liked — Great location.
  • Disliked — Not clean.
  • Stayed August 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank mramo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Switzerland
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 22, 2008

Let me get to the "pretty good" from the title first. The service in the restaurant was good, quick, efficient and friendly. This was not the case in the bar next to the lobby, one should opt for the rooftop restaurant if one wants to eat in the hotel.

The facilities were very well appointed, the whole hotel is very modern in terms of design and furniture. Beds are comfortable and the rooms are clean. If there is one negative issue I would say it's the missing space to put things in the bathrooms, e.g. shaver, cremes, etc..

The location of the hotel is excellent, 5min walking to the Grand Bazar. A tramstation is next to the hotel, so it's very easy to get into all parts of the city within minutes, the Dolmabahce Palace for example, even though it's not worth visiting, is 10 to 15min by tram.

All in all I think that the hotel is very nice, it get's 4 stars from me because it is officially a 4 star hotel and offers everything it is supposed to offer. I don't give more because there is nothing that is extraordinary in terms of service or facilites, it's simply well made. If you're visiting Istanbul for the first time or want to stay on the Golden Horn, this is one of the places to be.

  • Liked — Design and comfort
  • Disliked — Not enough space in the bathrooms (tables, etc.)
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank goetz_r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
131 reviews
90 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 150 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 22, 2008

We looked around for a reasonable hotel in Istanbul and found quite a few (the Marmara Pera etc). However, we waited until a week before we left to book and all prices shot up - doubling in some cases. We found the Barcelo Saray and it looked pretty good. The reviews on tripadvisor sounded great too so we gave it a shot.

Location... The hotel is in the old part of town and is perfectly located for seeing the Grand Bazaar, the Hagia Sofia, the Blue Mosque etc. You're within walking distance of all the major sites - and the sea too. The hotel's website makes the claim that it's 200m from the Grand Bazaar - I think it's way closer actually (even better). The tram is right in front of the hotel and you're not bang in the middle of a tourist trap so the taxis won't rip you off.

The hotel is around 30 minutes from the airport, which was easy. We stayed 3 nights so qualified for the free airport pickup which was awesome. On the way back the taxi cost YTL30.

Facilities... The hotel has such a strange lay-out, but it is pretty good. Some of the rooms face inwards and their windows open into a central, covered courtyard. Glad we didn't have one of these. We were at the back of the hotel and faced the street behind. The views from the front of the hotel are much better.

Food... A buffet breakfast is included, but was quite disappointing. It tried to be more than a continental breakfast but let itself down I think. We arrived at around 10 each morning and most of the hot selection had ran out. The hot food choices were quite strange too (noodles with meat, deep fried bread, boiled egg, fried egg, etc). However, I'm comparing this to places we visit in Thailand each year - hotels I'd visit just for the amazing breakfasts! Realistically speaking the food was good.

Staff... The staff were great. They were all really helpful and friendly. They should come to London and train our hotels...

Rooms... Our room was a good size. It was really clean and modern. The minibar was well-stocked (although expensive... the cans aren't marked so you can replace them if you need to). The bed was comfortable. The bathroom was huge... and modern. There were plenty of channels available on TV, but when we turned ours on, it was always on full volume - very strange.

Noise... We were in a room at the back of the hotel and it was really quiet. The whole hotel seemed like it was empty - which it wasn't. No noise problems here at all!

Decor... I liked the overall feel of the hotel. The colour scheme was good. I liked the carpets quite a lot.

Guests... The hotel seems to cater for tourists from Spain and Portugal, however, everything was in English - and the staff spoke more English than anything else. There were a few groups from Spain when we were there - and a big one from the US. However, the groups weren't too much and the majority of guests were couples or families.

One last thing... We're a gay couple and were given a double bed without even asking for it. At no point in the registration process do I remember requesting one either. This was a really nice surprise - not something I expected!

I hadn't heard of the Bacelo chain before, and they were heavily into promoting all their other properties around the hotel. I'd try them again for sure.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — Breakfast
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank moaksey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reading, Berkshire
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 21, 2008

I stayed at the Barcelo Saray last week for 3 nights, we booked a triple room direct with the company as they had a free tansfer offer on if booked direct. I requested a room with a view of the mosque - which we pleasantly got! I was extremely impressed with the staff at the hotel reception desk - we where greeted warmly even though we were late for our transfer by nearly an hour! The hotel staff helped us the following day with directions and booked any trips that we wanted to do - we had leaflets already and the hotel called and booked it for us - Bosphorus cruise and open bus tour.

Excellent location - 7-10 min walk into Sultanahmet and the area felt very safe, I was a little anxious as we were 3 ladies traveling alone but we did not have any problems at all - even walking back to the hotel at night after 11pm after a meal out.

We managed to get a pretty good rate on the room as we booked at least 2 months in advance - 3 nights cost 349euros for a triple plus the free transfer. Although a taxi from the airport should cost you no more that 30 lira.

I would def stay here again and have & will recommend it to any of my family or friends planning to travel to Istanbul.

  • Liked — Service and location
  • Disliked — nothing!
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank Naznini
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Adelaide, South Australia
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 8, 2008

My friend and I stayed in the Barcelo Saray Hotel for 8 nights. The room was very comfortable but lacked coffee making facilities. The bathroom was clean, spacious and well equipped.
The breakfast each morning was buffet style and was sumptuous. The breakfast room overlooked a beautiful mosque and the food and coffee was plentiful, fresh and delicious. An eclectic range of soft music was played during breakfast. This ranged from classical music to gentle rock and roll.

The staff were efficient and always helpful in relation to any need eg ironing, laundry, ordering transport and any minor maintenance. Our safe was fixed soon after reporting that it was faulty.

Internet was available and free of charge. This hotel provided excellent access to all the wonders of Istanbul ie walking distance to major tourist sites.

In the evening, for an hour each night, lovely piano music wafted through the hotel via a pianist, playing a grand piano on the first floor, where one could also have a pleasant drink.
The food in the Bistro was also excellent, along with the service from the waiters and barmen.

We wished that we could have taken the Barcelo Saray around Turkey with us, as we truly missed the comfort , the breakfast and staff of this hotel.

  • Liked — spacious room, clean well equipped bathroom, great breakfast, access to best of Istanbul, good staff
  • Disliked — no coffee/tea making facilities, lack of available ironing board and iron. Service available at cost.
  • Stayed May 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank almondblossom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Beyaz Saray

Property: Hotel Beyaz Saray
Address: Mimar Kemalettin Mah. Yeniceriler Cad. No:77 Beyazit, Fatih, Istanbul 34130, Turkey
Location: Turkey > Istanbul
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#159 Romantic Hotel in Istanbul
#179 Luxury Hotel in Istanbul
#187 Family Hotel in Istanbul
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Beyaz Saray 4*
Number of rooms: 96
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Barcelo Saray Hotel Istanbul
Barcelo Hotel Istanbul
Barcelo Hotel Saray

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