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“Smells bad..and I mean bad!”

Tarihi Galatasaray Hamami
Ranked #72 of 131 Spas & Wellness in Istanbul
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Galatasaray Hamam, is in the buildings of Galatasaray Mosque - (Kulliye), It was originally built, together with the kulliye itself during the regin on Beyazit II. The construction of Galatasaray Hammam stands on a mysterious story. When the Sultan Beyazit was wandering around the land where todays Galatasaray Lycee and the Galatasaray Hammam stands on now; he sees a hut. This hut belongs to Gul Baba, a respected man of his time. Sultan Beyazit meets this man and asks him "Gul Baba - do you have any wishes?" and Gul Baba wishes the the construction of a school to conquer over the centuries and a Kulliye to have a hammam with a dome. Sultan Beyazit accepts the wish and makes the kulliye be built in 1481. Gul Baba's grave is still in the Kulliye and the Galatasaray Hammam has conquered over the centuries just like he has wished. The editor of the book " History of Galatasaray", Fethi Isfendiyaroglu, states that the Galatasaray Hammam has served the students, during his education. Thus he says, as a student of Galatasaray Lycee "Before, during our times, there was hammam service every morning, the students were gathered in their dormitories every morning and taken to Galatasaray Hammam, next to the garden of the school. When the students were in the bath, the door of the hammam was closed and no other customers were let in. The Galatasaray Hammam, adressing the centuries, have served many pashas, muslim judges ( kadi ), and grand viziers and have participated in the pure lifes of these people. Galatasaray Hammam, with the heritage of the past, is also modern, both in the quality of its services and the hospitality of its staff.
Level Contributor
16 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Smells bad..and I mean bad!”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 30, 2013 via mobile

Just don't go here. Staff so rude and pushy. They didn't realise I could speak Turkish and were saying rude things about the tourists who came in, about them not tipping etc. Ridiculous prices. Mould and smelling of number 2s in the hamam. I'm serious, I tried splashing water everywhere to get the smell out but it appeared to been engrained in the stone and was so offensive I spent a lot less time than normal there. Not sure about the male section.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Ashlee D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GalatasarayH, Halkla İlişkiler Müdürü at Tarihi Galatasaray Hamami, responded to this review, January 13, 2016
Your comments are important to us all. Thank you .
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139 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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NYC
Level Contributor
15 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Interesting experience”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 26, 2013

I have never had a Turkish bath before, so I am not sure what to compare it to. We were enthusiastically recommended this place by a few locals, so we thought this would be a good choice. It is not as decadent looking on the outside as others that I've seen pictures of. There are separate entrances for men and women. The woman's side is rather simple looking. We were told to change into our towels in our little rooms, for which they gave us keys to lock our belongings. We kept our bathing suits on under our towels. We were told to go into the main room to perspire for about 15-20 minutes. Then some half-naked women came inside to give us our washes. My lady was very upset that I had my bikini top on, so she started yanking it off and it was a bit hard to take off and you can see her visibly getting upset that I just ripped if off any way I could. She clearly saw that I was not comfortable but she did not care. You should just check your inhibitions at the door. Anyway, let's proceed. There was a lot of ordering around, motioning and pulling. I was not surprised by this as I have read about this before. It was definitely impersonal and not as pampering as I would have liked it. At one point, she covered my entire face in soap to the point that I could not breathe. However, at the end of the day the whole experience was oddly refreshing and rejuvenating. I would actually do it again. I am not sure if I would recommend this place, but it was a total of 90 liras for about an hour of service.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank armanicoco
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GalatasarayH, Halkla İlişkiler Müdürü at Tarihi Galatasaray Hamami, responded to this review, January 21, 2016
Thank you for your commet .
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
edinburgh
Level Contributor
165 reviews
83 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
“hot and physical”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 14, 2013

A trip to a real Turkish Bath was on our list, with the ladies going to one part of the building and the gents going elsewhere. I have endured many rough encounters in my life, having enjoyed a sporting lifestyle but, this was a one off. Given the manner of the massage! and the heat of the baths, recovery took a longer than expected but was worth it, I think? If you like a bit of physical you must make the effort.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank philipsmith
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GalatasarayH, Halkla İlişkiler Müdürü at Tarihi Galatasaray Hamami, responded to this review, January 21, 2016
Thank you for your commet .
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
11 reviews
5 attraction reviews
“Bad bad bad experience!!!”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 12, 2013

We chose the exclusive Pasha-experience with scrub,soapmassage (15min) and Oil-massage(20min) for 150 TL prperson, aproxximately 1,5 hour.
I was send to the Ladies section Down the street, Where I was greeted by 4 women one more commanding than the other. I was placed in the (beautiful and clean ) bath-area-waiting arrund 10 minuttes for My bath. Then I was commanded by a lady to lay ón the Block Where she scrubbed me very Quick. Then she threw some water at me, and Them she gave me the soapmassage-lasting maximum 3 minutes. Then I was told to lay Down and "just sleep madame" naked ón the mamor-Block. i tried to let My self smile over theese commanding Ladies-looping forward to the last part:Oil-massage!! which lasted 4 minutes and was absolutely horrible!!! The lady did Not know anything about basic anatomy, and started pressing/massaging directly ón My spine in a very Quick , rough and stressfull attitude ..
After only 50 minutes I was done, and all 4 Ladies Were having a break and smoking..

I Will Not recommend anyone to there... It's really Not worth the money!! Lotsof other Nice and cheap hamams in town!

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
Thank Nannakaad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GalatasarayH, Halkla İlişkiler Müdürü at Tarihi Galatasaray Hamami, responded to this review, January 13, 2016
Your comments are important to us all. Thank you .
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
49 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
“Bad experience for the money - don't believe the hotel recommendations!”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 5, 2013

We wanted to have a traditional Hammam (Turkish bath) experience whilst in Istanbul and both of us have had Hammams in the past (in Turkey and outside). Our hotel management recommended this venue and being the 'oldest spa in Istanbul' (1481) we thought it would probably be a good bet. Why oh why did we not double-check on Tripadvisor before taking their word for it I will never know?!
The venue is old fashioned and that is to some extent to be expected being the oldest in the city but it has not been maintained very well at all. The baths themselves are OK, but not great. The changing rooms and that sort of area look like they belong in a 1960s office complex - tired, dated, grubby and not at all relaxing. The massage area was a little like the Matron's office - tucked around the corner and I could hear the chatter from downstairs as there was no music playing or the like...giant TV showing horse racing if you prefer?
The bathing attendant was very rough as has already been mentioned - I could just about tolerate this - in any case if I was to complain I reckon he could have popped my eyeballs with his very strong thumbs. The Turkish bath experience was actually OK, the massage was not that great so if you do go just go for one of the lower packages. This brings me to value for money - rip off is my view. For example, we had a similar experience when we went to Marrakech for a similar price but there the surroundings were plush, well maintained, had soft music, relation areas, a relaxation pool, soft drinks, pleasant staff, etc, etc.
My wife also went and she mentioned that the female attendants in her Hammam were all totally naked, which was a bit of surprise. She felt that the staff were nice ladies but the overall experience was not a good one unfortunately.
I did feel clean and to some extent revived after the experience and so I can't say that it was terrible but it was poor as the surroundings were not that pleasant, the massage was rough and it did not represent very good value for money by any means.
I would not therefore recommend you go here...unless they give a hefty discount and you just go for the bath experience without massage unfortunately.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Garforth3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GalatasarayH, Halkla İlişkiler Müdürü at Tarihi Galatasaray Hamami, responded to this review, January 22, 2016
Your comments are important to us all. Thank you .
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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