The Four Seasons Istanbul at Sultanahmet is "heaven on earth". The adventure began with our arrival at Ataturk Airport where we wisely opted to have the hotel send a car for us, and were met by a most welcoming "greeter" who assisted us to the BMW and our driver Ertan. Along the way he graciously gave us a mini tour and answered so many of our questions. As a fine example of the generosity of the impeccable staff, Ertan later guided us to the Whirling Dervish show after he got off of his shift at the hotel. Who does that? I'll tell you who, every team member of the hotel! They become your friends, assisting you with every phase of your trip to Istanbul. Upon entering the flowerful foyer, we were met by Mehmet Nacar, the front desk mgr. who had arranged all of our reservations for restaurants and tours on typed cards in our room (see photo). The hotel itself is full of Ottoman charm, with delicious warm colors throughout and speckled with mounted Turkish tiles along the graceful hallways (see photos). As you enter your room through the large wood doors you find a plush space, our was overlooking the gardens and breakfast area. The bathroom is huge, furnished with tub and separate shower after which you can sink into the luxurious Turkish towels and robes. Five times a day the call to prayer seeps into the window and you know that you are in an exotic land, with a rich culture and great history. In order to facilitate and maximize our time we hired a private guide for 2 days, Seda Karaca came highly recommended and she was a find. The hotel knew her, the shops in the Spice Market and Grand Bazaar knew her, everyone knew her. She accelerated our visits to the sights with no waiting in line. Her tour of the Topkapi Palace was fascinating and detailed. She was a great sport and a lot of fun so try to plan ahead and book her through the hotel concierge. I cannot express to you how helpful the Concierge and reservations dept. were in plannning this holiday. Their attention to detail and professionalism is unmatched. When you book, take advantage of their aid as that is in itself part of the draw to this crown jewel in the Four Seasons realm. Book a breakfast inclusive pkj. and you will enjoy a full buffet with not only American eggs and meat dishes, but an array of breads, olives, honeys, 10 types of cheese, and homemade preserves (try the pomegranate jelly!). I was so impressed one morning when Farkan took the time to explain the origins of the honeycomb hanging on wood stretchers, it was another example of how the hotel is managed and run. And who is at the helm of this amazing oasis? It is FELIX MURILLO, the General Mgr. Twice during our stay we crossed paths. First when he made it a point to introduce himself to us and then upon our departure, as we were leaving for further travels, we saw him again. The goodbye from this kind, generous, and special group of the Four Seasons family was so touching. Mr. Murillo has refined the art of hotel management and I cannot express to any potential visitor to Istanbul that this is THE place to stay when visiting. P.S. Thanks for the birthday cake! (They think of everything)!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
31 March 2012
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You are so generous with us. I can wait to print your note and bring it to Ertan, he is going to love it. Well and to all the team.
It is very special.
Thank you very much again,
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC