Postcard from G. M., New York, NY
My husband and I and our two children spent the last week in August in Istanbul, staying at the new Four Seasons at the Bosphorus, which I would highly recommend. The hotel is located in an old palace with the guest rooms housed in two new wings. The hotel is right on the river, so it has amazing views, especially from the pool, which has a resorty feel, like you’re in Sardinia or Capri. In the morning, we had guides take us around for sightseeing, and in the afternoon, we mostly lounged by the pool, so it was the perfect combination of culture and relaxing, a resort vacation in the city. I had heard that the original Four Seasons was better situated in terms of sightseeing, but it took us 15 minutes with a cab to get to almost everything, so I thought it was just as convenient.
The rooms are done in the typical Four Seasons style: understated and elegant with big bathrooms and flatscreen televisions. We didn’t have a view of the river but overlooked the front of the palace, so it was also very pretty. We tried several different restaurants in the city, though I have to say that I loved Aqua at the Four Seasons best. You dine sitting right by the river, and my kids loved watching the Bosphorus bridge change colors at night. I can’t say enough about the staff, who went out of their way to make us feel taken care of, especially my children. My daughter, who is ten, and my son, who is seven, loved the kebabs and when they were not on the menu, the kitchen prepared them for us anyway. Overall, you could basically request anything you wanted and the chef would whip it up for you.
The other guests were really international, not just American, so there was a nice vibe. I also appreciated that the hotel is pretty relaxed and low-key and even though everyone looked good, you didn’t have to dress up for dinner. We had dinner one night at the Ciragan Palace and even though it was very good, the atmosphere was a lot more formal. In all, I would highly recommend the Four Seasons Bosphorus to anyone visiting Istanbul.
TIP: The best part of the trip was the tour company New Faces who provided true VIP service for us from the moment we arrived at the airport. We were met by a New Faces guide who took us through immigration, handled the visa details and had us skip all the lines. After a nine hour flight, this was like heaven. I highly recommend their services.
Read a postcard from another member about her family trip to the Four Seasons Bosphorus.