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Hot List 2009
Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosphorus, Istanbul
28 Çırağan Caddesi
Tel: 90 212 381 4000
This beautifully renovated Ottoman palacesister property to the Four Seasons in historic Sultanahmetis on the teeming-with-life Bosphorus, well-sited in Besiktas, between Dolmabahçe Palace and the nightlife scene of Ortaköy. In this serene compound, guests are buffered from the crowds and the traffic (no doubt this is helped by the gated entrance and the fact the building is below street level). And once you walk through the foyer, the Bosphorus and the bridge are before you in full panorama. There's a large waterside pool with cabanas, tea service, and a 22,600-square-foot spa complete with a hammam. The 166 rooms are soothingly decorated with Ottoman-inspired flourishes and have extended three-sided divan windows, although not all rooms have Bosphorus views. The hotel's location leaves guests a bit taxi-dependent, but if you're finding it difficult to reach the historic sites, hire a captained boat. Though you will miss some of the finer details, a tour from the water means you won't ever have to stand in line or pay an entrance fee.
Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.