Monday, November 27, 2017

A relaxing holiday at the Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at Bosphorus

The Bosphorus is synonymous with the romance of Istanbul, a city straddling Europe and Asia and yet anchored on the waters that flow in from the Black Sea and eventually rush out to the Sea of Marmara. Right on the Bosphorus, you will find the Four Seasons Istanbul at the Bosphorus, one of the most luxurious hotels in Istanbul.


At the Four Seasons Istanbul at the Bosphorus,
one of the most luxurious hotels in Istanbul


The Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosphorus sits regally like a beautiful lady of the Ottoman Empire, practically a destination in itself, especially for frequent travelers to Istanbul like myself who wish to revisit the city in relaxed style.

I’d been to Turkey many times before; so on this particular trip, all I wanted to do was walk around the old neighborhoods of Galata and Karakoy discovering quirky shops and cool cafes, visit the Istanbul Modern, and then spend the rest of the time on R&R right by one of the most strategic waterways in the world.


At the Four Seasons Istanbul at the Bosphorus,
one of the most luxurious hotels in Istanbul


The convenient location of Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosphorusnear  historic sights of Bosphorus and also comfortably away from the hustle and bustle, is most ideal for a relaxing holiday in Istanbul.


BACK IN TIME


At the Four Seasons Istanbul at the Bosphorus,
one of the most luxurious hotels in Istanbul


For my stay at the Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosphorus, I chose a second floor Palace Bosphorus room which is one of the most attractive rooms in the hotel. Located in the historic main building, a 19th century former Ottoman palace, it still had remnants of its grand old self, with unusually high ceilings and old-fashioned windows facing the Bosphorus so that I could see the Asian side of Istanbul and the Maiden tower in the distance.

Meanwhile the interiors were classic Turkish turn-of-the-century in feel – dark furniture and plush fabrics – although with all the magical gadgets of modern technology.


Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at Bosphorus


THE BEST PART OF THE DAY


Within this oasis, one of my favorite rituals was eating at the delicious breakfast buffet at Aqua, the contemporary Italian restaurant of Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at Bosphorus



Breakfast at the Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at Bosphorus


I began my days in a wonderfully languid fashion at this sleek but cheerful venue, with freshly pressed pomegranate juice and a typical Turkish breakfast of assorted cheeses, clotted cream, olives, honey and breads.


Baklava at the Four Seasons Istanbul at the Bosphorus,
one of the most luxurious hotels in Istanbul

The spa had a wide range of treatments but I just had to book the Turkish hammam experience on one of these spa days, of course. 

This Turkish hammam experience began with a short steam treatment followed by a body scrub, foaming wash and massage that ended just in time for afternoon tea in the hotel gardens where tables are set up right next to the sea so that on a beautifully sunny afternoon this was just about the best place to be in Istanbul.


At the Four Seasons Istanbul at the Bosphorus,
one of the most luxurious hotels in Istanbul

Then, just like the pace of everything else in Istanbul, a city full of moments worth savoring slowly that slip by all too quickly, we were soon reluctantly calling it a day. All the while sitting at the same spot outdoors, afternoon tea seamlessly turned into sunset cocktails; and then darkness crept in and we walked back to Aqua for an authentic Italian dinner of pasta, steaks and gelato cooked by Istanbul's best Italian chef.


At the Four Seasons Istanbul at the Bosphorus,
one of the most luxurious hotels in Istanbul


We’d been so mesmerized by our VIP seat on the grand show that is life on the Bosphorus one of the greatest attractions of Istanbul – that, ironically, the hours had ever so wonderfully slipped by unnoticed. And this is how it was everyday for the rest of our stay as well, until it was time to say goodbye to Istanbul and to the Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosphorus.

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