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“The must see item in the 10 ten things to do in the life time”

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Ciragan Palace Kempinski Istanbul
Ranked #55 of 1,134 Hotels in Istanbul
Certificate of Excellence
Istanbul
Level Contributor
68 reviews
48 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“The must see item in the 10 ten things to do in the life time”
Reviewed 23 April 2014

On the edge of the Bosphorus, this Kempinski Hotel deserves 10 stars whereas the max is 5 in the standardization. The Building, the view, the hospitality, the all on all are outstanding. The pool between the hotel and the Bosphorus is a spot where no one can find any other place on earth. Bathrooms needs an updgrade with a shower tube in addition to the bath tube.

Room Tip: Junior suite facing the Bosphorus and the historic palace.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Haluk B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Nagpur, India
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 April 2014

Didn't really get the opportunity to stay at the hotel, but was there for a conference. Based on the bank of the Bospurous Bay seperating, Europe from Asia, the interior was absolutely sumptuous and when sleet started falling by midnight, the view of the bosphorous bridge and the bay was like fairytale.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled on business
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
1 Thank meetrajat_uk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 April 2014

The Ciragan Palace Kempinski will help you understand a bit of Ottoman splendor as if from a sultan's perspective. This has to be a dream of a lifetime, staying a week here at the Palace as my wife and I did. This was three weeks ago but we still wake up thinking we're in that ultra large kingsize bed with the softest, finest sheets and pillows and one of the best sleeps remembered, then having complimentary tea brought every morning to the room with baklava (one special patisserie chef makes only baklava!) before going down to the most sumptuous breakfast every morning overlooking the Bosphorus in the Laledan Lounge inside or outside surrounded by tulips.

From the moment we arrived with a private check-in with a glass of white wine and strawberries and were taken to our room by a hostess, the experience was peerless. This was followed by a special private tour of the Bosphorus in a luxury yacht that was moored to the hotel dock. This is the way a legendary five star luxury hotel in Istanbul should be, even exceeding expectations like it did the first time I visited a few years ago at the palace. The huge flower displays in every lobby area and the blue and white arrays of Iznik tiles everywhere made one feel this was another part of the Topkapi Palace. The room amenities were wonderful as well, from bath to bed and we had a choice of three different types of bed pillows to pamper us; with a separate small entrance room for luggage and a balcony with table and chairs outside. The morning after we arrived the managing director of the Kempinski for Turkey came to greet us and the Concierge services were unparalleled in their helpfulness for every possible wish including visits to the Istanbul Archaeological Museums, Hagia Sophia the Sultanahmed Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace and Gardens, Bosphorus cruises or other palaces.

The luxury shops in the palace hotel could accommodate every whim, for a price of course, if you wish a silk rug or a ruby necklace, and the palace restaurant breakfast had more juices than anyone could drink, from pomegranate and cherry to celery with apple and cucumber, and the countless hot or cold options could partner with custom omelets or many other possibilities. But the palace hot chocolate was unforgettable - a glass of steaming milk filled with sticks of chocolate that would melt down, both dark and (although I don't usually prefer milk chocolate) a milk chocolate that was subtle and creamy with added flavors and spices like nutmeg. This hot chocolate simply couldn't be improved on, nor could any other breakfast. One needs at least an hour for breakfast here. One of our friends who stayed here had to leave at 2 am in the morning and the palace prepared a special breakfast in a basket for the early departure.

Perhaps the ultimate Ciragan Palace experience is not only visiting the adjoining old palace with its crystal balustrades and about the largest Venetian crystal chandelier you'll likely ever see - a twenty-foot wide pendulous crown over the marble staircases - many of which staircases are illuminated through the translucent marble all over the palace, but then also having a sultan's dinner there in the Tugra Restaurant with its incredible Ottoman cuisine. Not only do the entrees come in special silver Ottoman turban-like helmet covers, but also the sauces are matchless. We loved the lemon-olive sauces on the stuffed chard with fig, eggplant, zucchini blossom with sweet onion, pine nuts, sour cherries, currants and fresh herbs. The entree with its pomegranate-onion reduction relish to go with the lamb or beef kulbasti was stunning as was the pomegranate and raki sorbet. Every night we could, my wife and went to the palace's infinity pool on the Bosphorus and swam and soaked in the rising steam before returning to the spa for the jacuzzi with a cool glass of lemon water. My wife and I have just tried last week to make the pomegranate onion relish from several real pomegranates and sweet onions now back here at home near Stanford, and it has to be reduced down for hours but is a fresh reminder of the incredible palace cuisine.

A must if you stay here is to also arrange a bath and massage at the sultan's Turkish bath, the one from the 16th century in the Sutanahmed district adjoining the Hippodrome park carpeted with tulips with the Byzantine old city, preferably after visiting many of the other great sites in Istanbul. Even if it's not one's first Istanbul visit, repeat visits as we made were just as magnificent when one can walk again around all the inside perspectives of the Hagia Sophia and the Sultanahmed Blue Mosque. Imagine the polyphony of the slow Byzantine hymns written for the Hagia Sophia with echoes so delayed it could take 10-13 seconds to hear the harmonies across the great dome. One must go again to the Grand Bazaar and the Spice Bazaar but also spend time at the Istanbul Archaeological Museum complex, the Topkapi Palace and Gardens with its treasuries (one must certainly see the Kasikci Elmasi Spoonmaker's Diamond, of course, which this reviewer has written about in a forthcoming commissioned book on the history of diamonds, rupees, sapphires, topaz, emeralds, etc.) and the near endless gem-studded Damascene steel engraved swords and vessels. Then to see the Sultan's Harem is to be glad you're not a concubine's son in this dangerous place of intrigue where to survive as a male, it was better to be a eunuch. Back to the best place for a Turkish Bath, the elegant 16th century Agyasofya Hurrem Sultan Hamami (from 1556), is the one Istanbul experience not to forego. After steaming, being covered in soapy foam scented with roses in a lather a foot high and being massaged, rubbed and pomaded, sitting on the cushions under the great wooden balustrades with a glass of cold pomegranate and cherry juice, you could almost float away on a flying carpet. Overall, thanks to the perfect Ciragan Palace staff who can answer any question and having as a guide Fatih Copuroglu (fatih@copuroglu.com) who has been a private guide to presidents and prime ministers, our visits to Istanbul cannot be surpassed because of staying a week at the Ciragan Palace Kempinski, one of the world's most magical venues. I was so lucky as this was the second time as a composer I've had a premiere here of a new piece of music, a Dervish Dance, performed and danced to by a real Sufi dervish in Istanbul in a Byzantine cistern (I was a guest of the Turkish Ministry of Culture). To be at this fabulous hotel makes it even more special. How can one stay anywhere else after the Ciragan Palace Kempinski?

Room Tip: The suites or junior suites with Bosphorus on the top (fifth) floor are simply the best.
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Patrick H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Guayaquil, Ecuador
Level Contributor
220 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 April 2014 via mobile

Se ha dan excellent experience eventhought Its an expensive hotel it is worth every penny, The hotel is gorgeous and The palace at The bosforous gives it an enchanted look, you must go to eat at The Restaurant in The palace and Look for a table at The stairs in The balcony with this magical view or hace a drink at The bar near The pool with The palace and The bosforous view. The rooms, lobby and restaurants aré really nice! Great place to Stay!! 100 percent recommended!!

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank BarciMaru
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
55 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 April 2014

It surprises me that it has taken 50 years for me and my wife to come to Istanbul, but well worth the wait. A wonderful wonderful city and the Ciragan Palace reflects the happiness of our stay.
The Hotel
is superbly appointed, positioned on the European side of the Bosphorus, bang on the water.The hotel is not cheap, but for us, good value as it ticked nearly all the boxes for a wonderful week break.

The room.
was on the smoking top 5th floor and although we are not smokers, we were moved here due to a misunderstanding,(in fact there was no double bed in our original room).This is not an issue as the new room 524 was better.
The room was a decent size and had a good view of the Bosphorus.10/10 for the immaculate house keeping and my wife is particular.
We slept well, although the call to early morning prayer did disturb me twice.There were other slightly niggling noise issues ( see tips below )

The Concierges
were plentiful, efficient and arranged much for us, restaurants, attractions, guides and transport. My only issue was that on our Bosphorus boat trip, not cheap at £500 for 2 hours, no one spoke English, so 9./10.

The Restaurants
will be dealt in depth elsewhere but in conclusion.

1. The Tugra.
This is fine dining, excellent fayre, but expensive.
2. Laledan.
The breakfast was good although on certain days food and drink stocks seemed much depleted. Katarina was wonderfully charming as a hostess.
Avoid Laledan for dinner It was expensive, dull and bland.
3.The Gazebo Lounge
We loved the Gazebo lounge for wonderful cakes and pastries.

The Sanitas Spa

was fantastic 10/10. My 3 massages were in my top 10 of all time.My masseuse Nancy from Thailand was brilliant .Her Thai massage, which although at the time left me as if I had just gone 10 rounds with Mike Tyson and driven over by a tank ,saw the next day a rejuvenated and new man, with my stiff back much improved. My wife felt the same and her masseuse Loli receives like wise acclaim.

The Gym adjoined to the spa was fine but as with the hairdressing salon my wife felt they both needed updating.

The Outdoor infinity pool
was truly magnificent. It seemed Olympic in size,it was warm and gave me a thorough early morning workout, setting me up for the day.

The Grounds and Garden
were truly regal and kept as if the Sultan was still in residence.

The Overall Service
was very good and we can't stress enough how friendly and efficient the staff are.

The Ciragan Palace we are told is due for a refurbishment at the end of this year and we can't
wait to return.

Room Tip: As You look from the Sea, I found that the rooms on the extreme right side of the hotel, even though...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank RTGB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Princeton, New Jersey
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviewed 14 April 2014

The hotel is fantastic from the rooms to the conference/ballrooms to the outdoor areas. The view of the Bospherous is amazing and the palace building is an attraction unto itself. I was here for a conference but look forward to visiting again for a personal holiday with my family.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank T D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
london
Level Contributor
25 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 April 2014

A really traditional, old style luxury hotel.
Fabulous views, really nice public rooms, what I would describe as traditional, not faddy or ' designed' guest rooms but just real old fashioned comfort where you can actually work out how to switch off the lights!
The staff are great, really helpful. The doorman really went out of his way to help me when I had a transport problem.
Wouldn't hesitate to recommend it for either leisure or business only thing I would say is that even by 5 star hotel standards the prices of things like drinks/ coffee in the bar are eye watering.

Room Tip: The view of the Bosporus is worth having
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank holsandbus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ciragan Palace Kempinski Istanbul

Property: Ciragan Palace Kempinski Istanbul
Address: Ciragan Caddesi 32 | Besiktas, Istanbul 34349, Turkey
Phone Number:
Region: Turkey > Istanbul > Besiktas
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#11 Business Hotel in Istanbul
#29 Romantic Hotel in Istanbul
#39 Luxury Hotel in Istanbul
#43 Family Hotel in Istanbul
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:5 star — Ciragan Palace Kempinski Istanbul 5*
Number of rooms: 313
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Cıragan Palace Kempinski Istanbul offers the ultimate in luxury and glamour of a genuine Ottoman Palace with its 313 rooms including 22 suites in the hotel and 11 suites in the historical Palace. This 5-star luxury Imperial Palace hotel is located on the shores of the magnificent Bosphorus overlooking the ancient city of Istanbul, provides a one-of-a-kind experience with its historical ambiance and excellent Kempinski service. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ciragan Palace Kempinski Istanbul Hotel Istanbul
Ciragan Palace Kempinski Hotel Istanbul
Istanbul Ciragan Palace Kempinski
Kempinski Istanbul

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