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Serene Hotel Istanbul
Ranked #448 of 1,149 Hotels in Istanbul
Changhua County, Taiwan
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Tripadvisor reviews don't work this time”
Reviewed 31 May 2013

I always count on tripadvisor reviews when booking hotels. I regret to say that tripadvisor reviews don't provide a fair assessment of this hotel. I will talk about the positive sides of the hotel, then the negative sides on the basis of my 5-day stay there.

The advantages of the hotel are that it is in general clean and that it is strategically located on the Independent Avenue. When you walk out of the hotel, there are numerous shops in the neighborhood.

Probably the main disadvantage of the hotel also comes from its location. Being a tourist street, Independent Avenue is bustling which also affects this hotel. You need to be able to sleep when the neighboring pubs are playing loud music. The noises go on after midnight. Even I was able to fall into sleep, I was waken up every night (ex: 3 am, 4 am) by the noises of the pubs or people's conversations in the neighborhood.

The hotel is also very cramped. Night shift staff needs to sleep on the sofa of the tiny lobby (not sure if it is more than 10 square meters). There is not even a kitchen in the hotel. The room is so miserably small that there is no place for a desk and a chair. I ended up sitting in bed doing everything. Also, there is no elevator, so if you have a big piece of luggage, good luck!

While the Independent Avenue is full of tourists, it is not a must-see in Istanbul. Most of the tourist attractions are in the old town. So you need to travel to the old town every day and public transportation turns out to be important. Sadly, there is no convenient public transportation at the door step. The only tram runs on the Independent Avenue is for tourism purposes, and is not very reliable. You can walk downhill for about 10-15 minutes to take the tram to the old town, but it's hard to walk uphill back to the hotel because the lane is very steep. I always take the tram to Kabatas and from there take Tunel to the Taksim Square, from where I walk for another 10-15 minutes back to the hotel. Why don't I just stay in the old town?

I also feel that the hotel is not accommodating. When I check in a hotel which I don't prepay,
I always negotiate with them to pay when I check out. This is because I can use all remaining local cash on hotel expenses without having to exchange it back to Euro or USD. In general, hotels understand this and are willing to do it. This hotel, however, insisted that I pay full amount on the time of my arrival. Even I proposed that I pay for the first three nights on the first day, and pay for the last two nights on the 3rd day, they still didn't agree. This is not good service from my point of view.

Overall, I won't go back again and will not recommend it to my friends.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Travel_junkie294265
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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171 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (21)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Cork, Ireland
Level 4 Contributor
14 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 May 2013 via mobile

I used TripAdvisor to find a centrally located hotel in Istanbul. Thanks to the other TripAdvisor contributors, I found a little gem in the Supreme Hotel. Regular visitors to Istanbul had suggested an area called Taksim as a base. The Serene hotel is just 3 minutes easy walk from Taksim square.
On arrival I received a friendly greeting from Aren - he's the guy in the photo with me outside the hotel sign. The hotel itself is a little difficult to find as the entrance is on a pedestrian walkway off one of old Istanbul's pedestrian thoroughfares. Here's a tip - phone the hotel when you are close - Aren met my taxi. Or book the hotel courtesy pickup.
While room 201 was a little narrow, it was more than compensated for with the balcony view on the bustling street scene below. A great way to feel the atmosphere of this tourist mecca but the double glazed balcony door can be locked for a peaceful rest. I have included photos from it. Room 202 has the same views but has more room space. The rooms are newly refurbished and the housekeepers do an impeccable job. It includes all little extras - toiletries including toothpaste and brush, hair dryer, teas made, loads of TV channels in multiple languages, fluffy towels, spare pillows, a safe, lots of sockets for chargers.....
The hotel offers great value when compared with their surrounding competitors. Try to give yourself a full week to explore all that Istanbul has to offer. I did not mind paying a little extra to get the best evening that Istanbul has to offer on the Bosporus river. As recommended by Aren, TURNA Bosphorus dinner cruise lived up to expectations with a good tour guide (English speaking only), hotel pick- up and drop off, unlimited local alcohol and soft drinks, a good meal, traditional Turkish musical performance, belly dancers ( I preferred the female but the male belly dancers were a bit of fun! ). They were great at getting audience participation.

The Serene hotel is within 1 minutes walk of hundreds of shops ranging from designer labels to local souks. The place is teeming with restaurants, pubs and clubs. Remember that Istanbul is the creator of kebabs and their establishments are a must - completely different and 100 times better that the fake copies around the world. I have included some photos of a few near the Serene and $10 will get you a great meal.
My first time here but i will return - Istanbul definitely ranks among my favourite cities along with SF, Paris, Edinburgh and NY,NY. Rome is still on my bucket list. Enjoy !!!!

Stayed May 2013, travelled solo
Helpful?
3 Thank Jimwalshireland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 21 May 2013 via mobile

I stayed at Serene Hotel in Feb 2013 with my best friend and we had a really good experience. Aren and Orhun were winderdul hosts and made sure that we had everything we needed in our rooms. They also knew what to recommend us in order to have the best experiences in Instanbul. They sure go out of their way to make sure that you enjoy your time in Instanbul. Hospitality is their forte!
The hotel is located on the Taksim Street which is so conveniently situated near the main touristic areas, itself being one of the most famous places to see while in Instanbul! Full of shops, restaurants, boutiques and so much more!

  • Stayed February 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Yogabitza
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Richmond, Virginia
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 May 2013 via mobile

When we were in Istanbul this May, we stayed at the Serene Hotel based on positive reviews here, and because it was right on the pedestrianized Istakkal Cadessi in the middle of the Galata neighborhood. While the street can get packed and noisy on the weekends at night, it was very convenient close enough to Taksim Square, and a lot of little alleys with unique shops and eateries. Our room had a lovely balcony that overlooked all the action below, perfect for people watching at night while eating fresh fish sandwiches from the Galata bridge area. The WiFi was strong and the room was consistently clean. All the staff were very helpful and nice as well.

Helpful?
1 Thank imnotthewalrus
This review is the subjective opinion of an individual traveller and not of TripAdvisor LLC nor of its partners.
New York City, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 20 May 2013

We were staying there for 4 nights and we had a wonderful time there! hotel has everything you need for a weekend in Istanbul. large and comfortable room, lcd tv, air con. The location couldn't have been better, with many attractions as well as nice restaurants, bars within walking distance.
We will definately choose this hotel for our next visit to Istanbul.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank paul d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
durban
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 May 2013

i have just returned from a holiday in turkey and I stayed at the serene hotel , I must tell you I was blown away with the service I received from them they went out of their way to assist me with info on tours , eating places , travel arrangements , transport back to the airport , location of the hotel is great it is near all the famous sites i.e. sultanahmet mosque , ayasofia , topkapi palace , gallata tower on top of being right in the middle of the hussle and bussle of istiklal avenue which is great for eating places and shopping for the enthusiast , I must single out special praise for the night staff guy ARAN , he always greeted you with a smile always helpful even when he could understand or help he would try his best to assist in what ever way he could , same goes for the guy in the morning ORHN , they really added a lot more of comfort to my trip to turkey the rooms were clean and nice , air conditioning , satellite , everything was just brilliant , I would like to finish of by saying the next time I am in turkey I will definitely stay at the serene hotel . (SHIRAZ KARODIA - SOUTH AFRICA)

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank shiraz k
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 9 May 2013

I stayed here for a week in mid-April with my brother and three friends. Although the double economy room was a bit on the small side, I found Serene Hotel to be very clean, modern, and affordable given the location. The front desk staff were very helpful and accommodating as we needed to book a room at the last minute for a friend, and they also gave us good recommendations for hammams and helped us to make a reservation at a restaurant. The hotel is literally two steps from the huge pedestrian-only Istiklal avenue, and a twenty-minute saunter to the tram to the old city and the Galata Bridge. Although I was worried about the noise, it was not a problem - our room faced an alley. But bring earplugs just in case because on Saturday night there was loud music.
Overall I would highly recommend this hotel for young couples/young people/budget travelers who want to stay in a nice, no-frills boutique hotel rather than a hostel.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Elodie S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Serene Hotel Istanbul

Property: Serene Hotel Istanbul
Address: Asmali Mescit mah. Istiklal cad. Tutuncu cikmazi no: 4/1 | Beyoglu, Istanbul 34430, Turkey
Region: Turkey > Istanbul > Beyoglu
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #448 of 1,149 Hotels in Istanbul
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:2 star — Serene Hotel Istanbul 2*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Serene Hotel Istanbul is perfectly located within a short walking distance to Taksim square. All rooms are equipped with a king-size bed or two twin beds, private bathrooms, safe-deposit box, air conditioning and LCD television. ... more   less 
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