The Radisson Blu has an awesome location in one of the nicest areas of Istanbul. Nearby are plenty of shops, restaurants, and street vendors, in a much more relaxed setting than in the busy Bazar district. We arrived a bit too early for check in (9am) and had to wait 4 hours for our room to be made available. (It would have been faster but we had a Jr. Suite and they only have a few of them.) Meanwhile, we sat outside and admired to view of the waterway and the chaos of shipping. We also had lunch in the hotel lobby bar, as the hotel restaurant was serving a late Turkish breakfast (Sat and Sun only) till 2pm. I had the hamburger sliders and my other half the organic veggie sandwich. Hers was more plentiful than mine, but both were ok. Though, food and drink at the hotel are at a premium price (we were not aware of the local restaurants yet) and not as good as what is available nearby.
When we finally got into our nonsmoking room, it reeked of pipe smoke. At first we thought it was just a cultural thing and wouldn't be all that bad, but we eventually had to have the pillows and comforter replaced. And, the following day they de-smoked the room. We were offered a room exchange, but by this time we had already opened the bags and thrown our stuff all around, so moving would have been a pain in the backside. Major kudos to the nighttime housekeeper. He did not speak a lick of English, but did his all to help correct the situation.
The staff was very friendly, helpful, and informative. However, there was one exception, the mini-bar guy! Two hours after getting into the room, we had showered and were attempting to nap… then comes a knock at the door. The min-bar guy wanted to inventory the mini-bar and was very rude about doing so. I informed him that we were napping, but he got very rude, so I let the guy in after my other half covered up in the bed. Of course he had to take two trips in the room and each time taking a long look at the lump in the bed. I seriously wanted to punch this guy out, but thoughts of Midnight Express came to mind.
I would consider staying at this hotel again, minus the mini-bar guy and the smoky room. The view is awesome, staff excellent, and location very nice. Though, it is a bit of a distance from the Bazar and taxi can be expensive. To the Bazaar we paid less than 20 lira and returning to the hotel 100 lira. I suggest you time your taxi trips to avoid traffic patterns or learn to figure out the boat ferry schedules...
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Enjoy sumptuous lodging and city proximity at this stylish hotel in Istanbul. Its Bosphorus location is near a variety of transport options as well as attractions like Taksim Square and exciting nightlife destinations. The 120 rooms and suites are stylishly decorated and provide thoughtful touches like Free high-speed, wireless Internet. Savour delicious Turkish cuisine at StarBoard Restaurant, and then head to Cruise Lounge Bar for a glamorous evening sipping drinks. Both venues overlook the Bosphorus Strait, giving you a memorable dining experience. Relax at the hotel's on-site wellness centre, which includes a Turkish sauna. For efficient events against the backdrop of the scenic strait, the Pupa Terrace features modern equipment and a great outdoor locale. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Radisson Blu Bosphorus Hotel, Istanbul Hotel Istanbul
- Radisson Istanbul
- Istanbul Radisson