Few weeks ago, our team were invited to attend the World Tourism Forum in Istanbul. Shangri-la Bosphorus has warmly welcomed us on our first night in Istanbul. In my years of experience working in the hospitality industry, I have never yet encountered a Shangri-la welcome. There was nothing like it! You can also check the recent price for this property on their website, Agoda or Booking.com.
Inspired by the classic novel the Lost Horizon by James Hilton, Shangri-la was described as the nirvana tucked in the western part of the Himalayas. Perfection, grace, and elegance at its finest can substantially describe the experience we had during our stay in Shangri-la Bosphorus.
My fellow writer, JP Licudan and I had the privilege to stay in the luxurious Premier Bosphorus Room. The elegant and spacious room are truly up to the Shangri-la level of perfection up to the smallest details. This close attention to details made our stay pleasurable that we don’t want to leave the comfort of our room. The television inside the bathroom was one of the exquisite details for us. This was the first time that I’ve stayed in a super posh hotel that has a TV on the bathroom mirror.
From the little welcome treats up to the luxury Bulgari toiletries during our stay made us spoiled and pampered. Our room has a fantastic view of the Bosphorus Strait overlooking the Asian side of Istanbul.
The Shangri-la Bosphorus amenities are readily available to the guests with a refined taste. The hotel has 186 rooms with 17 room types that vary with the room size, views, and location of the room. There are luxury shops that are available on the ground floor. The lounge area offers tea and coffee for the guests in the afternoon, where you can just sit and relax in while enjoying the refreshing glass of Turkish tea. There are hundreds of teas to choose from so you can take your time and unwind.
The hotel also has an indoor swimming pool and fitness gym in the basement of the hotel. The Chi, the spa of the hotel offers varieties of relaxing massage services for men and women. Since it is a tradition in Turkey to separate the rooms for men and women, the spa also offers a private are for the couples who wishes to spend their time together in the Chi.
There are two food outlets in Shangri-La Bosphorus, the Shang Palace that can hold private functions and caters of fine dining type of service and the other one is the Ist Too, which is the more relaxed and casual one.
The Shang Palace Restaurant
The Ist Too Restaurant
Both restaurants offer an excellent and tasty traditional Chinese and international dishes. The breakfast selection also offers a wide range of variety from hot, traditional Turkish to continental breakfast.
The staff of the hotel welcomed us like a rock star. From the moment, we stepped onto their front door, the welcoming smiles and helpful hand you can honestly feel that they are sincere in welcoming you in their hotel. The staff showed an utmost hospitality during our stay. As we leave the hotel the following day, the staff gracefully helped us with our luggage, wave their goodbyes and well wishes on our journey. It was a wonderful feeling indeed! It feels like we’ve found a home in Istanbul.
Shangri-la is located at Besiktas, from the airport I took the public transportation to the hotel. You can also request an airport pick-up if you wish.
From Ataturk airport, I took the train to the Zeytinburnu and caught the tram to Kabatas. The journey took around 1 hour from the airport to Kabatas. The traffic jam in Istanbul is also notorious like in Manila. Due to the traffic jam, I opted to walk from Kabatas to the Shangri-la hotel, it took me about 15 – 25 minutes.
The hotel is right in front of the ferry stations, you can join and enjoy the Bosphorus cruise with no fuss. We just asked the concierge regarding the schedule of the ferry. To avoid the horrendous traffic jam in the city, most of the locals are using the ferry to go to the Asian side vice versa.
Taksim area is not far from the hotel; you can enjoy loads of different restaurants and shops.
The historical area of Sultan-Ahmet is not that far as well. You can reach it via tram or taxi.
Taxi tips: Always ask the driver to put the meter on during your trip or if you have UBER app, you can easily request for one.
Special thanks to the Shangri-la Bosphorus for the complimentary stay during our visit to Istanbul.
The opinions in this article are my own.
About the Writer
Ryazan Tristram is named after a Russian city near Moscow. The Miss Zan-shine of Everything Zany – A Photography, Lifestyle and Dual Citizen Travel Blog. She likes to travel, history, meet people & try exotic foods! Planning to explore more countries with her D.I.Y trips as a Dual Citizen (British – Filipina). Follow her travels on Facebook and Instagram.