Arrival Experience: This unique bed and breakfast-style boutique property is designed to meet the expectations of the most high-end traveler. Backed by the Turkish-American founders of Armaggan (Turkey’s most famous producer of exclusive heritage jewelry, homeware, and naturally dyed products) and strong supporters of Turkish culture, this boutique living space aspires to compete with the finest of Istanbul’s hotels. It will always come out on top in terms of customer service-focused living thanks to a small room count and attentive staff roster designed to cater to private groups rather than individuals. In fact, only high-end travel agents and groups seeking a supreme experience can book this elegant Bosphorus-fronting property. Its traditional exterior has been remade to showcase a local home, but one with an interior meant for royalty. Reception staff changes based on who is arriving. If it is a large group, the welcoming mansion staff can greet guests as they wish, but if it is an elite individual traveler, arrivals can be met in the foyer with a big smile before being shown the rounds of the mansion.
Dining: As a non-traditional hotel catering to the most experienced and high-end travelers, the chefs aim to please here. They are ready to serve what guests want and when they want it often taking menu suggestions in advance of one’s arrival. If it is a lavish breakfast in the palatial living room with Bosphorus views or a cozy candlelit dinner in the private confines of a guest suite, options are endless here. With the Armaggan background, chefs are trained to please any whim within seconds. Ingredients and menus are based upon a natural philosophy of organic farming and local cuisine that permeates the menu and lifestyle here. This ethos stems from the Nar Gourmet brand, Armaggan’s exclusive and all-natural Anatolian-sourced line of herbs and ingredients.
Accommodations: Guest rooms vary in the mansion based upon their location and size, but all are dressed in the finest of Armaggan décor. The soft king beds are topped by designer spreads with thick pillows and the highest quality linens. Almost all guest slumbers here are met by early morning glimpses of the active Bosphorus if window drapery is swept open. TVs are not standard, but flat-screen models can be installed upon request. Complimentary wireless Internet is, of course, available since the experienced traveler who bunks here often incorporates it into their daily life. Bathrooms are beautifully lit highlighting the continuation of design. Handcrafted soaps are in all, and towels are gracefully wrapped in sheer linen covers to keep them soft and clean. Many bathrooms boast exterior windows with glimpses of the water or natural sunlight.
Conclusion: Guests who stay here are typically looking for a unique and private environment meaning no formal concierge although someone is always on hand with recommendations on where to go and what to do. The entire mansion can be rented out by corporate or family groups, but individuals are always welcome (celebrities will find this truly ideal). The exclusivity of the Armaggan brand translates to the guest list here, which is geared towards diplomats and high-profile clientele looking for a Bosphorus address. The basement spa and hammam appeals to those looking for a traditional Turkish bathing experience in privacy. This is, perhaps, Istanbul’s best-kept secret for the high-end traveler with a contemporary focus on design, security, and experience.