What's the Draw?
Having launched in February 2023 in the hip neighbourhood of Karaköy in Istanbul, the Peninsula boasts 177 rooms ranging from cosy boltholes to substantial suites, all spread among its four waterfront buildings. The airy lobby greets you on entry, also operating as a restaurant, with 260 seats, extending into an outside terrace by the Bosphorus, where you can enjoy a Turkish breakfast or afternoon tea, The Peninsula’s signature offering, while admiring the beautiful native flora of the outdoor spaces and gardens designed by award-winning international landscape architect Enzo Enea.
The interior design, including the elegant rooms, were designed by architectural and interior designer Zeynep Fadıllıoğlu. Room amenities include a bathroom clad with Marmara marble, a supremely comfortable bed, and automatic curtains. The relaxation centre defines the word serenity, with a magnificently designed swimming pool, hammams and steam rooms.
What to Eat?
The Turkish Breakfast is a feast for the eyes and should be ordered in The Lobby restaurant, ideally on a seat by the Bosphorus. Amongst the generous spread of savoury and sweet delights, highlights include a delicately layered spinach and cheese borek; tahini molasses, kaymak, and fresh honeycomb to spread on simit; and cilbir, poached eggs swimming in a yogurt sauce with luminous chill butter and sprigs of aromatic dill.
The hotel’s rooftop restaurant Gallada is thoughtfully designed with Turkish textiles and mosaic tiles, and features an alfresco terrace with sensational views over the Bosphorus and Old City. The menu has been developed by the esteemed chef Fatih Tutak – who gained two coveted Michelin stars at Turk Fatih Tutak after a two-decade career in Asia – features a ‘Turk-Asian’ hybrid cuisine with dishes like blue crab menemen. Nearby, the delightful and recently Bib Gourmand-awarded Karaköy Lokantasi offers traditional Turkish cuisine using ingredients of the highest quality, with Karaköy Gulluoglu offering the best baklava in the city.
What to Do
Kılıç Ali Paşa Hamamı
Feel complete rejuvenation and the history of the city with a traditional hamam ritual in a magnificent 16th century building.
As part of the regeneration of the Galata Port area in the Karakoy neighbourhood, Istanbul’s premier modern art museum has reopened after a five-year rebuild, following a sleek, contemporary design by Italian architect Renzo Piano.
The Museum of Innocence
A meticulously detailed, soulful delight created by Orhan Pamuk, Turkey’s most authoritative literary figure, and as a museum in a city based on a novel set in that city – it is one of the world's most original museums.
Of all the breathtaking historic buildings in the city, Hagia Sofia – famous for its transformation from the central church of Constantinople to a syncretised mosque – is supreme, with unprecedented aesthetic wonder to be found in Byzantine-Christian and Ottoman-Muslim features alike.
Double Rooms from £900, peninsula.com