Best and worst accommodations:
Best: Hotel Sultan Hill
Why: We stayed for five nights. Walking distance to Blue Mosque, Hagia Sofia, Topkapi Palace, and even the Grand Bazaar. Very pleasant, clean, beautiful rooftop terrace overlooking Blue mosque. Great neighborhood with wonderful shops and restaurants. If stairs are an issue ask for a room on the lower floors as there is no elevator. Great prices,
Cris Anderson in Indianapolis, In USA 11/05/2013
Best: Zeugmahotel hotel
Why: The only place we stayed. The location was fabulous. We walked everywhere from there. We liked the breakfast area on the 3rd story and the breakfasts were delicious. We especially liked the carrot/yogurt dish. Staff were friendly and helpful.
Marilyn in Wilsonville, Or USA 10/01/2013
Best: We liked our Hotel Sultanhan.
Why: Excellent location, Turkish flavor, attentive staff, clean & comfortable.
Gordon in Oakland, CA USA 07/16/2013
Best: Hotel Sultan Hill
Why: What a spectacular view of the Blue Mosque and Sea of Marmara from the roof top terrace! Hotel staff was very pleasant and helpful. Warning - no elevator!
Dave Anderson in Indianola, IA USA 05/31/2013
Best: Hotel Lausos
Why: Very friendly staff. Marmara Suite was clean, comfortable, and spacious with a wall of windows. Lovely view from the top floor of the Marmara Sea. However, elevator stops at the floor below. Delicious breakfast spread. Only a few blocks from Old Town's main road, Hagia Sophia, and Blue Mosque.
Gloria Shelley in Houston, TX USA 05/21/2013
Best: Basileus Hotel
Why: Explained above. Consider including this hotel in your guidebook. Highly recommended.
Erika Malitzky in Spokane, Wa USA 05/06/2013
Best: Blue Hotel
Why: Great location, good rates, breakfast and service. Weirdest TV remote ever (needed professional help to figure it out) but otherwise excellent
Philip in Arlington, va USA 12/12/2012
Best: ZEUGMA HOTEL
Why: We just came back from Turkey. Our friends stayed at Zeugma for 7 nights and we stayed there for one night before we headed to Cappadocia. Melih and his staff were very friendly and welcoming. Melih was very flexible in providing transfer for us when we arrived Istanbul.
Melih was very helpful for our last minute hotel search when we returned to Istanbul even though Zeugma was not able to accomodate us due to availability. He was kind enough to offer us tea and coffee if we were able to drop by. I am very impressed by his promptness in returning all my email requests no matter what time of the day!
The hotel location is superb. It's just 5 minutes walk from the Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia and underground cistern. Needless to say, there are lots of restaurants and shops within walking distance.
Best Regards Vivian Lee Pasadena, USA
Vivian Lee in Pasadena, USA 10/20/2012
Worst: Sultan's Eye Comfort Hotel
Why: This hotel was just tolerable, and we have low requirements when it comes to hotels. However, the staff here was reluctant to give us the 10% off as the guidebook suggested they would and at first tried to convince us that the discount had already been applied. They ended up taking off about 8%. The room was teeny, although that was less upsetting than the peeling wallpaper, the smell of mold, and the leaking toilet. Also, the breakfast is no longer on a terrace. It's now in the basement...which has sparkly silver walls. On the plus side, the sheets and towels were clean. If that had not been the case, we would not have tolerated the rest. Lastly, the wi-fi is very spotty to the extent that I don't think guests should expect it even though the hotel claims to have it.
Sheean in Piermont, NY USA 10/18/2012
Best: Adamar Hotel
Why: Great hotel with service you would expect from a world class hotel, but provided with genuine courtesy and friendliness rather than feigned obsequiousness
Mark Vinkenes in Arlington, VA USA 10/05/2012
Best: Hotel Ottoman Imperial
Why: So Turkish, so luxurious and so conveniently located. The service was excellent and friendly. We loved the ornate container with Turkish delight-their version of mint on pillow! We also enjoyed their restaurant, which was serving authentic Ottoman dishes while we were there.
Lynda Lamb in Birmingham, AL USA 07/11/2012
Best: ZEUGMA HOTEL
Why: The Zeugma Hotel was the first stop we made on our nearly four week vacation in Turkey. It was a wonderful welcome to a beautiful country. We were greeted with drinks and questions about our flight. After we were a bit rested after our long flight, we were shown our room which was beautiful. The room was immaculate and the bed was comfortable. The bathroom was roomy and had plenty of hot water and good water pressure. Our room was in the back so I can't speak to the rooms in the front, but we heard no outside noise, in fact due to jet lag we didn't go out the first night and were surprised to see how lively the street was the next night. Lots of fun and we didn't hear a thing when we got to our room. The staff was very helpful at directing us to various places and booked activities for us. We stayed at another similarly reviewed hotel on the way back, and while very nice, it didn't compare to the Zeugma Hotel. Thanks to everyone at the Zeugma Hotel and Rick Steves for a memorable stay and perfect introduction to Turkey!
Jessica Walsh Australia 06/06/2012
Best: Zeugma Hotel in old city
Why: I've been at this hotel for 5 days in April. I discovered the book by Rick Steves. Firstly, their free pick-up transfer service was very good for us.(valid 3 nights) When we arrived the hotel, welcomed with smiling faces. They offered us free coffee with turkish delight. They did immediately check-in process. The room was in great shape and seemed to have been renovated in the past couple months. Bathroom was in complete working order and quite clean. The terrace was wonderful and the breakfast in the mornings was really good and fresh. We would thoroughly recommend the hotel.
Irina Torsi in Lake Forest, ABD 04/17/2012
Best: Zeugma Hotel in istanbul
Why: The manager and his front office members of staff were very, very obliging and helpful. They did everything they could to make our stay enjoyable. They managed all our airport transfers and the half day tour we went on with great efficiency. The hotel is in a very central position and is in a very quiet location. The terrace was wonderful and the breakfast in the mornings was really good and fresh. We would thoroughly recommend this hotel.
Judit in Philadelphia, PA USA 03/29/2012
Best: Romantic Hotel
Why: The price was awesome! I paid the equivalent of ~$46 a night (March) for a single room. The location couldn't be better, a 5 min walk from Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia. The breakfast on the upper desk was awesome: the view of the Sea of Marmara on one side and the Blue Mosque on the other side. The staff were so friendly and helpful. They really were the BEST!
Joan Carroll in Fort Worth, TX USA 03/15/2012
Best: Niles Hotel
Why: Not listed in your book, but a great little place with nice rooms and great Turkish buffet breakfast. If you want to experience Turkey, and not just another westernized hotel, stay here!.
George Braun in Manassas, VA USA 11/29/2011
Why: We stayed here at the end of our trip around Turkey. This hotel is not listed in your book, but we found it on TripAdvisor and are very glad we did. It's located near Istiklal Caddesi, and is a renovated 5-story house with 9 rooms and an elevator. Each room is more like a loft apartment, decorated in contemporary style. There is much attention to "green" matters (for example, they use a grey water system). We especially appreciated the tea making facilities in the room, and when we needed black tea instead of herbal tea, it was provided immediately at no charge. This is just one example of the gracious hospitality and personalized service extended to guests; the staff was also very eager to review sightseeing plans and make sure we made the most of our time in Istanbul. www.peradays.com
Worst: Sarnic Hotel
Why: We stayed here at the beginning of our travels around Turkey. We had booked a 2 bed room, two months in advance (we were mother and son, and did not want to share a bed). Upon arrival, we were told that the only available room had one bed (full, not queen or king); however, they did plan to move us the next day. Furthermore, the room was quite small (even for 2 people who did wish to share a bed) and had no ventilation (the small single window opened to an airshaft). The bed itself was against a wall leaving only one open side, so one of us had to crawl in from the foot of the bed. We were moved the next day to a triple room (3 single beds), which had almost no floor space, and was next to the garden and air conditioning unit for the building (meaning noise of one sort or another much of the time). Despite the claims that all rooms were recently renovated, our carpet in both rooms had not been changed in years, and the decor was overwhelmingly brown and dingy. There is an elevator in the new section of the hotel, but both of our rooms (303 and 103) were in the old section with only stairs. Finally, the shower in 103 had black mold in the grout. On the plus side, the location was great and the breakfasts were excellent (the best of the many good ones we've had in Turkey). The staff was pleasant and helpful and the airport pickup worked very well.
Harold Chasen in Philadelphia, PA USA 10/11/2011
Best: Hotel Sultan Hill Istanbul
Why: Friendly, clean, home-away-from-home feel. We met our son, who had been working in Africa for the past 2 years, in Istanbul. He was staying at a Hostel a few blocks from this (our) hotel, and the Hotel Sultan Hill welcomed him and invited him to partake in our breakfast buffet in the mornings. We had a slight change in plans at the end of our 3 weeks in Turkey and needed an extra night in Istanbul and the Hotel Sultan Hill made changes for us and we again felt that we had been welcomed home. Highly recommended!
Nancy and Rob Cawsey in Saanichton, BC Canada 09/22/2011
Best: In 5 weeks of travel through Turkey ... 1. Istanbul-Hotel Sari Konak-(CAD $140) beside the Hippodrome Hotel 2. Selcuk-Hotel Bella (CAD $75) (free rides to/from Ephesus and other sites, great rooftop terrace) 3. Pamukkule-Melrose Hotel (CAD $42)-a gem 4. Cirali (CAD $140)(beside Olympus ruins)-Arcadia 1/2 6. Antalya-Otantik Butik Hotel (CAD $95) 7. Urgup, Cappadocia-Yunak Hotel - this was a splurge at CAD $170 per night but the cave hotel/surroundings was just like the website.
Why: All these hotels had great location, fantastic service & food, immaculately clean with free parking and delicious breakfast
J. Grunau in Abbotsford, BC Canada 06/18/2011
Best: Ottoman Hotel Imperial
Why: Location, location, luxurious, friendly, and location.
Joe Costantino in Sofia, bulgaria 04/10/2011