The Yigitalp Hotel is in Laleli, just to the west of Beyazit and the Bazaar District. While it is not centrally located to the major attractions in Sultanahmet, it is an easy 2 km walk down Ordu Caddesi which turns into Divan Yolu Caddesi and takes you right to the Aya Sofya. There is also a tram line that runs down Ordu/Divan Yolu that ends up at Eminonu and the Spice Market and Galata Bridge. The closest tram stop, Laleli, is a short 5-minute walk from the hotel.
That said, it was nice to stay in an area that wasn't dominated by tourists. The area is a major commericial district with many shops selling men's and women's fashions. There are also a few hotels that cater to tourists and business travelers. Service at the hotel is spot on with friendly staff who are willing to help in any way. We had trouble with our toilet tank not filling and let them know when we left in the morning. When we returned after dinner the problem had been fixed. They are also great about answering questions about tourist tours and attractions and giving directions.
Our room was on the 3rd floor with a view of an alleyway in the back of the hotel but that meant there was not street noise. I doubt that there would be a lot of that even in the rooms on the front of the hotel as Cekur Cesme Sokak is not a major thoroughfare. We had two twin beds which we pushed together. My only complaint would be that my bed was almost rock hard which made for some restless nights. Rita's bed was fine apparently. TV, hair dryer, and a clean bathroom with adequate water pressure and hot water supply. All the conveniences of a modern hotel.
And the breakfast buffet (included in the room rate) was wonderful. Fresh fruit, juices, local cheeses, cold cuts, fresh yogurt, baked goods (we loved the cut up pieces of simit, the Turkish bread ring), sausages, etc. A great way to fuel up for a day of sightseeting.
Unique Quality: Great breakfast buffet included in room rate, near tram, more of a local flavor in the neighborhood, free use of in-room safe
Directions: In Laleli, two blocks north of Ordu Caddesi on Gencturk Caddesi at the corner of Cukur Cesme Sokak
There are definitely hotel rooms in Istanbul with a better view than this. I’ll bet it’s nice to open the curtain and see the Blue Mosque with its 6 minarets right outside your window. Yigitalp Hotel has no view to speak of, even though “yigitalp” (pronounced “YEEtalp”) is Turkish for “big mountain.”
Yigitalp Hotel is situated on a street in the heart of Istanbul’s textile district and the view from my room, at least, was an alley strewn with cardboard boxes and broken mannequins. Not that we were in the room much. And it was even kind of interesting to see what the city looks like from “behind.” The hotel is surrounded by wholesale shops for bathrobes, bedding and men’s clothing. Taxi drivers may have a hard time finding it if you just say “Gencturk” (pronounced “GENJturk”), so it’s good to have the whole address printed on a piece of paper. The neighborhood is Sehzadebasi (pronounced SHEH zadehbasheh), named for a nearby mosque.
All in all, it was not a bad place to stay in Istanbul. Provided you have a good pair of legs, you can walk to Sultanahmet (pronounced Sultan AHMET), where the attractions are. To save some steps, you can buy a “jeton” and hop on the tram. The closest stop is “University” (the campus of Istanbul University).
The hotel itself is decorated in typical Turkish style, with lots of ornate, dark furniture, patterned carpets, upholstered sofas and chandeliers. We stayed for 3 nights, paying about $50 per person a night. That included a buffet breakfast with a passable, if unremarkable, selection of rolls, cheeses, eggs, vegetables and fruit. The room was clean, again a bit heavy on the patterning, but adequate. A bathroom feature that should be copied by ALL hotels was a shower curtain that slides on a track. No puddles on the floor to mop up with your precious supply of towels.
And yes, you will hear the muezzin calling people to prayer at an ungodly hour of the morning. In Istanbul, there is no escaping it.
It's a four star hotel, but probably in other countries it will be rated only 3 star. The rooms are quiet but a bit litle. The lobby and the restaurant are right. The hotel staff is very good. I recommend this hotel if you want to be near the Sultanamet area.
Unique Quality: Very near the ancient area, you can go to the grand bazaar by foot or take the tram, that is just in the corner.
No views and the street is very narrow and dark.
Directions: Near the Laleli Mosque (very nice mosque)
The rooms were small and the bed was hard. But the staff was friendly, spoke English and they didn't try to gouge on money exchange, day trips or postage. Overall I would recommend this Hotel
Directions: Close to Sehzade Camii
Has anyone stayed at the Yigitalp Hotel in Istanbul? Is this a decent place to stay for 3 nights? They seem to be offering all sorts of extras - free tours, fruit, wine, airport transfers - that sound attractive. There are just so many hotels to choose from, and the reviews go from fabulous to horrible for the same hotel. The mind boggles...
I'm back from my trip - I was only there for 3 days, but we had a blast. The Yigitalp was pretty good - maybe not as close to the center as promised, but the price was right - $50 a night for a double room plus a nice buffet breakfast!
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