Pera Palace Hotel
Mesrutiyet Caddesi No:52 Tepebasi, Beyoglu 34430 Istanbul, Turkey
Read the tip as a "Thing to do":
Pera Palace is located in European part of old Istanbul, and Pera is the name of this part. Its architect was Alexandre Vallaury who also designed Archeological Museum and Istanbul Erkek Lisesi. The design of the building is charming with oriental touch and eclectic style. The hotel was built for the passengers of Orient Express, so it has a colorful history. Imagining this era makes me nostalgic. I remember the crime and mystery movies like “Murder on the Orient Express”. I think it was a dreamy time with elegant women, gentile men, delicate gusto…
Many public figures preferred it for their accommodation in Istanbul. Some of them are Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, Ismet Inonu, Alfred Hitchcock, Greta Garbo, Mata Hari, Sarah Bernhardt…
Agatha Christie, great writer of the popular genre, had a mysterious period in her life. No one knows where she was for 11 days. Her car found deserted near a lake in London. It is said that she was in Istanbul and staying in this hotel, number 411. She was a regular customer of Pera Palace. I think Istanbul was a source for her writings. Years after, Warner Bros wanted to produce a movie about famous writer and they wanted to learn what happened in these 11 days. They hired a psychic, Tamara Rand. She said that the mystery was hidden in that room. In 1979, during a renovation, a worker found a key hid under the doorstep. Warner Bros offered a huge amount of money for the key but the owner of the hotel kept it for himself. So, the mystery is still unsolved. It is believed that it is all written in Christie’s hidden diaries. They are still lost.
The hotel is under a big reconstruction and opening of Pera Palace as a museum-hotel will be in the last quarter of 2009. If I have an opportunity, I’d love to stay here.
Unique Quality: Architecture, history and mystery
Agatha Christie's favourite
Orient Express, the historic Pera Palas Oteli holds a unique place in the annals of Istanbul lodging-places.
The management knows it, and will coax every dollar possible from the nostalgia factor.
The hotel's once-rich but now somewhat dowdy orientalist décor is strongly evocative of fin-de-siècle Constantinople, and many of its rooms have updated comforts, though they're not equal to modern luxury hotels at this price (US$250 double).
The location is not bad, a mile away from Taksim Square in the heart of Beyoglu's historic Tepebasi district right next to the US Consulate-General.
The Pera Palas's grand salons are often rented out for social events, which can make for noisy evenings. Refik Saydam Caddesi, a major traffic artery, streams right by the hotel's west side, adding to the noise.
Whether you stay here or just stroll in for a look, ask to see Atatürk's suite, kept as a museum. Dont foget to tip the bellman who shows you the suite...and feel the history
Unique Quality: The Pera Palas, designed by the French architect Alexander Vallaury, opened October 1891. Among the visitors of Pera Palas are: Ismet Inönü, Celal Bayar, Adnan Menderes, Fahri Korutürk, Refik Koraltan, King Zogo of Albania, Shah Riza Pehlevi of Iran, King Edward VIII of England , King Ferdinand of Bulgaria, King Carol of Romania, president Tito of Yugoslavia and Jacqueline Kennedy, Giscard d’Estaing, Von Papen, Mata Hari Cicero, Agatha Christie, Yehudi Menuhin, Marie Bell. Pera Palas, which lived through the Ottoman decline, the founding of the Republic, two world wars and not to mention changing political, social and economic conditions has become a token of history.Taksim Istanbul
Agatha Christie's favourite!
I remember we chose this hotel as it is the most known in Istanbul and very famous because Agatha Christie used to stay there when in Turkey, and she used to write while there her novels, such as "Murder on the Orient Express".
The hotel though it is not "a big deal" , in the sense that it is expensive but the rooms are not that big. Also, it is very old and therefore does not have all the modern comforts.
Unique Quality: A charachteristic of this hotel is the elevator: it is in a very "old and pitoresque style" and there is still nowadays a guy from the hotel in uniform who helps the clients in reaching their floor, up and down the lift!
Steeped in History, a famous hotel
This wonderful hotel is still in the style of the 1930's. It was the destination for the passengers arriving on the Orient Express. It was also the hotel where Agatha Christie stayed when she went missing for a period of time. She stayed here several times and it was here that she wrote her famous novel "Murder on the Orient Express". She hid a key in her room which was the key to her missing diary . The key was found but the diary never was. Her room (411) is now a museum room dedicated in her memory.
Many other famous figures from the past have stayed here over the years, including Ataturk.
The staff at the hotel could not have been nicer. They really cared for their guests. The concierge, realising that my friend & I were 2 women travelling alone, took the trouble to arrange all her taxis for us, and noted down the taxi numbers. We felt very safe knowing that the hotel staff were concerned for our safety.
Unique Quality: The bar in the hotel is really lovely, as are the restaurants and patisserie coffee shop. Excellant service, I can't recommend this hotel highly enough.
The lift in the hotel has one of those really old fashioned metal grid doors, so everyone can see you going up & down from the lobby, so quaint.
Shop around for deals to this hotel, as different web sites quote different prices.
Directions: Easy enough to get to from the airport by taxi.
A nice splurge
If you go for the grand hotel thing, then this is your ticket in Istanbul. The hotel really caters to the old Orient Express mystique. And I must say, they do it very, very well. All the rooms have nameplates designating dignitaries who have stayed in that particular room. We stayed in the Tsar Ferdinand I (of Bulgaria) room. It was a huge corner room with 14 ft. ceilings and a balcony. The public areas of the hotel are impressive, in a grand style. The hotel is famous for its birdcage elevator, which is still the only one used. The most incredible breakfast I have ever had is served in one of the ballrooms. The bar is atmospheric and classy. A hotel employee will offer to show you the Agatha Christie room. The room rates may discourage some independent travelers; but just show up, check availibility and see what is the best rate they will make for you. Who knows, you may get a great deal. We did.
Pera Palas Hotel is a rokoko style building of 1892, built in order to host the passengers of the Orient Express, designed by the French architect Valoury, which was renovated keeping all the valuable and unique furniture in the original form.
A great history, but overpriced.
When I decided to visit Istanbul, there was only one hotel that I wanted to stay in, the famous Pera Palas. It is an institution: Istanbul's eqivalent of Raffles, and I love staying at Raffles.
But, when I arrived at the Pera Palas, felt the cloying atmosphere and saw the small, rather dingy room, I thought what the hell am I paying this much money for? I like visiting museums, but I'm not going to spend my entire holiday budget just in order to sleep in one.
I moved to a modern hotel across the road, where I paid considerably less and had a much nicer room.
Unique Quality: The Pera Palas has a great history and it is a tourist attraction in its own right.
It was opened in 1891, specifically to accomodate the passengers from the Orient Express.
Famous guests have included Mata Hari, Agatha Christie, King Edward VIII, King Zog of Albania, the Shah of Iran, President Tito and Jacqueline Kennedy.
This place has seen better days.
More about Pera Palace Hotel
London in istanbul
The Grand Hotel de Londres (Grand London Hotel, Büyük Londra Oteli), is one of Istanbul's two remaining late 19th-century European-style hotels in the Tepebasi district.
Built by the Glavani family in 1892, it was designed, like its more famous neighbor the Pera Palace Hotel (Pera Palas Oteli), to host Europeans arriving in Ottoman Constantinople by ship and Orient Express train.
The 54-room Grand London is an authentic period piece, having undergone much less restoration than the Pera Palas. It is a bit the worse for wear, with knocked-up woodwork, frayed furniture and creaky floors, but friendly, still serviceable and quite cheap for this area. If you're looking for unchanged Victorian Ottomania at a bargain price, this is it.
The location is not bad: a few minutes' stroll from Istiklal Caddesi, the British Consulate-General and Galatasaray and Tünel squares. Taxis along the broad avenue called Tarlabasi Bulvari provide fairly fast transport to Sultanahmet and Taksim Square; or walk to Taksim in about 15 minutes.
Büyük Londra Oteli (Grand Hotel de Londres)
Mesrutiyet Caddesi No. 117
Tepebasi, Beyoglu, Istanbul
Tel +90 212 245 0670, fax 245 0671
This wonderful Art Deco Hotel is a real masterpiece and deserves a visit, as if you were going to a Museum or so. Really famous and “Top of the Tops” in the 1930s, this hotel was famous amongst the “Orient Express” travelers and was the favourite of english mystery tales writer Agatha Christie.
Though a bit decadent now, it keeps the charm and glamour of the old days. Even if you are not gonna stay in, come to have a tea at one of the halls, bar or cafeteria. Don’t be shy, go inside and have a good look around, is wonderful! They even have a souvenir shop (memorabilia from the hotel) inside!!
Look at my travelogue for more pics...
Pera Palas Hotel
Chandeliers and roof of one of the Pera Palas room
pera palace hotel
Hotel Pera Palas
I have booked a group booking of customers into the Pera Palas hotel but keep hearing different reviews about the hotel being run down. Could anyone tell me if this hotel is suitable for a 4 night stay????
RE: Hotel Pera Palas
Pera Palace is the first luxury hotel in this country, built during Ottoman time to welcome passengers of the famous Orient Express. Its location and service is good. But do not expect the modernism and comfort of the top-level hotels (like Çiragan, Swissotel, Ceylan Intercontinental, etc) in which you can stay with a similar price with more comfort but nothing historical.
Pera Palace is the most special hotel in this country for me and all who cares at least a little bit about history. The point people might complain is that thay want to keep it as original as possible and therefore don't replace the old furnitures, windows, etc.
If I won a lottary offering me a free stay in Istanbul whereever I wish, I would pick Pera Palaca for sure. Plese feel ok and enjoy your special hotel.
RE: Hotel Pera Palas
Well, Pera Palas is not just an hotel but it is a part of the culture and history of Istanbul. I am sure you will enjoy your stay there.
RE: RE: Hotel Pera Palas
As stated twice before myself, have no hesitations. They should enjoy their stay there.
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Pera Palace Hotel
We've found that other people looking for this hotel also know it by these names:
- Pera Palas Hotel
Address: Mesrutiyet Caddesi No:52 Tepebasi, Beyoglu 34430 Istanbul, Turkey