Four days and three nights were not nearly enough to experience all Swissôtel The Bosphorus, Istanbul, and the city had to offer.

Spending four days and three nights in the magical city of Istanbul sounds like something out of a dream. This month, FACT magazine got the opportunity to turn this fantasy into a reality, after being invited to stay at the renowned Swissôtel The Bosphorus. This five-star luxury venue, located in the centre of Istanbul on the banks of the Bosphorus River, proved to be an unforgettable experience, one we could not wait to share with you, our readers.

After a comfortable flight lasting just over four hours, we touched down in Turkey at Istanbul Airport. Our exceptional Swissôtel experience began immediately, as we were gifted a special ‘Meet and Greet’ service offered by the hotel. This meant a golf cart was waiting for us the moment we disembarked from the aeroplane. From there we were whisked through the airport, through passport control and on to collect our luggage. By the time we found ourselves sitting cosily in the Mercedes-Benz provided by the hotel, only eight minutes had passed since exiting the plane. A truly novel airport experience.

The drive to the Swissôtel The Bosphorus gave us a sneak peek of the splendour awaiting us in Istanbul, the only city in the world to sit in two continents, both Europe and Asia. This breath-taking metropolis with its grand architecture, large assortment of mosques, vibrant colours, and rich history, all located on route, were enough to keep our eyes wide open in sheer wonder at all the adventure and splendour awaiting us in this great capital, once named Constantinople.

Swissôtel The Bosphorus Istanbul

Arriving at Swissôtel The Bosphorus, friendly and professional staff members were on hand to receive us and to take care of every aspect of our booking and settling in. All the 566 guest rooms available at this hotel were of an exceptional standard as we had the pleasure of inspecting various types, including guest rooms and suites, as well as two-story lofts, and one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments. All these options feature state-of-the-art technology and premium quality amenities, including highspeed internet and marble enriched bathrooms.

“The hotel is not only within walking distance of the affluent shopping district in Nisantasi but is a great starting point to explore the vibrant city of Istanbul and all the wonders it holds.”

I was booked into the beautiful Swiss Advantage Bosphorus View Room. This 38sq/m, deluxe space, with large floorto-ceiling windows, boasts unbelievable views of the Bosphorus River, as well as the Golden Horn, an Asian landmass located across the water. The interior decor showcased a mix of uncluttered Swiss design and Turkish warmth, a balance that seemed to work in every way. I found the walk-in shower, complete with rainfall showerhead, to be a great feature, along with the attentive housekeeping service, offered twice daily, that ensured the room was always clean, tidy and fully stocked. A large work desk, complimentary Nespresso coffee and tea service, a 46-inch digital HD LED TV, premium internet and multiregional power sockets, all added to the comfort, convenience, and generous feel of this Swissôtel.

The building itself offers various meeting spaces with capacities anywhere from five to 1,200 people. A ballroom, a luxurious holistic spa, a rooftop pool and no less than 65 acres of historical gardens. All this and so much more is available to guests of this beautiful hotel.

Spending time at the luxurious Pürovel Spa & Sport facilities, offered us a chance to work up a sweat, as well as to relax and unwind. Boasting a full range of luxurious, holistic treatments, this venue houses 15 treatment rooms, including 12 massage rooms and three hammam areas, a steam bath, sauna, Jacuzzi, Pilates’ studios, group fitness classes, indoor and outdoor pools, and ultramodern sports training facilities. We took full advantage of as many options as we could over our stay and left feeling calm and revitalised.

Swissôtel The Bosphorus is also regarded as a cuisine hotspot and it’s easy to understand why. With several highend restaurants located under its roof, we were spoiled for choice as we were served healthy Peruvian, Turkish and Nikkei cuisines. Buffet breakfasts, lunches and dinners, along with al fresco dining complete with scenic views, were all on offer and never disappointed. Both the food and the service were of an excellent standard and we must have gained a couple of kilos over our short stay.

Yet another fantastic feature of Swissôtel The Bosphorus is its location in the heart of the city. The property is not only within walking distance of the affluent shopping district in Nisantasi, home to brands such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Kenzo, Prada and more, as well as several high-end malls, but it is also a great starting point to explore the vibrant city of Istanbul and all the wonders it holds. Over our four-day stay we managed to take in Hagia Sophia, the Grand Bazaar, the Blue Mosque, The Basilica Cistern, Topkapi Palace, Eminonu Square, The Galata Tower and many others. Any one of these magnificent landmarks would have made the journey to Istanbul worthwhile.

It was not easy saying goodbye to the amazing space we had experienced over our four extraordinary days in Istanbul. With VIP treatment to the airport and the same golf cart experience back to the plane, we spent our four-hour flight reminiscing on all we had experienced. We made a promise to return both to Istanbul as well as to Swissôtel The Bosphorus. Truly, an awe-inspiring experience. ✤