Sumengen Hotel, Istanbul – REVIEW
The Sumengen Hotel in Istanbul
This small boutique hotel is in a fantastic location – the Sultanhamet area in the shadow of the Blue Mosque. In spite of the amazing location, so very near the sites of the Blue Mosque, Hippodrome, and Aya Sophia, it is quiet and peaceful. Restaurants and shopping are literally just steps away from the front door.
Though it is a GREAT spot in the historic part of Istanbul, location is not it’s best feature -that would have to be the wonderful staff! They are warm, welcoming and summarize Turkish hospitality. Every day you are met with smiles and questions about your day, offers to help with plans or taxis – whatever you need. Koyra at the front desk is willing and able to help with anything you could need.
Dilan and Erica work in the breakfast area and are all smiles and explanations about the food.
Poke your head in the kitchen to see what Erica is cooking. I got a lesson in how to make the yummy lentils! (The secret is the Pul Biber spice which you can get in the spice market!)
Rick Steve’s followers are frequent visitors which tells you a lot about the hotel. These travelers are savvy and independent and this hotel caters to them. It is near the sites and gives a nice flavor of the country you came so far to see! It even has a small elevator so if your feet are too pooped to climb anymore you can just ride up to the room! Be sure to have tea in the afternoon; it is always free in the sitting area.
Our room overlooked the Bosphorus Strait with a lovely view. We watched ships of all sizes from tiny tugs to enormous tankers and cruise ships glide by.
The room was a nice size with a large bed for two and a couch which folded out to a bed for two as well. I love beautiful details like the crown molding.
The bathroom was large, well lit (light switches are on the outside of the bathroom in Turkey) and had all the comforts of home like shampoo, conditioner, and a hairdryer. Look at this lovely tile decorating the bathroom wall – made in Turkey, of course!
What IS the very best thing about this hotel? It would be a toss up between the HUGE hot tub from which you could see the Bosphorus Strait and the AC. The AC only runs when you have the door key in a slot on the wall so you’ll have to start from scratch to cool it off each time you return. It only takes a few minutes to cool things down and it works perfectly. After a long, hot day of sight seeing the AC was really, really welcome.
The breakfast room has a small terrace. Eat inside in the large room or venture outside – either way you get a nice view of the water. The Turks are hospitable and the breakfast spread was so varied!
There were platters of hot food and a large selection of cheeses and spreads for bread. What would a meal be without Turkish delight? Try the brown Yas Helvasi Cevizli or the tan colored Tahini Helva.
This hotel is a little like visiting mom at your childhood home, perhaps not the fanciest place, but warm, comfortable, clean, and quiet with good food!
I highly recommend this wonderful, boutique hotel. Enjoy your visit and tell them The Educational Tourist sent you! We were given a discount on our room in exchange for an honest review. Honestly – the warmth here is something I’d like to find EVERYWHERE! Loved this hotel and the staff.
Natalie, The Educational Tourist