I returned last night from a whirl-wind trip of one of my favorite cities – a place that still evokes a sense of romance, mystery and mysticism. My trip was centered around a visit to the newly-opened Raffles Istanbul – the hotel is absolutely stunning with its intricate Ottoman styling and hallways full of commissioned artwork.
The hotel is situated within the ultra-luxury Zorlu Center; home to high-end international and local designers – and surprisingly, an Eataly. Located in Beşiktaş district on the European side of the city, I was blown away by the juxtaposition of the ancient and modern – one my first day, the hotel arranged for me to meet with master ring maker and jeweler Sevan Bicakci, who while using classic Turkish architectural design and technique in his jewelry, also makes use of Instagram to showcase his masterpieces.
Naturally I luxuriated in one of the hotel’s traditional Turkish Hammam rooms – a little bit of detox after a night spent with friends over champagne at Raffles Istanbul’s glamorous Long Bar. The spa is absolutely fabulous – one of the most serene yet opulent experiences I have had in a long while.
And so, after conversations over cups of strong Turkish coffee, powdery fingers from decadent Turkish delights, and a photo gallery full of future Instagram posts from my room’s floor-to-ceiling balconies, I don’t expect the allure of Turkey to fade anytime soon.
For more of my travel finds, check out Travel Curator. Happy Journeys!