Four Seasons Istanbul: an escape to luxury

Just a few steps from the Blue Mosque, Santa Sophia museum and Topkapi Palace, a former prison has been transformed into one of the most prestigious and charming hotels in Istanbul.

Incredible though it sounds, this erstwhile prison, built in 1917, is a place you'd really want to escape to, not from. When you look a little closer, it makes more sense, as nothing has been left to chance when it comes to the delights in store behind the neoclassical façade. The building exterior preserves the original colour and the large, arched windows but the interior has been completely renovated with some of the most interesting architectural details being retained, including the guard towers, the prison governor's office and the marble staircase leading to the courtyard. Ottoman style, complemented with modern touches, predominates in the 54 double rooms and 11 suites, as well as elsewhere in the public areas, which are tastefully decorated with carefully selected artwork.

The service, restaurant and other facilities are all in keeping with the high standard that the refined appearance suggests. Fitness facilities and a range of spa services are available at the Health Club, and there is a choice of dining experiences, including in-room dining or the Seasons restaurant, where you can enjoy a delicious Sunday brunch or fine Turkish specialities in the glass-enclosed courtyard or on the outdoor terrace. Set in the heart of the Sultanahmet district of the city, surrounded by exotic buildings and mosques and just steps from major historical sites, you won't find yourself planning a quick getaway.

Further information:
Four Seasons Istanbul