Every year for our World’s Best Awards survey, T+L asks readers to weigh in on travel experiences around the globe — to share their opinions on the top hotels, resorts, cities, islands, cruise ships, spas, airlines, and more. Hotels (including safari lodges) were rated on their facilities, location, service, food, and overall value. Properties were classified as city hotel, resort, or safari lodge based on their locations and amenities.
Istanbul is a city of dizzying contrasts, where ancient tradition meets modern-day culture. It sits quite literally on the crossroads of two civilizations, spread across Asia and Europe. Sleek, glassy skyscrapers tower over centuries-old mosques, and neighborhoods give visitors a peek into Old World Constantinople while trendy, newer districts offer a glimpse into the city’s future.
1. Raffles Istanbul
This contemporary hotel perfectly exemplifies the modern spirit of a historic city. Located in the upscale Zorlu Center, Raffles Istanbul has 136 rooms and 49 suites, with private balconies and floor-to-ceiling windows that provide views of the Bosphorus, the Princes’ Islands, and Istanbul’s Old Town. The property blends high-end furnishings and amenities, such as walk-in closets and its renowned butler service, with traditional Turkish motifs. The public areas showcase an impressive art collection. Perfectly reflecting Istanbul’s place as a melting pot of east and west, the dining options at Raffles, which include multiple restaurants, bars, and lounges, blend pan-Asian, Turkish, and Mediterranean flavors.
2. Shangri-La Bosphorus, Istanbul
3. Çırağan Palace Kempinski Istanbul
4. Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosphorus