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Last updated: 27 October, 2022
Expert travel writer: Dana Facaros

Right on the water’s edge, in the up-and-coming Besiktas district, the luxurious Shangri-La is a destination in its own right. The building was first constructed in the 1930s – then relaunched in 2013 under the swanky Shangri-La brand.

The glittering interiors, extraordinary service, elegant bars and restaurants and hedonistic spa (with a hamam and beautiful underground pool) cater to a crowd that wants all the creature comforts of a 5 star when not exploring this lively, down-to-earth city.

Many of its silvery-white suites are blessed with mesmerising views of the Bosphorus.

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Key facilities

Airport transfers*
Beach: None
Fitness centre
Fitness classes
Golf course
Hot tub
Kids club
Parking: On-site (free)
Pool (adults only)
Pool (indoor)
Pool (outdoor)
Pool (kids)
Tennis courts
WiFi: Free

Food & drink

All inclusive
Kids menu
Restaurant on-site
Self catering
Additional charge

Room types


Room facilities

Air conditioning
Flat screen TV
Jacuzzi (private)
Pool (private)
Tea & coffee making facilities

Bedding options

2+ bedrooms
3+ beds
Connecting rooms
Rollaway/sofa bed

Bucket list experiences our writer says you must do in this destination, closest first

Dolmabahce Palace

Istanbul, Marmara Region, Turkey[0.4 miles]

An extraordinarily opulent 19th-century palace that blends Ottoman architecture with Baroque, Rococo and Neoclassical styles.

Best for ages: Any | £9

Topkapi Palace

Istanbul, Marmara Region, Turkey[3.7 miles]

Built in 1459 to become the 15th and-16th century home of the Ottoman Sultans, this magnificently decadent palace is a perfectly preserved time capsule of life at the top in this most exotic of empires.

Best for ages: 8+ | £17

Other worthwhile experiences in this destination if you have the time or the interest, closest first

Decorative metal Helmets Of Warriors Of Turkish Ottoman empire

Istanbul Military Museum

Istanbul , Marmara Region, Turkey[1.7 miles]

A fascinating and quirky military museum with an astonishing array of uniforms, weapons and battle standards. Upstairs, there is a room devoted to the revolutionary statesman Ataturk. Go around 3pm for an unforgettably weird re-creation of a 17th-century military band concert.

Best for ages: 13+ | £1

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Overview >
View of art museum in old hotel

Pera Museum

Istanbul, Marmara Region, Turkey[2.7 miles]

World-class collections of Ottoman art, tiles and ceramics – plus big-name travelling exhibitions – set in a former grand hotel.

Best for ages: 18+ | £2

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Overview >
Man and a woman looking at paintings in a modern art gallery

Istanbul Modern

Istanbul , Marmara Region, Turkey[2.9 miles]

A modern art museum housing the finest collection of modern and contemporary art in the country. The Modern’s temporary exhibits by Turkish and international artists – often organized in collaboration with MoMA (New York) and the Centre Pompidou (Paris) – are particularly exceptional.

Best for ages: 18+ | £4

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Overview >
Exterior of white museum with trees lining the entrance

Museum of Turkish Islamic Arts

Istanbul , Marmara Region, Turkey[4.6 miles]

One of the world’s finest collections of Islamic-influenced glassware, rugs, ceramics, metal work and ethnographic items.

Best for ages: 18+ | £4

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Overview >

Destination guides including or relevant to this place to stay


Marmara Region, Turkey

Exotic, inexhaustible and dynamic – East meets West head-on in this mesmerising city metropolis, famed for its extraordinarily rich history, superb food and shopping, and mind-blowingly magnificent, over-sized mosques.

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Overview >