JB visit to Istanbul
Istanbul Travel Blog› entry 1 of 1 › view all entries
I wake next morning and really get a sense of the city when I hear the 'call to prayer' from one of the Mosques nearby. Before my meeting I am taken around the city by a wonderful guide who explains the incredible history associated with Istanbul going beyond the Ottoman empire back to Roman times. We go into the famous 'Blue Mosque' and I am surprised that I do not have to cover my head. Then onto the Bazaar which is a 'rat run' of streets and shops. The atmosphere is great and if you decide you want to buy be prepared to bargain!
So to my carpet saga! The guide knows one of the carpet sellers and I am curious and decide I want to 'look'. We go to a shop off the main drag, in a building, in a lift to the 3rd floor where there is a room with hundreds of carpets.
I throw my carpet into the back of the car and head to the new Four Seasons Hotel on the Bosphorus (the real reason I came to Istanbul) I am quietly pleased that our new hotel will not open until July 1st this year as it gives me a reason to come back to Istanbul sooner rather than later and spend more time in this vibrant city.
Concierge tip - I ask Borak on concierge what you can do in Istanbul that you can't do anywhere else in the world he advises to hire a private boat for dinner, 2 hour cruise on the straights of the Bosphorus with Europe on one side and Asia on the other - cost around 500 euros.
JB tip - bring some comfortable walking shoes so you can really get the most out of this city.