“Live like a trendy Istanbulite in one of nine stylish self-catering apartments (sleeping 4-7), set in hip yet historic Galata”
Each apartment is as cool and eclectic as the neighbourhood, combining original features - lofty ceilings, ornate plasterwork, tiled floors - with contemporary furnishings and modern kitchens. Some are within touching distance of the 14th-century Galata Tower, others have fabulous views over the Bosphorus and the Golden Horn. All have winding streets full of quirky shops and charming cafés on their doorstep, and are only a short tram ride from the historical bounty of Sultanahmet (Topkapi Palace, the Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia). After dark, the bevy of bars and clubs in cosmopolitan Beyoglu is within easy walking distance, but well out of earshot.
- The chance to live like a local: you’ll get an authentic taste of Istanbul wandering around Galata’s pretty back streets
- Excellent value for money for groups of friends, families, and couples travelling together
- Cool, calm and contemporary interiors, with large sash windows that frame stunning views of the Golden Horn or Galata Tower
- Ideal for sightseeing, shopping and partying. Buzzing bar- and boutique-lined Istiklal Caddesi is a short stroll away, and the trams, metro and ferries will take you almost anywhere in the city
- A great location for foodies. Stock up at local markets, sample trad Turkish (or fusion) fare nearby, or book one of their own foodie tours
- No lifts, so it can be a slog up to the second- or third-floor apartments
- No private outside space other than Hendek Loft, although Shah Place and the Petraki Place apartments have access to communal roof terraces
- Most apartments have one bathroom between two or three bedrooms (though some have second bathrooms or additional toilets)
- Istanbul, like any other city, experiences its fair share of renovation works; check upon enquiry if any neighbouring buildings might be undergoing a makeover
Best time to go
Our top tips
- Boutique Apartments
- 9 apartments sleeping 4-7
- Self-catering (restaurants nearby)
- All ages welcome
- Open all year
- Spa Treatments
- Pet Friendly
- Disabled Access
- Beach Nearby
- Off-street Parking
- Restaurants Nearby
- Air Conditioning
- Guest Lounge
- Daily Maid Service
- Towels & Bedlinen
The nine apartments, all in different buildings near Galata Tower, mix gleaming white walls, high ceilings and original tiled floors with contemporary fittings and comfy soft furnishings in neutral tones.
We stayed in third-floor Pasha Place, which sleeps 6-7 in three bedrooms (two doubles and a twin). Its heavy front door opens onto a hallway that doubles as a dining room, and its bright living room has two squishy sofas. The fabulous views over the Golden Horn almost render the flat-screen TV obsolete, and are best enjoyed with a glass of wine at the bar table nestling in the bay window. The bedrooms are simple and uncluttered, with wooden floors and walls dotted with artwork. One double and the twin room share the same striking view as the living room; the second double has an internal window with no view. The sparkling bathroom is small but perfectly formed, with white ceramic tiles and a rain shower, and there’s a separate toilet.
Large third-floor Aslan Place also sleeps 5-6 in two double bedrooms and a twin; it has a shower room and a second toilet. It looks out over Galata Tower, with a lively pedestrianised square below.
First-floor Petraki Place (sleeps 4-5) has frescoes and exposed brick walls, with two good-sized double bedrooms (one with an ensuite shower), a small single room suitable for a child, and a second shower room. On the floor above is Petraki Place II (sleeps 6-7), which we're yet to see, is the largest apartment with two doubles and a twin room. Both of these apartments have access to the building’s shared roof terrace, with sweeping views across the city. Since our visit, three-bedroom Petraki Place III has been added, offering the added bonus of a private hammam, as well as Petraki IV on the third floor (sleeps five in one double, one twin and a single).
In a nearby building is third floor Shah Place (sleeps 4-5 in one double and one twin room) and first floor Shah Place II (sleeps four adults and a child). Each has original frescoes, antiques and velvet headboards, as well as views over the narrow streets below.
Since our visit, fifth-floor Hendek Loft has also joined the ranks. We are yet to personally view this property, but it is located in an elegant 19th-century building close to Galata Tower.
All apartments come with WiFi, cable TVs, hairdryers, irons and ironing boards, washing machines, and plenty of maps, guidebooks and magazines to help you plan your stay.
- Air conditioning
- Central heating
- Coffee / tea making
- Coffee maker
- Cots Available
- Extra beds
- Full kitchen
- Hob or stove
- Satellite TV
- Washing machine
You can create anything from simple snacks to lavish meals in the apartments’ gleaming kitchens, which contain all the necessary equipment: microwaves, fridge/freezers, toasters, utensils, pots, pans, kettles, cafetières, teapots, even dishwashers. Shah Place and Aslan Place have no ovens, but all have hobs. There are dining tables in the tiled hallways or by the windows in the airy living rooms.
Tea, coffee and a large bottle of drinking water will be waiting for you on arrival, along with essentials such as dishwasher tabs, washing-up liquid and bin bags. Galata has plenty of small family-run grocery shops, mobile fruit and veg sellers, and supermarkets close by where you can stock up.
Dining out is equally easy, with a vast array of restaurants nearby. Adigüzel by Galata Tower is a reliable lokanta (mezze bar) with friendly staff and good home-cooking. In Beyoglu, Leb-i Derya is a sophisticated restaurant with incredible views over the Bosphorus. For even more stunning views splurge at NuPera, a bar/restaurant/club complex that houses 4 different venues. Dress to impress and book ahead, especially at weekends.
For contemporary Turkish cuisine, try the sleek Autoban-designed Münferit, or Cezayir, where you can dine alfresco in lovely gardens. Head to Nevizade Sokak or stunning Rococo arcade Cicek Pasaji (‘The Flower Passage’) for traditional eateries serving old-school mezze and raki, Turkey’s potent aniseed-flavoured tipple. Also worth trying is the trendy House Café on bustling Istiklal Caddesi. It's in the same historic apartment block as 360 Istanbul, a hip rooftop bar and restaurant with a view that lives up to its name.
- Coffee / tea making
- Coffee maker
- Full kitchen
- Hob or stove
- Restaurants nearby
- Climb the spiral stairs up 14th-century Galata Tower (or choose the easy option and take the lift) for 360-degree views of the city and the Golden Horn. There’s a restaurant and nightclub at the top, too
- Take the tram or walk across the Galata Bridge to Sultanahmet, the heart of Old Istanbul, where you’ll find the city’s most iconic sights: the Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, the Blue Mosque and the Basilica Cistern
- Walk down to Karaköy fish market and join the locals eating hamsi, deep-fried Black Sea anchovies served with a squeeze of lemon. You can also buy fresh fish to cook back at your apartment
- Tarkan and Julia can also arrange a two- to seven-hour orientation walk or foodie tour with one of their tried and trusted English-speaking guides - young Istanbul ladies with their fingers firmly on the city's pulse, who'll show you hidden eateries, artisans' workshops and practical info (tram stops etc)
- Taste some of the 370 varieties of wine available at Sensus, an underground cellar by Galata Tower
- Take a ferry up the Bosphorus, marvelling at the opulent palaces, lavish villas, traditional wooden houses and crumbling castles that line both sides of the strait
- Shop ‘til you drop in the up-and-coming Turkish boutiques along Serdari-I Erkem Street in Galata, the maze of stalls in the Grand Bazaar, the shopping malls of sophisticated Levant, and the international designer stores in Nisantasi
- Take a stroll - or an old-fashioned tram ride - down Istiklal Caddesi in Beyoglu, a pedestrian thoroughfare lined with shops, patisseries, galleries and bars
- Beyoglu is also Istanbul’s club central, where you can party until the small hours: try NuTeras (a swanky rooftop bar-cum-club) and Babylon (for world music)
Activities on site or nearby include:
- Boat trips
- Historical sites
- Museums / galleries
- Shopping / markets
- Traditional cultures
- Wine tasting
Children are very welcome, and families will certainly appreciate the space and flexibility of a self-catering apartment. The apartments are found across several architecturally intriguing, historic buildings, each on a street within a lively mixed community and plenty of food shops nearby.
We think it would work best with teenagers, who will enjoy the shopping, music and bustling city life on the doorstep, as well as (hopefully) some of the rich history and Islamic architecture - the owners can arrange bespoke guided tours to suit all ages and interests. All apartments have free WiFi and flatscreen TVs.
Babies (0-1 years), Children (4-12 years), Teens (over 12)
Family friendly accommodation:
Extra beds and baby cots can be added to the apartments, and all have twin or single rooms that would suit children. The apartments have no bathtubs but showers only.
Three apartments (Petraki Place I, Petraki Place III and Shah Place II) are on the first floor; Petraki Place II is on the second; and Petraki Place IV, Pasha Place, Aslan Place, and Shah Place I are on the third floor. Hendek Loft is on the fifth floor. So bear in mind that you may have to negotiate three flights of stairs with pushchairs and little ones if you are in one of the higher-placed apartments.
Babysitting can be arranged, see Rates
- Baby cots
- Baby bedding
- High chairs
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
Kids Activities on site:
- Scrabble and playing cards
Kids Activities nearby:
- Boat trips up the Bosphorus and to Princes Islands
- Shopping in the colourful and huge Grand Bazaar
- Topkapi Palace, brimming with exotic intrigue
- Musical instrument shops
- Take the elevator to the top of Galata Tower for 360º views
- Galata also has the world's largest miniature park (models, playground, labyrinth)
- Airport: 45 minutes (Istanbul Airport) and 1hr30m (Sabiha Gokcen Airport)
- Hospital: 5 minutes
- Shops: 2 minutes
The apartments are located in several different buildings in Galata, a historic and bohemian district in central Istanbul. Galata is just above the Bosphorus, near Beyoglu, and linked to Sultanahmet by bridge and tram. They're all within a short distance of Istiklal Caddesi, tram stops, the metro and ferry piers.
> Google map showing all locations (new window)
Istanbul has two airports - Istanbul Airport (40km away), which is served by many international flights, and Sabiha Gökçen Airport (45km away), which is mainly used by budget carriers. Click on the links below for a list of airlines serving them.
From the Airport:
It's a 45-minute taxi ride from Istanbul Airport and about an hour from Sabiha Gökçen Airport, though the journey can take much longer during rush hour. The apartment owners can arrange transfers for you - enquire when booking. There are also shuttle buses from both airports to Taksim Square; from there it's a five-minute taxi ride to the apartments.
The nearest ferry services (for boats across the Bosphorus and further afield) are at Karaköy, Eminonu and Kabatas.
Detailed directions to your apartment will be sent when you book through i-escape.
More on getting to Turkey and getting around
- Istanbul Airport 40.0 km IST
- Sabiha Gökçen Airport 45.0 km SAW
- Beach 20.0 km
- Shops 0.1 km
- Restaurant 0.1 km