“History and luxury go hand-in-hand at this unique cave hotel in Uchisar; perfect for rest and romance”
Each of the 30 cave rooms is carved into the tuff of the surrounding cliff face. The exposed rock of what were once dwellings and animal shelters is now covered with tasteful artwork, and antique kilims line the floors to keep things cosy.
No 2 rooms are the same size or shape, and they are spread over several floors, but all are stunning so you'll be happy wherever you end up. One has ancient dovecotes peppering its walls, another has a historical spinning wheel, others have a marble fountain or an open fire. Reception will help you choose when you enquire. All are atmospherically lit, with comfortable queensize beds, marble bathrooms (most with jacuzzi tubs) and valuable artefacts throughout.
Cheapest, but still spacious and luxurious, are the Deluxe Rooms. Upgrade to a Deluxe Suite for a bit more space and a sofa or soft leather armchairs. Junior Superior Suites and Superior Suites are larger still, and most have magnificent views. Top of the tree are the Spa Suites (a bedroom plus a massage room), and the 3 enormous Imperial Suites. One of these, the magnificent Sultan’s Cave Suite (90 sq.m), has a wine cellar for tastings, a 16th-century Cardinal’s altar, 2 bathrooms, and a stargazing window in its ceiling.
Our Junior Superior Suite, Catalkaya, was super spacious, and had a separate living area with a soft leather sofa in front of a roaring fire. The huge bathroom had a double jacuzzi, a walk-in rain shower and fluffy white bathrobes. In the morning, we woke to see hot-air balloons drifting past the window, and we watched their progress from our small patch of garden, and later, the tub.
The award-winning, fine-dining restaurant, Lil’a, is open every evening. It’s a candlelit room-with-a-view, with wooden floors and ceilings, pale stone walls adorned with rare textiles, and ornate wooden cabinets holding antique kaftans and exquisite jewellery.
As well as international fare such as steak, and more typical Turkish dishes, Lil'a offers a range of traditional Cappadocian home-cooked dishes that are getting harder to find elsewhere. Vegetables and herbs are from the hotel’s organic garden, and served with a great selection of Anatolian wine. We loved the lentil soup, the meze of baby dolmades and the Nevsehir Tava, a recipe created by a native of Nevsehir at the beginning of the 1900s: lamb, pepper, garlic and tomato are cooked in a traditional casserole in a brick oven and served with rice pilaf.
Picnics and romantic dinners à deux in the valley can be catered for, while the alfresco bar is perfect for a sunset cocktail or stargazing around the firepit.
Buffet breakfasts are served in the light-filled dining room or on the sunlit terrace, with tables piled high with cheese, cold meats, cereals, fruit and pastries. We rounded off with tasty omelettes - the chef came over with a small gas burner and prepared them at our table.
If you venture out, try sophisticated Elai in the shadow of the fortress. We took in the views from the terrace with a glass of local wine before feasting on tandir (lamb shanks) and Turkish crème brulée.
The hotel welcomes families and is well kitted out for them, with extra beds, baby cots, family rooms, connecting rooms, babysitting and baby equipment
Babies (0-1 years), Children (4-12 years), Teens (over 12)
The Oriental Cave is recommended for families. Junior Superior Suites, Superior Suites and Imperial Suites can all fit 1 rollaway bed; some can fit 2; the smaller rooms can fit a baby cot. Some rooms interconnect; please ask when booking
Baby cots and highchairs
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
There’s no lifeguard so small children need to be supervised around the pool area and when climbing up and down the stone stairways throughout the hotel.