“Romantic, rustic-chic guesthouse and family-friendly villa that put Alacati, the best-preserved town on Turkey’s Aegean coast, on the map”
No wonder. Everything feels effortless, from the gracious welcome to the 7 antique-chic bedrooms (located in the main guesthouse) with their floral quilts, embroidered linens and whitewashed walls. There’s a pool garden for lazy summer afternoons, and a fireplace for curling up beside on winter afternoons. For those seeking a little more independence, there's a gorgeous stone private villa next door with basic kitchens and secluded gardens. And come evening, it's a joy to venture out to the chi-chi boutiques and gourmet restaurants up the road. “A British reviewer once called our hotel 'unpretentious',” says Zeynep. “I didn’t know the word, but when I looked it up I thought: yes, that’s the secret of our success!”
- The intimate, easygoing atmosphere - you’ll feel more like a house guest than a customer
- Lovely local staff who are eager to share their insider tips
- Fabulous breakfast feasts on the vine-shaded patio, plus complimentary afternoon teas with homemade cakes
- The tranquil walled garden with a pool and hammock (both the guesthouse rooms and private villas come with one) - you’ll feel secluded from the holiday crowds and high winds even in peak season
- Beautiful sandy beaches 2km away, great watersports centres for windsurfing and diving, and Alacati itself - cobbled and charming with alfresco classical concerts in summer
- The nightlife in Alacati is lively during the summer season and music can be heard until the early hours of the morning
- Antique wooden floors means in the main guesthouse you might hear your neighbours coming and going
- The Economic Room is small and only one Blue Room room has a tiny balcony, but the lovely communal garden makes up for that
- The private villa faces another property across its garden and pool, so perhaps not for those who want complete privacy
- No children under 12 in the main guesthouse, except by special request - a high for some. All ages welcome in the private villa
Best time to go
Our top tips
- Boutique B&B
- 7 rooms + 2 cottages
- Breakfast only (+ walk to off-site restaurants)
- All ages welcome (restrictions apply)
- Open all year
- Outdoor Pool
- Spa Treatments
- Pet Friendly
- Disabled Access
- Beach Nearby
- Off-street Parking
- Restaurants Nearby
- Air Conditioning
- Guest Lounge
- Daily Maid Service
- Towels & Bedlinen
- Concierge Service
These rooms are made for romance. There are 5 doubles and 2 twin rooms in the main guesthouse, which vary in size Blue Rooms, Large Rooms or the Economic Room), in keeping with the original layout of the house. Some overlook the garden, others the lane. All are on the first floor, except one of the Large Rooms, which is in a stone cottage guarded by a pair of palm trees - ideal for courting couples. If you plan to stay more than a couple of nights, opt for a Large Room.
The décor is rustic luxe: lace-trim curtains, polished pinewood floors, beamed ceilings and antique dressers with vanity mirrors. Inviting beds are draped with mosquito nets, pretty patchwork quilts and crisp linens. Whitewashed walls are offset with vibrant kilims and baby blue woodwork - Zeynep tried 13 shades of blue before she was satisfied, an indication of the extraordinary attention to detail throughout the hotel. Original built-in cupboards provide ample storage space.
Bathrooms are small but spotless, with walk-in power showers, fluffy bathrobes, and olive oil soap, shampoo and shower gel.
All rooms have air con, though stone walls and high ceilings provide natural cool. There’s WiFi throughout, but no TVs, phones or minibars. Instead, browse the library of books and jazz CDs in the cosy living room.
We’re yet to see the Small Private Villa next to the main guesthouse, but the décor appears to be very similar to that of the guesthouse rooms. It has a twin bedroom, which perhaps looks a little dark, a living area and a kitchen area, plus it overlooks its pool in a gorgeous garden full of bougainvillaea. All ages are welcome in the private villa, and guests have access to all the facilities at the main guesthouse.
- Air conditioning
- Extra beds
- Mosquito net
- Safe box
Breakfast, served on the terrace in the main guesthouse until noon, is a traditional Turkish spread with knobs on: simit (sesame bagels) and warm rolls baked by the neighbour Mrs Ferhunde, home-grown olives, boiled eggs, kasar, tulum and feta cheeses, spicy ricotta and walnut spread, tomatoes, cucumbers, pine honey, home-made fig, quince and watermelon jams, fresh orange juice and seasonal fruit.
Throughout the day, the tempting aroma of carrot cake or lemon tart wafts through the lobby from the gorgeous country kitchen. Most guests rush back from the beach by 6pm so they don’t miss this complimentary afternoon tea. Those who can’t tear themselves away from the pool full stop are refreshed with minted lemonade, or gin and tonics flavoured with fresh basil.
Those staying in the private villa can self-cater in its simple kitchenette, though they do have breakfast included in their rates (eaten in the main guesthouse).
Alacati has plenty of classy (and pricey) restaurants. Agrilia, an atmospheric Italian in an old tobacco warehouse, serves fabulous artichoke and pistachio papardelle, T-bone steaks, and weekly tango lessons. Lavanta and Tuval - offering sophisticated Turkish and Mediterranean cuisine - are where weekending Istanbullus go to see and be seen. For seafood, pick any of the scenic restaurants along the harbour of Dalyankoy. Imren Patisserie specialises in sweets flavoured with mastic, grown exclusively in Cesme and Chios. Another local ‘delicacy’ is kumru - a grilled sausage, cheese and tomato sandwich.
- Restaurants nearby
- Bliss out by the pool; the tranquil garden is filled with olive, palm and cypress trees, vines of jasmine and honeysuckle and beds of geraniums, lavender and daisies - it's hard to leave
- Wander through Alacati’s cobbled streets, browsing the tasteful cafés, galleries and craft shops - there’s not a plastic chair in sight
- Trawl the lively Saturday market, centred around Pazaryeri Mosque, for antique vases, delicious melons and artichokes, and bargain Lacoste samples
- Soak up the scene at Ilica beach - 2km of pure white sand and underwater hot springs
- Learn how to windsurf, kitesurf or scuba dive at one of the many watersports centres on the Cesme peninsula; sheltered Yumru Cove is ideal for beginners
- Get dirty in Sifne Bay’s mud baths, whose therapeutic effects were praised by Pausanias back in 146AD
- Enjoy alfresco classical music concerts in Alacati’s main square in summer
- Take a boat trip to the sandy coves of Donkey Island, 5km from Cesme
- Dance under the stars at trendy beach bars like Babylon and Otto
- Take a day trip to admire the magnificent Roman ruins at Ephesus (150km)
Activities on site or nearby include:
- Boat trips
- Classical concerts
- Historical sites
- Museums / galleries
- Scuba diving
- Scuba diving courses
- Shopping / markets
- Well being
The policy is children over 12 only in the main guesthouse, but a younger child can sometimes be accommodated in Large Room (#8) by request. Children of all ages are welcome in the private villa. Teenagers will enjoy the watersports and beach bars nearby.
Teens (over 12)
Family friendly accommodation:
The Small Private Villa can sleep up to 5. It has a twin bedroom, plus the option of adding 2 single beds in the living area, and an extra mattress, too.
There are 2 baby cots available for use in Large Room 8 or the private villa - request in advance
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
Tas Otel is ideally situated on the quieter end of Kemalpasa Caddesi, Alacati’s main drag. Alacati is on the Cesme peninsula in western Turkey, 70km west of Izmir and just 3km from the sea. Cesme harbour is 10km away.
Fly into Izmir Adnan Menderes airport (90km; a 45-minute drive). There are direct flights from the UK or it's a short 1-hour hop from Istanbul. Click on the links below for a list of airlines serving these airports.
We'd recommend hiring a car. Although you can walk to the nearest beach in about 20 minutes and explore Alacati itself on foot, a car is indispensable for exploring the secluded beaches and historic sights further afield. Driving to Alacati; from Izmir is a doddle on the 6-lane Izmir-Cesme highway. It’s a long drive from Istanbul: a 2-hour high-speed ferry ride from Istanbul's Yenikapi quay to Bandirma quay, then a 340km drive through Balikesir, Manisa and Izmir to Alacati, which takes about 5 hours.
Alacati's lanes are very narrow and much of the town is pedestrianised, but you can park on the street near the hotel. If you want to hire a car, see our car rental recommendations. Alternatively the hotel can arrange local car hire during your stay.
If you’re not driving, it’s an hour on the Izmir Cesme Seyahat bus from Izmir central bus terminal or Uckuyular bus terminal.
Between June and September there’s a daily ferry service from the Greek island of Chios to Cesme (10km away), which takes just over an hour.
Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through i-escape.com.
More on getting to Turkey and getting around
- Izmir Adnan Menderes 90.0 km ADB
- Beach 2.0 km
- Shops 0.2 km
- Restaurant 0.2 km