The Istanbul Edition
Superb design in this luxury lifestyle hotel
The Istanbul Edition, like the other hotels in the Edition group featuring the concept by Ian Schrager (famous for the New York nightclub Studio 54), was designed to provide a "home away from home" for leisure and business travellers, catering in particular to contemporary business visitors by providing sophisticated equipment that make it easy to do business in what becomes an "office away from the office." Edition hotels are designed to be the first global branded lifestyle hotels.
The first Edition opened in Waikiki Beach in September 2010, and the Edition in Istanbiul opened in the first quarter of 2011. These hotels are designed to be a unique experience, not just a place to sleep. Each hotel is an unexpected and refreshing location, nothing like typical "chain hotels." All share the concept of lifestyle rather than appearance.
The Istanbul Edition, in the lively Levent district on the European side of the city (just five minutes walk from a massive shopping mall), was designed by Gabellini Sheppard Associates, and the fifteen-storey tower offers 77 oversized guestrooms and suites with rosewood or soaped oak walls, ceilings and floors, enhanced by custom materials, exotic finishes and fabrics, silk rugs, and marble guest bathrooms with floor-to-ceiling enclosed rain showers.
The double height lobby features gold and silver leaf mosaic detailing, and travertine floor and walls. Facilities include the world-renowned Cipriani Restaurant, the Gold Bar with private garden terrace; the magnificent full-floor 2,800 square-foot Presidential Suite with superb finish and furnishings; the 20,000 square-foot Espa spa; luxury retail boutiques; a private drawing room with honesty bar; a screening room for first-run movies and private screenings; an event space, and a night club.
Interiors at the hotel reflect Ottoman traditions of fine craftsmanship, with an emphasis on comfort and wellbeing. It reflects the finest Turkish culture in a contemporary context. The colour palette is based on bronze and silver-gold, with the extensive use of light and dark timbers creating a warm and intimate atmosphere. The domed lobby is resplendent in gold leaf and silver travertine stone, immediately giving the impression of having entered a special world, with elevator lobby in gold mosaic tiles, and a dramatic open staircase in silver travertine and rosewood, running up to the drawing room on the mezzanine floor. On one side of the lobby there is a wall-sized aquarium with tropical fish, forming a screen between lobby and Gold Bar.
All the guest rooms are generously sized, at 420 square feet, with stunning design and discreet luxury. Each includes an entrance, bedroom area, work station and seating area, with panoramic windows overlooking the city. The large flat-screen Bang & Olufsen LCD televisions have integrated stereo. Linen is custom imported. High-speed wireless internet is free for all guests. The loft rooms are larger, and include a teak floor terrace with landscaping and seating units, and views over the city. The Presidential Suite is a superbly-decorated retreat consisting of a large bedroom and living room, ideal for use as an event space for private gatherings. The five-fixture clear glass bathrooms offer natural lighting with privacy curtains.
The Gold Bar is accessed from the hotel lobby, but it immediately brings visitors into an exotic world, with a welcoming and mellow dark-wood interior, featuring a bright, twenty-foot-long aquarium in which tropical fish heighten the effect of a relaxing dreamscape. Near the bar there is a seating area of deep, low sofas around a central table, inspired by the traditional Turkish tea room and designed for the time-honoured ritual of tea and conversation. An outdoor terrace with high hedges provides a lush, natural setting, offering privacy from the bustling metropolis. Expert and courteous staff offer a comprehensive selection of local and international specialities.
The 20,000 square-foot, three-floor Espa spa offers an unparalleled spa experience, in which guests can benefit from treatments for beauty, health and wellness in a setting of exquisite luxury. The décor exudes opulence, with fine timbers, embossed bronze floors, upholstered walls and comfortable seating. A comprehensive menu of beauty and health treatments is offered in the multiple treatment rooms, which include a VIP suite decorated with patterned leather floors and smoky walls, where couples can unwind in the oversize bathtub, steam shower, and the unique relaxation bed suspended from the ceiling. In addition, there is a stunning pool and a state-of-the-art fitness centre. The spa is open every day from 9.00 a.m. to 10.00 p.m.
The first Cipriani restaurant was founded in 1931 by Giuseppe Cipriani near Piazza San Marco in Venice, and it soon became a hallmark of uncomplicated luxury and an essential high-society experience. Today, the name has extended to a few carefully-chosen venues in the world's most legendary cities. At the Istanbul Edition, Cipriani offers all the sophistication of the Cipriani heritage, along with the relaxed joie de vivre of European café society. Interiors feature timber-panelled walls, signature bentwood chairs, and generous amounts of travertine. There is a Martini bar for pre-prandial aperitifs, and a large terrace for open-air dining. The menu features many specialities reflecting the venue's Venetian origins, such as a house Bellini cocktail, appetizers including prosciutto crudo, baby artichokes salad and grilled polenta, while pasta dishes comprise favourites such as veal cannelloni or the vegetarian risotto primavera. The restuarant is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and from 5 p.m. to midnight, every day.
Luxos recommends: house Bellini cocktail; daily ravioli special; fillet of sole