Pera Palace Hotel reopens with its past grandeur

by 14 May 2010

Pera Palace Hotel, with 118 years of history will reopen at the beginning of September after an intense restoration.

Pera Palace Hotel will reopen on September 1, 2010 this year after a two year, 23 million Euro restoration project. The hotel features 115 rooms including 16 suites named after the hotel’s most illustrious guests and retains the original grandeur of the property whilst offering state-of-the-art facilities true to the 21st century destination hotel experience.

Located in the TepebaÅŸi district of Pera, Pera Palace Hotel overlooks the Golden Horn. The establishment procedure of the hotel began in 1892 and its opening ball was held in 1895. Pera Palace Hotel the first luxury hotel in the Ottoman Empire, providing the last destination stop in the East for passengers onboard The Orient Express.

Istanbul resident, Alexander Vallaury designed the hotel, integrating the styles of Neo-classical, Art Nouveau and the Oriental. The result was an elegant property which soon became a highly sought after address for the social elite.

Pera Palace Hotel has achieved iconic status not only for its pioneering techniques – it was the first building in Istanbul other than Ottoman palaces to offer electricity, hot running water and an elevator crafted out of cast iron and wood, but also for being a symbol of urban culture in Istanbul.

The hotel has borne witness to many historical events, including both World Wars, the Occupation of Istanbul, Turkish War of Independence and the founding of the Turkish Republic.

It has also played host to a wide range of luminaries, celebrities, politicians and Heads of State. The signature rooms have been named after the illustrious guests who walked through the doors. These include the leader and founder of modern Turkey, Atatürk; crime writer Agatha Christie, who allegedly found her inspiration for “Murder on the Orient Express”, the Emperor of Austria-Hungary, Franz Joseph, King Edward VIII, Greta Garbo, Pierre Loti, Ernest Hemingway and many more.

The hotel also caters the meetings and events with its sun lit historical style meeting rooms and one modern meeting room dividable into three sections. A 380 square metre SPA features a traditional Turkish Hammam, steam bath, jacuzzi, sauna and treatment rooms. An indoor swimming pool with jet stream and fully equipped fitness centre is also available to guests.

Pera Palace returns to offer Istanbul a luxury hotel steeped in history, with an impressive choice of restaurant and bar venues. French style Patisserie de Pera will offer ground coffee and croissants in the morning, while Kubbeli Saloon Tea Lounge reopens for afternoon tea with the old school grandeur of high ceilings, corner windows and live piano music. Kubbeli Saloon can also be used for private events.

Agatha restaurant will serve French-Italian-Turkish specialities as a tribute to the three major stops of the former Orient Express. For those wishing to recapture the traditions of the past, the Orient Bar returns as a social meeting point, with a wide range of wines, spirits and cocktails from which to choose.

See Luxos pages for the Pera Palace Hotel.