One of the city’s longest established Bosphorus-front boutique hotels, Sumahan on the Water has certainly earned its name sat on the very edge of the dividing strait. Formerly an Ottoman-era distillery, it was converted into an award-winning hotel by its discerning Turkish-American owners. As the hotel is situated on the Asian side of the Bosphorus Strait, guests arrive from Europe in the hotel’s own launch. The hotel is situated in Çengelköy, a pretty village renowned for its fish restaurants.
Inside there is plenty of exposed brick and stone work, steel girders and split-levels, whilst from the outside the simple, functional façade benefits from symmetrically arranged arched windows, and the greenery-fringed dining deck at the front. There is a choice of luminous suites and bedrooms, each with its own personality, most with fire places, but all with magnificent views. The large bathrooms are well-appointed with thick Turkish towels and a choice of traditional colognes and special toiletries including rich natural soaps. Many of the rooms have their own Turkish-style bath or hamam. The furnishings are contemporary, think natural wood floors, neutral walls and plain drapes enlivened by tastefully upholstered soft furnishings, fresh flowers and trendy Italian light fittings.
In the hotel restaurant, Tapasuma, executive Chef Gökay Çakıroğlu builds upon the best of seasonal fish dishes with a unique twist on modern Turkish and Mediterranean cuisines. A striking eight-meter long marble bar displays innovative Turkish “mezzes” offering an unmatched culinary and sensory experience. It’s well-regarded so expect Istanbulites and other visitors as well as fellow guests. There is also the Waterfront Café with seaside terrace serving lunch, dinner and beverages.
There’s a small gym equipped with state of the art equipment, a very elegant Turkish bath, complete with an atmospherically-lit domed ceiling, marble slabs for lounging on and beautifully crafted basins for scooping warm water from.