Sumahan on the Water
Opened in May 2005, Sumahan on the Water is a fantastically stylish renovation of an old building on the Asian shore of the Bosphorus. The Sumahan was formerly a 19th-century Ottoman distillery that made raki, eventually purchased by the present owner’s grandfather. Consequently, the hotel has the kind of spaciousness and cool aesthetic common to converted industrial buildings in London and New York but rare in Istanbul. The renovation is superb and the 20 design rooms each have lovely Bosphorus views, modern fireplaces, fashionable furniture and all entertainment and communication mod-cons. There are 13 very spacious suites; a number of them are duplexes boasting their own petite terrace gardens where you can sit on the lawn and enjoy the vista. Downstairs is Kordon, an excellent fish restaurant belonging to the same owner. As with A’jia, the location could be either a dream or a hassle. Though the hotel’s private launch will whisk you across the Bosphorus to Kabata on the European side in 15 minutes, or you can hop in a cab into town – a 30-minute ride – from the hotel’s front door.