THE HOUSE HOTEL BOSPHORUS
Salhane Sokak No.1, Ortaköy
26 rooms & suites
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ARCHITECTURE / DESIGN
Architecture & Design: Autoban
There aren’t many buildings that would look impressive alongside the grand minarets of Ortaköy Mosque. But the Simon Kalfa Building, one of the mosque’s closest neighbors, manages to positively sparkle. This Ottoman mansion near the Bosphorus was beginning show its age, but has now been spectacularly restored by the design team at Turkish studio Autoban – marrying classical shapes with brand-new, custom furnishings, and shaking up the local hotel scene in the process.
It marks the third time that Canan Özdemir and Ferit Baltacioglu, who launched The House Hotel Group in Istanbul, have worked with Autoban. And in some ways, there are similarities between the interiors here and those at the group’s other hotels. Autoban’s favorite materials, including oak, brass, marble and walnut, pop up frequently in public spaces. And there are neatly beveled moldings framing walls in the bedrooms, meeting room and lounge. But Seyhan Özdemir and Sefer Caglar, the people driving Autoban since 2003, also used fixtures and fittings that would complement the building’s uniqueness.
Robe-clad statues, for example, border the lounge area’s stone fireplace. These wouldn’t have looked out of place on the hotel’s classical-style façade, among the white balconies and decorative stone cornices. At night, specially designed chandeliers and lights hidden inside shelves help to illuminate the lounge. Drinks and light snacks are brought to guests as they sink into mottled beige sofas (custom made by Autoban) and enjoy views over to the Asian side of Istanbul. Breakfast is served in the intimate restaurant, attached, which supports the hotel group’s main concept: to make guests feel relaxed, at home and well looked after.
The hotel covers more than 1,000 sq m and is spread across five floors. Guest rooms, a lounge, a fitness area and a panoramic meeting space can all be found on the first floor. Rooms take up the intermediary levels and the very top floor – wrapped by a terrace overlooking the Bosphorus – is completely given over to the hotel’s three penthouse suites. Each has a name inspired by the Balyan family (a famous dynasty of Ottoman imperial architects) and the interiors feature golden drapes and 3D-effect wooden floors. The largest suite, Penthouse Bosphorus, even has its own living area with high, sloping ceilings.