Mandarin Oriental Bosphorus, Istanbul
Istanbul’s newest luxury hotel comes to life in one of the most magnificent locations along the Bosphorus. Inspired by the defining role of the iconic waterway in the city’s history and character, the new hotel is a contemporary ode to Istanbul and its unique position in the world. With careful attention to detail, The Mandarin Oriental Bosphorus exudes a strong sense of place with a refined elegance. Bespoke materials and features throughout the hotel provide elements of surprise, creating a unique luxury experience that bridges together all the curiosities of the city’s rich and layered history, with an eye to an equally rich and colorful future.
The double height entry of the hotel opens to dramatic surroundings of marble, silver travertine and intricately patterned bronze screens in a contemporary, sunlit space. At the center of the foyer is a striking chandelier doubling as a bespoke timepiece. A modern interpretation of the world’s earliest sundials, the chandelier symbolizes the powerful bridging of time, a concept that lays the foundation for the hotel’s thoughtful, site-specific interiors.
Dark gray marble floors are arranged in a herringbone-like pattern, creating a sense of four distinct directions guiding the flow of guest movement from the entry. Directly ahead, a prominent gallery corridor becomes a focal point of the ground floor with an elongated marble basin holding delicate Cesm-I Bulbul (‘nightingale’s eye) glassware to symbolize the Bosphorous itself. Lining are the gallery are ‘gifts’ of the Bosphorous, showcasing its role in the exchange of goods and ideas. Six Cabinets of Curiosities, each carefully curated with particular collections, represent six themes: Time, Tradition, Emblems, Discovery, Adornment and Flavor, that serve as direct inspiration for the design throughout the hotel. Beyond the gallery, the lobby lounge offers guests a comfortable, fresh space with a warm color palette anchored in shades of purple and gold.
Located to the left of the entry, the reception showcases the decorative bronze metal screens seen throughout the hotel, the intricate pattern inspired by a traditional form of weaving. The circular reception lounge, partially enclosed by a unique metal and glass screen seen again in the ground floor bar, connects to a small outdoor patio and intimate reading room.
To the right of the entry, jewel box-like storefront windows invite guests to pause and admire the shop displays. Across the hall is the hotel bar, where guests are enveloped in a masculine, yet refined oval shaped space facing the outdoor courtyard and adjoining intimate fumoir. The bar itself is framed by leather panels and metal stitching along the bar front and structural columns, while above gold pendant lighting, contemporary bronze liquid metal panels inspired by Turkish typography extend organically above courtyard view windows.
Inspired by the sights and smells of the Bazaar, the restaurant at the far end of the ground floor draws from the colors and textures of coffee, cinnamon and saffron. Entering near the undulating dark metals of the show kitchen, guests are instantly drawn into the energy emanating from the central action. Above faded oak herringbone flooring, large-scale wire chandeliers balance the venue’s rich colors and materials with delicate, lantern-like lighting.
The hotel spa is designed as a grand circular Zen garden. Glass enclosed garden panels border the outer most circular tier, while Ottoman-inspired archways create an interior sense of calming rhythm. Each ring is designed to slow the sense of time as guests make their way around the central garden and into a serene state. Free-form decorative metal screens at the spa entry connect again to the looping patterns of traditional weaving. Elegant and tranquil, the indoor pool features semi-private cabanas and a large backlit ceiling cove inspired by Turkish landscapes. Adjacent to the pool, a wood grain corridor inlaid with geometric patterns leads to Hammams, both of which incorporate a layered geometric ceiling inspired by the intricate designs of traditional Turkish baths.
Upstairs, the guest corridors set an elegant and thoughtful tone with warm woods and textured wall coverings. Details like the Cesm-I Bulbul pendant lighting and patterned bronze mirror reflecting that of the metal screens on the ground floor seamlessly carry the design narrative into the guest rooms and suites.
In the guest rooms, organic textures and patterns along with bespoke metal and leather detailing exude a natural sophistication. Bedside lighting projects the reoccurring screen pattern, while a sliding wall panel to the bathroom features a motif inspired by the Turkish tree of life. Throughout the space, refined furnishings and unique, sometimes concealed, details such as the Ottoman inspired interior lining of the mini bar cabinet, invite guests to explore and discover the many nuances of the design.
The hotel’s featured suites continue the design language of the guest rooms while showcasing individual character and details unique to each offering. In the rooftop suites, views of the Bosphorous are complemented by curated pops of color and artful features like small scale ‘cabinets of curiosity’ and decorative stone wall panels. Drawing from the theme of luxury travel, the Specialty Suite features sculptural lighting fixtures inspired by the location and a bespoke traveling luggage case in the closet. The Bridal Suite takes on a feminine, celebratory nature with shades of rose and lavender, curved lines and metal details reminiscent of sparkling champagne. The largest suite offering, the Presidential, unfolds in an eloquent arrangement of bold shapes and patterns and standout materials designed to wow guests with intimate spaces that exude custom residential luxury.
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