Whotel1Converted out of a strong of rowhouses that were built in the 1870s by Sarkis Balyan to accommodate the workers from nearby Dolmabahçe Palace, the W Hotel brings colourful, stylish decor to the erstwhile forgotten district of Akaretler a short walk inland from the water at Beşiktaş.

For those who know the chain what W has to offer won't come as much of a surprise. This is hotel that prides itself on service and on having all the mod cons - the one snag I found with my room was that the busy streetside location made it impossible to have a window open at night which meant running the air-con all the time. 

That aside I couldn't fault the room on comfort or its colourful Ottoman-inspired design, a feature that also ran across the public areas, sometimes in tandem with a take on loft living with art and design books littered about. 

For those who like their history it's worth knowing that the hotel's presidential suite was at one time home to Fausto Zonaro (1854-1929), the Italian-born court painter to Sultan Abdülhamid II. A house lived in by Atatürk and his mother during the First World War has also been incorporated into the complex. WHotel2

Where the W perhaps loses out is that it is not right on the waterside and that it doesn't have a pool. On the other hand it does have a set of sweet curtained garden kiosks where it woud be fun to lounge after a hard day's sightseeing. 

Thumbs up: Colourful, modern rooms, good food, easy access to most city sights

Thumbs down: No pool and not right on the water

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Tel: 0212-381 2121

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