Regular readers of Turkey's For Life will know that whenever we take off to somewhere other than Fethiye, we're not going off with the thought process of money is no object. Money is the object for us. And these days, as one of us has hit our late 30s and Barry is not too far behind, our little budget breaks are becoming more of a challenge.
Even since we started this blog, it's not that the general cost of an overnight stay in Turkey has increased particularly, it's more that, for us, the parameters have changed. Gone are the days when when we just said, 'oh, just a clean bed will suffice.'
Of course, we still want the clean bed - but we also want that clean bed to be in a comfortable room with an en-suite bathroom and we want that bed and bathroom to be in a friendly hotel / guesthouse / hostel (we're not too fussy about which one) with wi-fi connection in the rooms. Oh, and it's got to be convenient for easy exploration of the area. Breakfast (exploration fuel) is a necessity, too. You can see where our challenge lies: how to squish all these requirements into our limited budget.
View of the Marmara Sea from the roof terraceWe've just arrived back in Fethiye after a few days in the mesmerising metropolis that is Istanbul. We were there for a break and, because we were also taking part in the 2011 Istanbul Eurasia Marathon, finding the right accommodation was paramount. Oh, how we needed a comfortable room and a good shower. Oh, how we needed to stay in Sultanahmet! Well, the finish line for our run was in Sultanahmet - stumble over the finish line, pick up the medal and then stumble straight to the digs for a shower. Perfect!
Antique Hostel & Guesthouse, Sultanahmet, IstanbulIt was during our we-definitely-need-a-good-shower-after-the-run conversation that I remembered we'd stayed at Antique Hostel & Guesthouse in Sultanahmet in 2010 for my birthday. The rooms had been just about within our budget and, most importantly, they were clean, comfortable, roomy, the shower was powerful and the water, hot. A quick search online revealed they had a double, en-suite room free so we wasted no time in booking it.
Our room at the Antique Hostel & Guesthouse, Sultanahmet, IstanbulThis time, we were in a different room to the one we stayed in in 2010 but all was still well. A warm room (it was so cold outside), comfortable bed, room to manoeuvre, a wardrobe, drawers to unpack clothes and a chair to sit in. Also, the hot, powerful shower I remembered was there too, as well as a buffet breakfast that was served on the roof terrace. So, not only did we have the room we wanted, we also got views over the Marmara Sea to the Prince's Islands whilst eating breakfast.
These last few days have been our favourite Istanbul break for us (and we've had a good few breaks in this city!) but that's been partly due to our accommodation at Antique Hostel & Guesthouse. We wanted to visit Aya Sofya and Sultanahmet Camii again while we were in the city and the hostel is just round the corner from both. The metro tramway is also just a few minutes' walk away...as is the finish line for the Eurasia Marathon and 15km run. I think we may well be back to stay here another time in the future...
Antique Hostel & Guesthouse is on Kutlugün Caddesi, Sultanahmet.
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