High Tea at Pera Palace in Istanbul
As a lover of tea and iconic hotels and restaurants, visiting the Pera Palace Hotel in Istanbul for a High Tea experience was on my bucket list for years. This historic hotel has welcomed guests for over a century and certainly lives up to its reputation for grandeur.
Nestled amidst the shimmering art-nouveau masterpieces, Pera Palace Hotel in Istanbul stands tall as a beacon of luxury and history. This century-old hotel is a stylish sanctuary that seamlessly blends old-world charm with modern-day elegance, making it the perfect abode for explorers looking to soak in the Turkish city’s breathtaking views.
Pera Palace Hotel’s story began in 1895 when it was built to accommodate passengers of the famed Orient Express. This long-distance train had become a symbol of luxury travel in Europe. The renowned architect Alexander Vallaury brought his exceptional neo-classical and oriental design skills to create the hotel’s stunning exterior and interior. Over decades, it has welcomed many famous guests, including Agatha Christie, who wrote her novel “Murder on the Orient Express” while staying at the hotel.
A symbol of sophistication
Another interesting fact about the Pera Palace Hotel is that it was actually the first hotel in Istanbul to have electricity and an elevator. This was a big deal in the early 1900s, and it helped establish the hotel as a symbol of modernity and sophistication.
From the moment I stepped into the opulent lobby of the Pera Palace Hotel, I knew I was in for a treat. The atmosphere was incredibly elegant, with high ceilings, ornate decorations, and plush furniture. As I made my way to the dining room for high tea, I was struck by the attention to detail in every aspect of the experience. The table settings were beautiful, with silver tea sets and delicate china, and the ambiance was enhanced by the live piano music in the background.
The food was simply divine. The high tea menu included a variety of sweet and savory treats, such as scones with clotted cream and jam, mini sandwiches, and a selection of cakes and pastries. Everything was beautifully presented and tasted even better than it looked. The tea selection was also impressive, with a range of high-quality loose-leaf teas to choose from.
The Pera Palace High Tea is served in the hotel’s Kubbeli Lounge, which has long been famed for its tea parties – a traditional afternoon outing among the Istanbul elite. The tea lounge offers live piano music between 15:00-18:00, adding to the magical atmosphere.
During my visit, I also had the opportunity to explore some other areas of the hotel, including the famous Agatha Christie Room. This room is named after the famous author, who has stayed at the Pera Palace Hotel several times. The room has been preserved as a museum of sorts, with exhibits about Christie’s life and work and artifacts from her hotel stays.
From Agatha Christie to Ernest Hemingway, the hotel has hosted some of the world’s most famous personalities, including kings, queens, emperors, and presidents. Today, Pera Palace Hotel continues to stand out as an illustrious icon that encapsulates the very essence of Istanbul’s history and heritage.
Overall, my Pera Palace High Tea experience was truly unforgettable. Every detail was carefully crafted from the stunning surroundings to the delicious food and live piano music to create a luxurious and memorable experience. If you’re looking for a special way to treat yourself while in Istanbul, the Pera Palace High Tea is definitely worth checking out.
I highly recommend High Tea to anyone seeking a unique and indulgent experience in Istanbul. Whether you’re a tea lover, a history buff, or just someone who appreciates the finer things in life, this afternoon tea is sure to impress. And with its beautiful surroundings, delicious food, and live music, it’s definitely an experience that will stay with you long after you’ve finished your last sip of tea.
How to get to Pera Palace Hotel
The Pera Palace Hotel is located near Taksim Square in the Beyoglu district of Istanbul, Turkey. There are several ways to get to the hotel, depending on your starting point:
From Istanbul’s city center: Take a taxi directly to the hotel or use public transportation. The Taksim Square metro station and Kabatas tram stop are within walking distance of the hotel.
From Istanbul Ataturk Airport: Take the M1 metro line to Zeytinburnu station. Transfer to the T1 tram line and take it to Karakoy station. From Karakoy, take the funicular to Taksim Square. From Taksim Square, walk or take a taxi to the hotel.
From Sabiha Gokcen Airport: Take the Havatas bus to Taksim Square. From Taksim Square, walk or take a taxi to the hotel.
It’s always a good idea to check public transportation schedules and routes ahead of time to avoid any confusion or delays.
Tips for visiting Pera Palace Hotel
If you’re planning to visit the Pera Palace for a High Tea experience, here are a few tips to help you make the most of it:
- Make a reservation: The High Tea is a popular attraction, so it’s a good idea to make a reservation in advance to secure your spot.
- Dress appropriately: It is important to dress appropriately. Smart casual attire is recommended.
- Be prepared to splurge: The experience is pricey, but it is worth it. Be prepared to splurge a little for this special treat.
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