Istanbul experts - need apartment advice

Old Sep 18th, 2011, 11:04 AM
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Istanbul experts - need apartment advice

After a day of looking, we've narrowed it down to five possibilities.

It's just two of us and a few of these have more than 1 BR. Price, however is a tertiary consideration. We are more interested in a good location (1st priority) and apartment itself (2nd priority). We have rented 2BR's before for the two of us (no 3BRs yet!) just to have the "right" apartment.

Please weigh in!!!

http://www.vrbo.com/268941
http://www.vrbo.com/337898
http://www.vrbo.com/265004
http://www.vrbo.com/163253
http://www.vrbo.com/308301
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Old Sep 18th, 2011, 12:35 PM
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I like the last two apartments and have bookmarked them for myself. However, I find it odd that the owner entered the comments on the last apartment. I have rented through vrbo/homeaway and have written an apartment review, but it was not entered by the owner. It was entered by me as well as all of the other reviews being entered directly by those who had written them.

I've been in the area of the Galata Tower as I went to the Tower. I walked across the bridge to it as I was staying in Sultanahmet. So, I took the street car to the bridge area and then walked across it and over to the Galata Tower. It was a nice area.

I think I was also in the area of the second to the last apartment, but don't totally remember.

It's good to have a two-bedroom apartment as one can store all of the luggage and extra stuff (shopping) in the extra bedroom.

I hope you report back as to which one you have chosen and end up staying in. Happy Travels!
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Old Sep 18th, 2011, 02:02 PM
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As someone who lives in istanbul and rather close to some of the areas, i would only pick the one near the Galatasaray hamam and Lycee. The others near beyoglu will all require more cobblestone street climbing some of which can be rather deserted and eerie at later hours, especially since the Beyoglu mayor illegally confiscated all street seating of cafes and restaurants, forcing them to close and to leave the Beyoglu side streets to drug addicts and other shady characters about two months ago.

the first one, is not at all as close to the historic locations as they state, especially once the daily heavy traffic starts about 8AM until it dwindles by 8PM, although the area itself is worth a half day's walk (hike).
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Old Sep 18th, 2011, 04:43 PM
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otherchelebi: Good information to know as it seems that Istanbul has changed. So, are you saying that apartment #3, I think it was, is the one to go for due to the area? I briefly reread the descriptions. Happy Travels!
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Old Sep 18th, 2011, 10:28 PM
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Guenmai, you are unfortunately right. parts of istanbul are changing. The beyoglu district mayor, belonging to the government party had an interview on TV a few days ago saying that the side streets will no longer be occupied by restaurants and cafes so that they can allow free pedestrian and vehicular traffic and reduced noise for the residents. he did not respond to questions regarding entertainment, tourism and the merchants of the district, but said that the remaining restaurants will be suitable for "conservative families with their children," meaning alcoholol free. When questioned about the increase in the number of dangerous glue sniffing homeless youth in the side streets with all the closed restaurants and cafes, he quickly changed the subject.

He has not been able to touch the Cihangir area yet, due to the high level of local protest there, although it falls within the district.

It seems that, our definition of entertainment areas of Istanbul will be based on the political/religious adherence of the district mayors now. Currently, Sisli, Besiktas and Kadikoy districts are fine. They have always had the best restaurants in any case.
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Old Sep 19th, 2011, 10:10 PM
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How unfortunate. Thanks for the info. Happy Travels!
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Old Sep 20th, 2011, 06:20 AM
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otherchelebi,

Thanks for your input - it's always good to get a locals' opinion.

So, you are suggesting #3 as the best choice, correct?

Can you or others here tell me more about what's in the immediate area of #3? Food, drink, entertainment, etc.? Pedestrianized? How long is tram ride to major tourist sites? Is it walkable? If so, hilly? pleasant?
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Old Sep 20th, 2011, 07:39 AM
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Advantages:

= You will be next to a non-touristy authentic, traditional Hamam for a good Turkish bath experience at a reasonable price.

= It is five minutes lmost straight walk to mid way on the main Street, beyoglu, which is pedestrianized, with the historic tram running in the middle till about 9PM, Life goes on at beyoglu 24 hours a day.
-There will be small markets open 24 days, pharmacies not far away, one of which will be staying open each night, cafes, bars, clubs, restaurants staying open late.
-Churches, consulates, 19th century and early 20th architecture. Lots of shopping, some not so touristy.
-Art galleries, easy walking distance on interesting side streets to antique shops.
- reasonably easy walk to seaside tram to the old city (will need to get back via funicular to Tunel from Karakoy or to Taksim from Kabatas and then walk or take historic tram. Not difficult as it sounds.
- very close to my favorite bookstores which also stock my book, Homer Kitabevi and Arkeopera which are on the parallel street on the other side of Galatasaray High School.
- Close to a fresh produce market area which also has an excellent deli callet Sutte (Balik pazari/Fish Market)
- Close to some excellent concert venues such as IKSV Salon, Babylon, Ghetto.
- Even a branch of the famous traditional Turkish hard candy and Turkish delight shop Haci Bekir is not far away towards Taksim, on the main street.
- Cannot handle the Turkish food? there is a Burger King within minutes of the flats.
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Old Oct 21st, 2011, 01:13 PM
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Otherchelebi, I'm not the OP, but your comments are making me move #3 to the top of my list too. (Though our trip won't be for a year!) I was leaning toward the area around the Galata Tower, but I guess I'll think twice now.
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Old Dec 4th, 2011, 05:01 AM
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We waited too long! #3 (http://www.vrbo.com/265004) is already booked for our dates in April.

We are about to book this alternate:
http://www.vrbo.com/363461

Any thoughts anyone?
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Old Dec 4th, 2011, 06:11 AM
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This is about 600 feet or more of a steep climb below the number 3 you missed, I think, from the picture. i do not like the area much at night although a niece has recently bought a flat there as an investment. (actually stays empty while she and husband work abroad)

For that price, you may be able to get something from Cheya residences ayazpasa apartments. These are very close to where my family has lived for over a hundred years. Our daughter's in-laws stayed at one of the flats Summer 2010 and were pleased.
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