Istanbul holiday accommodation, Turkey



Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Istanbul holiday accommodation, Turkey


Our apartment project is a rare example for Istanbul: a small business in which environmental issues have been consciously addressed.

During our renovations we preserve all the original building features and materials that we possibly can. Where new products are needed eg bathrooms and kitchens, we source them locally and use items designed and made in Turkey. All new wood eg for kitchen worktops, restored windows and doorways, is local. Our furnishings are often antique, mixed with modern pieces which are as ethically sourced as possible.

Guests are encouraged to use public transport during their stay - tram, metro and ferry links are all within easy walking distance and very convenient to all parts of the city - and we provide a travelcard on each keyring for this purpose. Guests are respectfully reminded to be careful with their energy use in the apartments, where we do all we can to maximise efficiency.

For each confirmed booking we arrange for a tree to be planted in Turkey, to offset part of the carbon dioxide emission from the resulting flight. This is done through TEMA (the Turkish foundation for combating soil erosion, for reforestation and the protection of natural habitats). We also encourage our visitors to offset any additional emission via the TEMA web site.


During the apartment renovations we employ local crafts people who show sensitivity to the restoration skills needed for these unique buildings. In this way we feel we contribute to the restoration skills pool in the location and encourage appreciation of historical architecture and original features. Central Istanbul has many beautiful old buildings that are neglected and on the verge of dereliction. We hope to show, in a small way, how a sense of history in a building and original architectural features can be assets in tourism.

We use local maintenance and cleaning services, through which we hope to spread our awareness.

The apartments are self-catering, so our guests use the many neighbourhood shops, restaurants and services for their daily needs. We dare to hope that this encourages cross-cultural understanding as well as providing financial support for the local businesses. We also encourage guests to use the fish and vegetables markets in the surrounding area, where produce is local and seasonal. The family-run restaurants nearby also use this produce.

The apartments are uniquely situated among mosques, churches, synagogues, a Mevlevi whirling dervish hall and other sites of religious significance. We encourage guests to sense the history of religious tolerance and to experience something of it themselves during their stay.

We supply a selection of guide and reference books for context.

Reviews of Istanbul holiday accommodation, Turkey

You can trust Responsible Travel reviews because, unlike many other schemes, reviews can ONLY be written by people who we have verified have been on the holidays.

I am reborn! Simply the best holiday I have ever been on
Some great stories to tell the grandchildren. Would recommend to a friend
Very enjoyable
It was OK
A bit disappointing really

Reviewed on 23 Apr 2012 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Just being in Istanbul.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Pack good walking shoes. Don't just stick to the main tourist areas, explore the back streets and pick up some delicious treats and have a Raki.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

The owners of the apartment made a point of reminding guests to turn off lights, heating etc when leaving for the day.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Brilliant holiday and very personable local contact.

Reviewed on 20 Oct 2009 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Istanbul was a great place to stay, with so much to do. The accommodation was in a brilliant location to enjoy both the historic sights and going out. It has been beautifully restored and was perfect for a couple.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

If you want to avoid boring, chain hotels and want a great appartment in an ideal location this will suit you.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

The family who own the apartment had used local people for the restoration and it seemed like they had a good relationship with the locals.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Brilliant! Highly recommended.

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