Pera Palas Hotel in Galata district is one of the oldest and the most famous hotels of Istanbul. The hotel was built in 1892 for the specific purpose of hosting passengers arriving on the Orient Express train. Agatha Christie was one of its visitors where she wrote Murder on the Orient Express.
Today, the "Agatha Christie Room", number 411, is now preserved in her honor.
Another room, number 101, is notable too as it housed Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, founder of the Republic, while he prepared for the Turkish War of Independence. "Atatürk's Suite" is a small museum now, displaying his personal objects of interest like ebony chairs, exotic oriental carpets and a rare black silk prayer rug, all gifts from foreign heads-of-state to the Turkish leader.
The fascinating lobbies and halls of the hotel are decorated with 19th century furniture. Its "Orient Bar" and charming dining rooms are considered some of the most atmospheric in Turkey. One can well imagine the spies Mata Hari and Kim Philby lounging seductively on a comfy sofa in the bar or Ernest Hemingway outlining his next novel in the dining room over Chicken Döner and Bloody Mary's with his lady of the moment.
» Hagia Sophia (Aya Sofya)
» Topkapi Palace (Topkapı Sarayı)
» Sultanahmet Mosque (Sultanahmet Camii, The Blue Mosque)
» Basilica Cistern (Yerebatan Sarnici)
» Gran Bazaar (Kapalı Çarşı)
» Egyptian Bazaar (Mısır Çarşısı, also known as Spice Bazaar)
» Süleymaniye Mosque (Süleymaniye Camii)
» Chora Church (Kariye Müzesi)