This urban oasis in the middle of Galata, the historic Genoese neighborhood of Istanbul, has been created by an exemplary renovation project, converting a 19th-century French school to a 17-room small luxury hotel. Many of the rooms come with contemporary design elements and French balconies overlooking a charming courtyard, while the Galata suites at the top level offer private terrace views of Galata Tower. The hotel also has a very pleasant in-house Italian restaurant and pizzeria called Il Cortile, where you could have Italian cocktails and plates in a peaceful courtyard away from the crowds.
Collège des Frères St. Pierre was founded by Frères des Ecoles Chrétiennes (FEC) back in 1842, as part of the St. Pierre Church and Monastry. The school stayed active until 1935, teaching the Christian, Jewish, and Muslim students predominantly in French. The architecture of the monastery, as well as the school, belongs to the Italian architects Gaspare and Guisseppe Fossati, who also built important monumental buildings in the Pera district of Istanbul like the Naum Theater, as well as the Russian and Dutch Embassies.
Galata neighborhood was surrounded by 13th-century city walls up until the 1860s when they were sadly demolished to open new roads for the Beyoğlu district. You can still see a rare surviving part of these walls inside the courtyard of the hotel, where Il Cortile Restaurant welcomes guests today.
Go up the Galata Tower to get a 360 glimpse of the city, or better, sip your sundowner on one of the terraces surrounding the tower. Galata Mevlevi House is also one of the few places where you could watch an authentic Sufi ritual in a 15th-century lodge. Galata is also famous for its small designer boutiques, many of which you would find along Serdar-ı Ekrem Street.
You can still see a rare surviving part of these walls inside the courtyard of the hotel, where Il Cortile Restaurant welcomes guests today.