Historical romance positively drips from every corner of Pera Palace and you can practically see Agatha Christie, Ernest Hemingway, Alfred Hitchcock, King Edward VIII, and Greta Garbo lounging about with their scotch. Built in 1892 to host Orient Express passengers, the Pera Palace today is considered to be a museum-hotel. And a very beautiful one at that: antique furniture, mother-of-pearl, cast-iron, wood panelling, white marble, grand staircases, hardwood, glass domes, red velvet, and mirrors galore. Opulence from a by-gone era. There is even Europe’s oldest working elevator as well as an original painted sedan chair that was used to transport passengers from the Orient Express to the hotel.
Pera Palace is designated a museum-hotel because Room 101 has been converted into the Ataturk Museum – this was his room whenever he stayed at the hotel. It is full of his personal belongings and even if you know nothing about him, you can tell he was a politically-minded man who enjoyed his comforts. Room 101 consists of a little entryway, the main sitting room, a bedroom, and a bathroom. All rooms have touches of Ataturk – clothes, a tapestry, documents, photos, and mementos.