This is the seventh of eleven posts on Istanbul. Check out our other posts here:
- Introduction to Istanbul
- 4 Nights at the Magnificent Park Hyatt Istanbul
- Hagia Sophia: Church, Mosque, and Now Museum
- Cheap Eats in Istanbul!
- Istanbul’s Magnificent Mosques
- Turkish Food is Quite a Delight!
- Suleymaniye Hamami: A Mixed Gender Turkish Bath
- Shopping at the Grand Bazaar and Spice Bazaar in Istanbul
- Istanbul’s Other Sights: The Topkapi Palace & Basilica Cistern
- Crossing the Bosphorous Strait: A Day Trip from Europe to Asia
- Lounge Deathmatch: Turkish Airlines vs. Cathay Pacific
Since Mr. Selfish and I had a lovely hammam experience in Morocco, we figured we would try a Turkish bath while in Istanbul. There are tons of hammams all over Istanbul but we opted for a mixed gender hammam near the Süleymaniye Mosque. The hammam was called Suleymaniye Hamami, and you can make a reservation online.
The hammam was built in 1557, and it was beautiful inside. Unfortunately, since it is a bath, you are not allowed to take photos of the actual bath areas, which are quite ornate. However, below are some photos of the area before the bath.
Plus, I managed to take some photos of the booklet explaining the process for the hammam.
The entire process takes about an hour and costs 35 euros.
1. You change into hammam appropriate attire. You can either use the clothes they have there, or you can bring your own bathing suit. Mr. Selfish and I opted to bring our own bathing suits.
The left photo is the clothes they have on premises for the bath. The right photo is the towels that you wear after you dry off.
2. You go into the hot room where you can lay on a large marble slab and sweat it out. When we were in the hammam, there were three other people having a bath as well. All five of us easily fit on the marble slab with ample extra room. While on the marble, I laid on a towel, but Mr. Selfish was baller and laid down directly on the hot marble.
3. Burly Turkish men come and get you. They bring you into a separate wash area where they wash and scrub you down with very good smelling soap. Then, they lay you down on a marble table and give you a bubble bath massage. I must admit that it was pretty awesome having a massage with tons of bubbles. It’s not the most delicate process but I definitely felt exfoliated and then very relaxed.
This is the tip box for the Turkish masseuses. We definitely tipped them well!
4. You change out of those wet clothes and into clean warm towels. You then sit in a cool down area and can enjoy drinks, such as tea and juice.
I highly recommend the Suleymaniye Hamami. Although it cost 70 euros for the both of us, I enjoyed it tremendously. There’s nothing like a burly Turkish man giving you a bubble bath massage in such a beautiful setting.