This functional yet imposing building is one of many that cluster close to Taksim Square. However, it stands a cut above the rest in term of class and history. The Divan hotel opened its doors in 1956, filling the gap in Istanbul's hospitality industry that needed a hotel which met international standards. It has remained a pillar of the Turkish hotel industry and has expanded to include two other hotels in the city and many more across the country. It has a decadent feel, with lavish décor and plush furnishings. The rooms are spacious and smartly decked out in subtle tones. Ask for a room on a higher level if you want a view, and to distance yourself from the bustle outside.

There are several decent dining options that offer a combination of traditional Turkish and and mixed international food, along with a sushi bar. Its patisserie is a particular favorite with wealthy locals who visit to buy Turkish delight, chocolate covered chestnuts, and other sweet treats. Standard rooms feature all modern conveniences, such as a LCD television, iPod docks, safes, and mini bars. There are also deluxe rooms and junior and presidential suites in case you're inclined to take things up a notch. Interestingly, the hotel attracted attention during the Gezi Park protests of 2013, when it opened its doors to the injured protesters to serve as a makeshift hospital, later becoming a target for police using tear gas to disperse protestors.