Your next trip to Istanbul just got a whole lot sweeter thanks to the Shangri-La Istanbul, Bosphorus.

By Andrea Romano
September 26, 2020

Guests at this luxury hotel in Turkey can get a treat that they’re sure to go nuts for.

Shangri-La Istanbul, Bosphorus in Istanbul, Turkey is breaking new ground by offering guests the world’s first Baklava Butler. While there are some hotels around the world who offer a robotic snack or wine butler, this new offering is a true treat served with a side of history.

Baklava, although it is also a well-known dessert in Greece, is historically linked back to the Ottoman Empire in Turkey, where it was served to Turkish royalty. Today, many people around the world enjoy the sweet, nutty, flaky dessert.

But at this hotel, you’re getting so much more than just the delicious treat. Guests who arrive at the Shangri-La will receive an ornate-looking key that they can redeem to the staff at either the Lobby Lounge or the IST TOO restaurant in the hotel. When their dessert is served, it will be presented to them by the Baklava Butler dressed in a traditional Turkish outfit.

Shangri-La's Baklava Butler preparing baklava
Credit: Courtesy of SHANGRI-LA

The baklava at the Shangri-La is made to order by a specialty shop in Gaziantep, rumored to be the birthplace of baklava and Turkey’s Pistachio Capital. The shop only uses a simple blend of honey, phyllo pastry, butter, and crushed Antep pistachios to make the dessert, unlike versions in other places of the world that include cinnamon or walnuts. In a way, you’re getting baklava as it was truly intended.

In addition, this pastry is served with Maraş ice cream, a traditional Turkish ice cream that is made of clotted cream. Are you packing your bag for a Turkish getaway yet?

Guests can also take home or send a gift of the decadent dessert by purchasing individual boxes at the hotel for 250 Turkish lira (about $33 USD) per box.

Since the coronavirus pandemic is still ongoing around the world, the Shangri-La Istanbul is also committed to new safety and health protocols laid out by the World Health Organization. The hotel has increased its frequency and attention to deep cleaning all high-touch surfaces and areas used by guests, using medical grade sanitizers and disinfectants, increased cleaning frequency of air filters and air-conditioner systems, and social distancing.

For more information or to plan a stay, visit the Shangri-La Bosphorus, Istanbul website.