Istanbul Turkish hammam with model

All You Need to Know about Turkish Hammams


Uncover the benefits of the time-honoured hammam experience, from its historic traditions to restorative foaming massages.

What’s the hammam at Mandarin Oriental Bosphorus, Istanbul like?

Expectations for the hammam-centred spa at Mandarin Oriental Bosphorus, Istanbul were always going to be high. When the hotel opened in the Kuruçeşme neighbourhood in 2021, its crown jewel was Istanbul’s first true 3,000 sqm ‘destination spa’, incorporating three luxury contemporary Turkish hammam that didn’t disappoint. Guests step into a serene white Turkish marble clad space that reveals itself on closer inspection to be subtly textured with design details such as engraved geometric Ottoman patterns and a dramatically lit decagon-shaped ceiling dome to observe as you lounge in the humidity. The hammams are divided into the customary private areas at different set temperatures that take guests through each step of the traditional Turkish bath experience.

What are the benefits of hammam treatments?

Stimulating circulation, exfoliating the skin, encouraging the elimination of toxins from the body and benefit to the metabolic system are just some of the purported benefits of time spent in a hammam, which typically combines relaxing in steamy temperatures with a thorough body scrub by a professional that is followed by having your skin oiled to soft perfection, since the old Ottoman days.

What is the difference between visiting a hammam and a sauna?

Both are steam-based treatments available at Mandarin Oriental Bosphorus and deliver a wellbeing boost in the form of well-loved cultural ritual that is long-established: hammams date from at least the 7th century in the Islamic world, while the Scandinavian sauna originated in Finland as early as 7000 BC. But there are some key differences. Hammams deliver higher humidity and lower temperatures than the dry-heat of a sauna, for a longer-lasting and arguably more luxuriant purifying experience With the assistance of hammam experts, hammam is an experience which not only purifies, but also pampers you. As you’d expect, there are distinct design traditions in each culture, too, with hammams often taking the form of ornate, high dome-ceiled marble spaces with water wells, and saunas are clad in natural wood.

What sort of body treatments can I try at the hammam at Mandarin Oriental Bosphorus, Istanbul?

The core menu of the hammam at Mandarin Oriental Bosphorus, Istanbul offers three different key treatments. A simple but powerfully effective 30-minute invigorating body scrub; the same scrub combined with a foam massage using traditional white soap and aromatherapy oils at 45 minutes, or a one-hour treatment that also allows time for a hydrating body mask. Welcoming bride-to-be’s who are filled with excitement and joy, the bridal hammam guarantees not only a clarifying session for the bride and her girlfriends, but also a delicate preparation of their most awaited day. Offered alongside these is The Spa’s wider menu of skin, mind and body treats, from couples’ spa packages – there are also separate men’s and women’s facilities – to all manner of skincare including Dr. Barbara Sturm and Biologique Recherche facials, classic hot stone massages and very much more.

The Spa at Mandarin Oriental Bosphorus offers a variety of both local and international brands that are of the highest quality, providing an exclusive shopping experience. The Spa Shop encompasses numerous brands ranging from swimwear to skincare cosmetics and loungewear to aromatherapy and precious souvenirs. Whether you’ve had a purifying hammam session or a refreshing swim at the indoor pool, you’ll love the products at The Shop as the cherry on top of your spa journey.