Discovering Dalyan - A Luxury Hotel
As Dalyan has fast adapted to its growing tourist culture over the past decade or so, hotels, villas and apartments have popped up all over town faster than you can say "holiday". There are so many options for accommodation in Dalyan, from the basic and budget Dalyan Camping Ground to the magnificent mountain top, seven bedroom villas with a view to die for. In the case of hotels, there is something to satisfy everybody's requirements and budget. Most of the hotels in Dalyan fall into the mid-price range, where you can secure a double room for anything between £20 and £40 a night. For the ultimate luxury package, your pickings are few.
The requirements for hotel star ratings differ in every country and certainly in the UK, standards are extremely high. A hotel would need several restaurants, a suite the size of a large apartment, a fully kitted out fitness suite and spa, valet services, butler and concierge services, room service and afternoon tea, alongside a business centre. Honestly, Dalyan is just not the right destination for this kind of hotel. A resort of this kind would seem beyond ridiculous in fact. However, I believe that the Dalyan Resort Hotel and Spa is as close as you can get to five star luxury in this town.
Visit the Dalyan Resort through our short film!
Our Short Film About the Dalyan Resort Hotel
The Dalyan Resort Hotel and Spa is a spacious and tranquil escape from the lively town centre, located on the banks of the Dalyan River, about a 20 minute walk from Mosque Square. The immediate area of the hotel is very quiet, with just a few residential houses and pensions and the hotel is set on the very edge of this estate, with its own private road. The only people who overlook this hotel are those who happen to sneak a glance from one of the boats that ferry tourists down to the beach. The most noise you will hear is that of the boats' chugging engines.
From the moment your enter the immaculate and stylish reception and then step into the hotel grounds, you are transported into a world of calm and wonder. You are suddenly entered into a place that encapsulates all of the stunning natural beauty that Dalyan has to offer. The Dalyan Resort Hotel and Spa may well have some of the best views in town and you can feel the energy of the river as it flows around the grounds.
Stunning Riverside Energy
The hotel was designed by its owner, Yücel Okutur, who was a very successful architect in Istanbul before he and his wife Fulya, manager of the hotel, fell in love with and relocated to Dalyan. Ten years ago, the Dalyan Resort Hotel was built, using local materials and labour and more recently, a new section was added to the complex. Today, the hotel is split into two sections.
Intricate Balconies and Easy Pool Access
To the left as you enter, you are greeted with stunning rows of rooms, with intricate iron balconies surrounding an extremely inviting pool.
Spacious Pool Side
To the right you find something similar, with rooms that look like they could be homes, overlooking the restaurant and bar area.
Beyond these main areas are the stunning gardens. It is the spacious grounds which really sell this hotel for the beautiful accommodation that it is.
Yücel and Fulya, both plant and wildlife lovers, have done an incredible job of creating an absolute wonderland, with corners of respite everywhere. If you want to escape, isolation is easy to find, with hidden hanging chairs that swing in the breeze to shaded riverside sun loungers that overlook the sparkling waters.
Stunning Corners of Tranquility
Every little nook and cranny feels like an enchanted garden, with its perfect roses, whistling branches and colourful cascades of petals. Better still, residents have one of the best views of the infamous Dalyan rock tombs that the town has to offer.
Incredible Views of the Lycian Rock Tombs
Like its gardens, the hotel itself is immaculate. I stayed at the hotel at the end of March, before it was even open and so I saw the work that goes into preparing the hotel for the season. Yücel and Fulya think of everything. The pools are cleaned to perfection, the tiled ground is pressure-washed, the palm trees are clipped and everything is cleaned to within an inch of its life! It is also the time where new staff are trained and Fulya has her finger on the button here.
Everything Ready for a New Season
The staff at the Dalyan Resort Hotel and Spa are some of the most professional and well mannered that I have ever come across. They are there to serve you and to make sure that you have the most comfortable and relaxing time possible. They are impeccably trained and while their spoken English isn't great, their understanding is; their manners and demeanours are perfect.
Graduates of the Dalyan School of Tourism
One of the things that I love the most about the Dalyan Resort Hotel is that Fulya as manager has a vested interest in tourism in the community. The hotel actively employs graduates from Muğla University and the local School of Tourism. I recently wrote an article about how important tourism is to life in Dalyan and that a large majority of children in the area train in tourism from as young as twelve. It is fantastic to see a hotel actively supporting local education and employing local youths.
Additionally, Yücel is one of the town's keenest supporters of the local environment and supports sustainable tourism in the area through his presidency of local hotelier's association DOKTOB. He is keen to keep the town as traditional as possible, one of the great selling points of Dalyan. His love of nature is evident all over the hotel, but also in the hotel's kitchen, with organic and delicious local produce, mostly grown on the hotel's own grounds just across the river.
Yücel's Organic Fruit Farm
He is also the initiator and a strong supporter of the current plans to have all boats in Dalyan converted to electric power from the current oil and petrol engines which pollute the waters and endanger the local wildlife, including the area's much loved turtles. In fact, the resort's own boat was the first to be converted.
Fulya and Yücel Okutur
Yücel took me to his organic farm to see the work that they do. I tried the deliciously sour-sweet grapefruits and tantalisingly salivating oranges straight off the branches of the trees and they were incredible. But you don't have to visit the plantation itself to benefit from the fruits of his labour. With every meal you have at the Dalyan Resort Hotel and Spa, you will be eating produce grown at the hotel's fields, from the juicy olives at breakfast to the vegetables served at dinner and the beautiful freshly squeezed pomegranate juice served all day long.
Beautifully Decorated Rooms
The hotel has one hundred rooms in total, sold on a half board basis; a combination of standard rooms, family rooms and suites, many with disabled access. All rooms have air conditioning, a safety deposit box, mini bar, satellite television, a terrace and luxury bathroom with amenities. The suites have a separate lounge area and back and front terraces to enjoy the views from, many overlook the stunning river. The rooms are tastefully decorated, with class and style, nothing is left unthought of. If you happen to be travelling on business, the hotel also has a beautiful conservatory overlooking the river, which can be used as meeting rooms.
Business Rooms Within the Resort's Stunning Gardens
The pool areas are delightful; very spacious and with plenty of sun loungers. The pools are also surrounded by colourful flowers and foliage and overlooked by towering palm trees, modestly shaded from the view of the river and its boats.
Beautiful Pool Surroundings
The spa is also a welcome addition to the hotel, offering excellent massages from a trained therapist in a luxury setting. One last perk at the Dalyan Resort is that you can hail a boat from the edge of the gardens any time you want to spend a few hours at the famous Iztuzu Beach.
Boats to the Beach and Town from your Doorstep
The Dalyan Resort Hotel may not be for everyone. As a half board hotel, you may not find the need to venture into town for dinner, which for some would be a shame. While the food at the hotel is fabulous, some like a change of scene and a bit of variety. Some visitors to Dalyan also enjoy the wit and the banter that many of the hotel owners and staff seem willing to give out to their customers. While the Dalyan Resort is more than welcoming, they are very firmly of the mind that staff should not be partying with the residents.
A High Class and Luxury Hotel Experience
These are by no mean criticisms, but it is only fair to point out that the Dalyan Resort Hotel and Spa offers a different kind of Dalyan experience. If it is parties and late nights on the town that you are after, Dalyan Resort is probably not the right place for you. If peace and tranquility, relaxation and therapy is, then it is the perfect hotel. I can assure you that the decision to stay at the beautiful Dalyan Resort Hotel and Spa will provide you with accommodation and service that is second to none. Here you will find a high class and luxury hotel experience in paradise.
Disclosure: While this is an unbiased article about the Dalyan Resort Hotel and all views are my own, I worked closely with hotel owner Yücel Okutur and DOKTOB and received a complementary stay at the hotel under the hospitality of Yücel and Fulya who were a fantastic support of the Dalyan Exposé.