Turkish Delight

By Sandra Ramani / November 6, 2011

Set in the heart of Turkey’s central Anatolia region, Cappadocia is like something out of a fairy tale—or maybe “Star Wars.” The area is famous for the hundreds of natural caves and mushroom-like towers — dubbed “fairy chimneys” that dot the stark landscape, many of which once acted as housing for ancient settlers. These days, visitors can wander some of the tower-homes and mosaic-filled cave chapels in open- air museums—and, if they’re lucky, actually stay in one of the historic hideaways.

Opened in 2002, after more than four years of restoration, The Museum Hotel in the town of Uchisar is a luxurious glimpse into times past. Each of the 30 rooms and suites is set in the renovated remains of a cave network, while above ground lay lovely flower-filled courtyards, lounge areas and a pool. Thanks to the discerning eye of owner Omer Tosun, a top antique carpet dealer and one of the visionaries of Cappadocia tourism, the décor is replete with antique furnishings and museum-grade artifacts. Rooms have surprising design touches—a fountain in one, a stone fireplace in another—along with panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.

Nature plays a key role in the hotel’s spa offerings, too. Treatments can be enjoyed in the rooms or on the beautiful Spa Terrace, a tucked-away spot that’s open on three sides to the warm desert breeze and decorated with soft rugs and billowing white curtains. On a large side table sit dozens of jars of fresh herb-infused oils featuring ingredients like sweet bay, juniper, daisy, sage, rose and thyme of Cappadocia. Signature massages incorporate a customized blend of the herbs based on the client’s needs, while the facials also make use of all-natural skin care products.

Dedicated to responsible tourism, the owners have undertaken several projects to help sustain the region, from helping to restore historic houses and creating an organic garden to supporting local schools.

One upcoming project is the safe development of the area’s natural hot springs, which the hotel hopes to use both for an eco-friendly heating system and a new Thermal Wellness section, meaning there soon will be even more spa action at this dreamy spot. museum-hotel.com

Sandra Ramani

Sandra Ramani

Senior Contributing Editor at Organic Spa Magazine
In addition to serving as OSM’s Senior Contributing Editor, writer/editor Sandra Ramani covers travel, wellness, and lifestyle topics for such publications as Travel + Leisure, Robb Report, Premier Traveler, AFAR, Bridal Guide, Elite Traveler, and Every Day with Rachael Ray. She is also the author of “Day Trips from Dallas / Fort Worth,” now in its second edition. Recent assignments have found her sleeping in the Sahara, hopping helicopters in New Zealand, and making this new friend in Bali.
Sandra Ramani

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