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ERDOBA HOTEL, MARDİN

The first of the bouique hotels to hit Mardin, the Erdoba has rapidly grown into a set of buildings of very varying character and interest. Because of this you need to make quite sure that you are actually going to be put in one of the old characterful rooms before booking if that is what you want. Staying at a quiet time I was very happy with my spacious room with fine carved features. However, a friend who once had to share a dull room with a transparent bathroom cubicle with her son was very disappointed.

The best rooms, then, showcase the fine carved features that have made Mardin houses so famous. The transparent bathroom cubicles are an attempt not to alter those rooms to provide modern comforts but obviously they don't provide absolute privacy. 

Most of the Erdoba's rooms would be hard for the mobility-impaired to access because of the many steps - in the main building there are even steps up to the reception. On the other hand the lofty terrace offers a fine view over the Mesopotamian Plain over breakfast.

In my room in the Ottoman Konağı the main amenities - air-con, TV and wifi - all worked perfectly although the hot and cold taps were reversed from what many people would regard as their normal positions. The fridge came with a few cans of drink and bottles of water but no alcohol. 

When I visited the breakfast was served rather than open buffet but it's possible that this changes at busier times. Considering the calibre of hotel I didn't think it was particularly well served. 

The sitting room on the ground floor is truly magnificent and if you can get it yourself and recline on the floor cushions with a book you'll probably love it. All too often, though, it's taken over by men watching football on the TV or by staff members.

The main building is right on Birinci Cadde, old Mardin's main drag. It's close to the tea gardens and the Sabancı Museum, a short walk away from the main square. Buses plying the main road drop people off right by the front door. 

Thumbs up: Bags of character in main buildings, great location

Thumbs down: Some rooms far less interesting, lots of steps

Tel: 0482-212 7677

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