Underground passages leading to ancient cave cellars. Five stone mansions with 42 deluxe rooms and suites. And killer views of Uchisar Castle.
Say hello to Argos in Cappadocia – one of Cappadocia’s best boutique hotels.
Since opening in 2010, it’s snagged honors as one of the top 10 honeymoon hotels worldwide by Gayot. Argos in Cappadocia was also named one of the world’s best new 2010 hotels by Travel + Leisure.
But how “wow” your experience is depends a lot on which room you bunk down in. They range from standard rooms to “splendid suites” with private cave pools.
When we stayed in June, 2012, Argos in Cappadocia was undergoing some construction to build more rooms. Our room overlooked the construction, so unfortunately we had to keep our curtains closed and needed earplugs.
The good news is that the enhancement project is only at one end of the property – so ask for a room away from any construction, and you’ll be a happy guest. Because inside, all rooms are super stylish, with exposed stone walls, comfy king beds, antique rugs and fireplaces (it gets chilly in winter).
Argos clings to the sides of the fairy tale village of Uchisar, the highest point in Cappadocia.
Dine outside on the terrace of its Seki restaurant for jaw-dropping views of the rock citadel of Uchisar Castle and Pigeon Valley – maybe slow-cooked lamb shoulder with peach confit?
And try the traditional quince dessert with clotted cream, and get this, mince. Yes, mince meat. It may not sound appealing, but it’s actually very delicious. Quince is a tart fruit, and the tiny bits of ground meat add a crumbly texture to the flavors. It tastes a little like apple crumble.
Underground tunnels and caves
Argos was built on the site of an ancient monastery. During its restoration, a 3½ mile tunnel and subterranean warren of caves and passages were discovered. The hotel now houses its private wine cellars down there.
Ask the concierge for a tour – it’s well worth it to get a feel of what Cappadocia’s underground cities were like. (Cappadocia has some 150 to 200 underground cave cities, which sheltered early Christians seeking refuge from persecution.)
Just make sure you save time to simply relax in one of Argos’ flower-filled gardens, soaking in those magnificent views.
Another hotel we stayed at in Cappadocia is Esbelli Evi, a delightful boutique cave hotel (where the suites come with kitchens).