Upon my arrival in Turkey, I spent five days at The Bodrum EDITION, a luxury resort on the Mediterranean coast.
The property had been highly recommended to me by my dearest Miles & Points friends. In the spirit of “earn and burn”, I was very keen to check it out at good value. In fact, it was the impetus and centrepiece for my month-long Eurasia trip.
Ricky, always a man of good taste, also had The Bodrum EDITION on his radar, and booked a couple of nights overlapping my stay to join me.
In This Post
- Resort Layout
- Private Pool Suite
- Loft Suite with Sea View
- Pool & Beach
- Other Facilities
The Bodrum EDITION – Booking
I booked my stay at The Bodrum EDITION in the dying days of Marriott Bonvoy’s award chart. This hotel was on their hit list of this year’s most significant devaluations, going up in price by 30,000 points per night.
Hunting for a sweet spot of off-season prices with shoulder season weather, I managed to snag a block of five nights in May each priced at 50,000 points – off-peak rates at the old Category 7 tier.
In total, I paid 200,000 points for five nights using Marriott Bonvoy’s “Stay 5, Pay 4” benefit for award bookings.
For a seasonal property that can retail for $1,000 (CAD) per night at times of the year when demand is low, that’s phenomenal value at 2.5 cents per Bonvoy point. More importantly, using points empowered me to enjoy an aspirational experience that I wasn’t prepared to pay cash for.
Similar to Josh, I had decided to lock in a stay at The Bodrum EDITION using Bonvoy points just before the price was about to increase as of March 2022.
I redeemed 50,000 points per night for a two-night stay, making a few separate bookings throughout the calendar in case my plans would evolve.
Later, when I found a favourable transatlantic business class fare on Delta and Virgin Atlantic, I decided to keep my booking in May 2022 and join Josh for a mini-team retreat out here in Turkey’s southwestern coast.
The Bodrum EDITION – Location
The Bodrum EDITION is on a peninsula on Turkey’s Mediterranean coast jutting into the Aegean Sea.
The hotel is on the north side of the peninsula, facing north in the centre of a sheltered bay within a bay. It’s a 5–10-minute taxi (or 30–40-minute walk) to the nearby town of Yalikavak, or 30–45 minutes to the larger city of Bodrum across the peninsula.
The region features typical Aegean topography, with rolling hills, intricate coastlines, and charming homes exuding tan and olive tones to match the landscape.
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The city of Bodrum, a short ferry ride from the Greek island of Kos, was historically known as Halicarnassus. There are many Greek ruins in the area, including the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world.
Layered on top of the ancient Greek history and familiar Mediterranean vistas, you’ll find people living coastal lifestyles with a Turkish flavour, encompassing cuisine, demeanour, and culture.
To get to the hotel, I hailed a taxi at the airport. The ride is 45 minutes, or longer with traffic, and cost around 400 lira.
The Bodrum EDITION – Check-in
The first thing you’ll notice when you arrive at The Bodrum EDITION is the exquisite level of service. This was a theme that persisted in every facet of my stay and absolutely set the property apart.
Arriving late in the evening, I was greeted by no fewer than five staff: one to help unload my bag from the taxi, the woman working at the front desk, the assistant front office manager, a runner to bring odds and ends to my suite, and the “lifestyle host” serving a guest relations role.
By the time check-in was complete, I was on a first-name basis with many of them, and the more senior staff provided me with their business cards and direct lines in case I needed anything to improve my stay.
As a Titanium Elite welcome gift, I was offered a choice of two ice creams, one coffee-based, the other raki-based (Turkish grappa). I went with the coffee flavour, embracing the rich Turkish coffee tradition.
I was quite charmed by the wooden key cards I was given.
I had requested a suite upgrade via chat days, and again hours, before my arrival. I was thrilled to check the Marriott Bonvoy app midday on my check-in day to see that I had been assigned a Private Pool Suite. I was a bit delayed getting in, so I was sure to keep the hotel informed of my timing so I wouldn’t lose my room.
After a long travel day, my first impressions of the soft product were so good, I barely noticed the hard product. Circling back by day, the lobby space was impressive in its own right.
The driveway sits just off the main road as it winds along the coastal cliff.
Inside, there’s a graceful curtained doorway leading to the lobby.
The sleek design continues with bright but minimalist Mediterranean tones and foliage featured throughout – a vibe which would set the tone for other parts of the property. The space is filled with light throughout the day, with expansive shaded skylights.
The front desk is tucked away to the right side.
To the left, there’s a bar which seemed to get very little use – you’d be hard-pressed to find an excuse to spend time in the lobby when the rest of the facility is so compelling.
In between, there’s a comfortable sitting area with furniture similar to what I would find in my suite. I was invited to wait here whenever I ordered a taxi to town or the airport.
The Bodrum EDITION – Resort Layout
Like many hotels and vacation rental complexes along the coast, The Bodrum EDITION is built into a steep hill descending into the sea.
Exiting the lobby, you’ll find yourself perched atop a cliff overlooking the Mediterranean. There’s a bit more outdoor seating, and ornamental clay pots scattered throughout the yard.
Down towards the beach, there are a number of buildings on different terraces, housing the guest rooms. Basic rooms are concentrated towards the top of the cliff, with suites further down closer to the resort’s amenities. As best I could tell, every room has a stunning ocean view.
Through the centre of the property, there’s a corridor with a staircase between each level. You can also call a buggy at any time, and the staff can shuttle you up or down the driveways flanking the sprawling campus.
There’s also a separate day-use entrance for guests who aren’t staying at the hotel.
From here, there’s an elevator down through the core of the facilities, with direct access to the spa, restaurants, pool, and beach. Many of these connected facilities like the restaurant kitchens and spa are buried in the cliff, maximizing the views for the guest experience.
The property warrants a comprehensive orientation when you arrive. The whimsical maze of indoor and outdoor corridors weaving through the vertical landscape left me wondering if I’d left any facilities undiscovered.
The Bodrum EDITION – Private Pool Suite
Emine, the lifestyle host, led me down the central corridor to my suite. To complete the check-in process, she gave me a full tour of my suite.
I was in Suite 801, but you wouldn’t know it had a room number. When you’re staying in a suite at The Bodrum EDITION, you just kind of figure out “where” to go.
The Private Pool Suites are on the lowest level of their respective buildings. Additional, less impressive suites (such as the Loft Suite that Ricky received) are above, accessed from separate entrances on the back side up the hill.
The Private Pool Suite, however, has its own private entrance from the sea-facing front side, through a garden gate unlocked by my key card.
Entering the suite, it was immediately apparent that the space was outfitted like a full-fledged luxury apartment.
To the left of the entrance, at the back of the suite, there’s a dining table, with varied comfortable seating including benches and chairs for a crowd.
I received a COVID-19 sanitary kit in a slick wooden box, along with my welcome note and a resort map.
To the left of the dining area, there’s a full kitchen with an induction stove, a wine cooler, and a large fridge adorned with a COVID-19 sanitary sealing sticker.
In the kitchen, there’s a coffee and tea station, and a mini-bar for purchase.
To the right of the dining area, you’ll find the powder room. It’s a full bathroom with a shower, and a design that would exceed that of the ensuite at many hotels.
Back to the main entrance, to the right, at the front of the suite, is the living room. There’s an expansive L-shaped sofa with views of the TV and the terrace, plus a few chairs to round out the seating.
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The high-ceilinged space features a minimalist aesthetic with marble, cream, and light wood tones, without skimping on amenities or subtle design notes. Throughout the dining and living rooms, there are various accoutrements, including an empty ornamental fruit bowl, a dominoes set, some coffee table books, and old-school Mediterranean lifestyle photographs.
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Continuing past the living room, the bedroom and ensuite bathroom are around the corner. The bedroom is at the front, with the ensuite at the back.
In the centre of the room, there’s a king bed sitting low to the floor. The sleek wooden nightstands are built into the wall and have reading lights, electrical outlets, and panels for controlling the lighting and curtains.
Across from the bed, there’s another TV, above a desk with a comprehensive power bank that will save you from rummaging for your plug adapters.
In the corner by the terrace, there’s a simple fabric armchair with an ottoman and a wooden side table.
The master ensuite extends to the back of the building, with large mirrors throughout. On the right, there’s a long counter with two sinks, loaded with amenities, including plentiful towels and complimentary EDITION-branded water.
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To the left, there’s an alcove with two closets. Bathrobes and flip-flops can be used during your stay and purchased to keep, while the EDITION “O” bag is free to take, and quite useful as I toted things to and from the beach and pool.
Towards the back, there’s a soaker tub, accented by a small succulent plant.
Beside the tub, there’s a toilet with a frosted glass privacy door.
Across, there’s a rain shower, featuring signature EDITION toiletries by Le Labo.
Beside the shower, there’s another mysterious space. After fiddling with the touch-screen control panel outside, I realized it was a steam room.
Once I got it working, I wasted no time putting my private steam room to good use. It was definitely an unexpected highlight of my suite and the property as a whole, accentuating the detoxifying ambiance of the seaside resort.
Oh, and let’s not forget the terrace.
You can’t possibly miss the pool as you enter the unit, but I arrived at night, so I got the grand reveal by daylight from inside my suite, which I’d say was more exciting. The view is a stellar cherry on top of what is already a remarkable space.
Both the living room and bedroom have floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors, which create a free-flowing space from indoors to outdoors.
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In front of the living room, you’ll find a pair of recliner lounge chairs.
In front of the bedroom, there’s a patio table and furniture more conducive to group conversation.
All of the seating faces the pool, which to be perfectly honest, was a bit of a novelty. It’s big enough to impress, but too small to be functional for anything more than a quick dip.
At the time of my visit, the water was still a bit chilly (although the air temperature and humidity were perfect), and I preferred spending my aquatic time lounging in the hotel’s main pool or swimming in the Aegean Sea.
Even so, I’d say the Private Pool Suite is certainly worth the suite-talk, for the extra space and decadence it affords.
The Bodrum EDITION – Loft Suite with Sea View
For my two-night stay at The Bodrum EDITION, I had noticed on the Marriott app that I had been proactively upgraded to the Loft Suite with Sea View on the day of my arrival.
While I was somewhat tempted to try suite-talking my way to a Private Pool Suite like the one Josh had, I eventually made my peace with trying out the Loft Suite as well to review another room type and give readers a broader sense of what to expect from the suites at this resort.
Arriving at The Bodrum EDITION at 3am after a nightmarish travel day with a series of cascading delays, I was relieved to finally be welcomed into my Loft Suite.
I was assigned Room 1011, situated on the ground floor of one of the individual blocks of guest rooms at the mid-level of the hillside.
Walking in, the space immediately feels akin to a private beach house with a consistent neutral colour palette. The suite feels like a luxurious hideaway, with soft and airy furnishings, warm woods, and flooring made of local stone.
The floor-to-ceiling windows are draped with large grey curtains, and large wood panelling is dotted all around, adding height and depth to various parts of the room.
In the centre of the living room, there is a cream sectional couch with a matching armchair and a small wooden coffee table over a plush carpet.
Behind the sectional, the back wall features wide decorative shelving with artifacts, games and reading materials nestled into each nook.
On the left-hand side of the room is a large wooden dining table with two live-edge benches and four individual chairs. Waiting on the table for our arrival was a welcome amenity, consisting of a bottle of Turkish rosé and some breadsticks.
The Loft Suite features a full kitchen, located immediately to the right as you enter the room. There is a stove, fridge, sink, plenty of cabinets and counter space for cooking, and a Nespresso.
The bedroom is in a separate room, accessible through a door at the back of the living space.
A wood-panelled back wall makes up the headboard of the plush king bed, flanked by two floating side tables.
To the right of the bed is an armchair and an ottoman, and at the foot of the bed, a sizeable desk sits against the wall with a flat-screen TV mounted on the wall above.
Stepping into the bathroom, your eyes are drawn to a stunning double vanity made of white and grey marble and a large mirror spanning the back wall.
The space features a large walk-in rain shower, with floors and walls stone-clad. Both the shower and toilet are enclosed with frosted glass, while to the right is a freestanding oversized bathtub.
Located near the kitchen is a secondary full bathroom. Although small, the bathroom features the same sleek design, and even has its own shower, toilet and vanity with a single sink.
The sea views from the Loft Suite are quite impressive, and you can enjoy them from the comfort of either the lounge chairs or the outdoor dining table.
I’d argue that the views are actually superior up here compared to the ground-level private pool deck over at Josh’s villa. 😉
Indeed, while the higher-tier Private Pool Suite has a bigger square footage and the attraction of the plunge pool, the Loft Suite is certainly no slouch either, combining modern and luxurious interiors with incredible views of the Aegean Sea.
The Bodrum EDITION – Breakfast
First things first: as per the rules of the Marriott Bonvoy program, the EDITION brand is not obligated to offer free breakfast as an elite benefit.
The Bodrum EDITION had long been known for offering free breakfast. I’m a bit unclear whether this was a feature of the room rate, or an unofficial elite benefit.
However, as of 2022, the hotel is no longer offering free breakfast on award bookings, whether or not you have elite status. Breakfast is still included for all guests who pay cash.
Visiting early in the season, I was able to politely but persistently sweet-talk the front desk into honouring the benefit that I expected at the time I made the booking. Going forward, though, if you have a stay booked on points, I would not expect free breakfast.
That being said, you absolutely don’t want to skip breakfast just because it isn’t included in your room rate. It might just be the best breakfast experience 25 euros can buy.
Breakfast starts with your arrival up the terraced stairs to the outdoor restaurant.
There’s a large indoor room, but travelling in low season, there was ample space outdoors for everyone.
The patio is set into the slope, a few levels up from the sea. There’s a mix of sunny and shaded seating suitable for large and small groups. The ambience is distinctly Mediterranean, with a clean, classy aesthetic, and picture-perfect vistas of the bay.
The meal begins with a 12-course traditional Turkish mezze spread. Yes, you read that right – it begins with 12 courses.
I sampled a few appetizers daily, before closing out my stay with the full menu once Ricky arrived to assist my gluttony.
On my first day, one of my servers proactively suggested a few safe options: baked goods, a cheese plate, fresh fruit, and olives. He was also very careful to check for allergies, and had the cheese plate prepared for me without walnuts.
Once I’d settled in, I continued to explore the full menu. I won’t go into detail on the whole smorgasbord, but suffice to say every dish was fantastic. Among the highlights, I particularly enjoyed kaymak (clotted cream) dipped in honeycomb, and lor cheese (curds) served both sweet and savoury.
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Then there are the mains. As the appetizers are where the breakfast experience shines, the main portions are on the small side. Luckily you can order as much as you want – Ricky and I often got two each.
Over the course of my stay I tried pretty much the entire menu. I can’t think of any weak points, save perhaps the Egg Benedicts, which wasn’t bad per se, just dull for a dish that is typically regarded as a standout. But I’d say that’s more a testament to the strength of the rest of the menu.
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My favourite was without question the menemen, a Turkish skillet primarily consisting of scrambled eggs and tomato. At my server’s suggestion on the first day, I added cheese and sucuk (Turkish sausage), a modification with took a great dish to the next level.
The pistachio pancakes were another highlight, delivered sitting in just the right amount of maple syrup.
There’s a good selection of drinks, including Turkish and Western coffee styles, Turkish and other tea, and fresh juices. I tried a good mix before settling into a routine of tasty Turkish traditions.
The menu also features four healthy juice blends and four non-alcoholic wake-up shots; branded with the elemental Earth, Air, Fire, and Water names.
I sampled them all during my stay, with a preference for the melon-based Air juice and ginger-forward Earth shot. The kefir-based Air shot was also a refreshing surprise.
Finally, most days there’s a station in the corner for fresh gözleme (stuffed flatbread). I didn’t even notice it until my last day, at which point I was beyond stuffed, but enjoyed one final taste of Turkish breakfast.
Service was stellar, with the staff working as a team to meet our every need. I got to know a few of them over the course of my stay. There was a bit of variance with their confidence (but not ability) to speak English, and a clear A-team over the weekend, but the calibre of Turkish hospitality never wavered.
Breakfast is served from 8am to 12pm – lazy resort hours. I’d recommend showing up by 11am, so you’ll have time to leisurely enjoy the feast and wash it down with some Turkish beverages.
Without a doubt, The Bodrum EDITION serves the best hotel breakfast I’ve ever had, not to mention one of the more unique menus I’ve enjoyed. Every day I found it hard to haul myself away from my perch overlooking the Mediterranean. I could happily eat this breakfast forever.
The Bodrum EDITION – Dining
The hotel’s “main” restaurant where breakfast is served is called Kitchen. For dinner, the space switches to a Turkish menu.
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You can access Kitchen by elevator, with a cool art gallery in the hallway.
Just below, you’ll find Brava, open for dinner with a Latin American menu. Brava was not yet operating for the season when I visited.
Down a few flights of cliffside stairs, you’ll come to Morena, the beach-level eats and drinks space spread across three terraces, with varied bar and restaurant seating.
Ricky and I tried the lahmacun (Turkish pizza) and fish tacos for lunch, both solid choices.
At night, Morena transforms into Inari, an extensive pop-up Japanese menu. I was a big fan of the toro truffle roll and the black tiger shrimp tempura, both recommended to me by my server.
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Fair warning: food and drinks at the resort are not cheap. That being said, for the dishes I ordered, the quality was fantastic. I did a mix of on-property fine dining and in-town Turkish fare, which I think was a reasonable way to balance my budget, my culinary experience, and my distribution of time on and off the property.
In-room dining is also available 24 hours a day.
The Bodrum EDITION – Pool & Beach
Attached to the beachside bar level of Morena, there’s a beach club. The space encompasses the sandy beach, plus an adjacent wooden deck partially encircling the bar, both filled with lounge chairs.
Through the late afternoon and evening, a DJ was playing tasteful electronic tunes, creating a pleasant vibe that was appropriate for the size and energy level of the thin crowds.
You can rent equipment for a few motorized and non-motorized watersports, but these seemed to be a bit stripped-down with tourist season not yet in full swing.
The pool is on the deck just above the beach, overlooking the sea. It’s suitable for swimming or frolicking, and has a seamless “infinity” transition on its horizon.
The pool and beach areas are neatly arranged with the cream-coloured recliner chairs and umbrellas. Around the pool, there are also hammocks.
The poolside deck is serviced by Morena, should you wish to indulge in any food or drinks.
There are private cabanas around the pool, and private overwater cabanas on the dock. Cabanas throughout the property are by paid rental only, while the other seating is free to use for hotel guests.
The Bodrum EDITION – Other Facilities
At sea level, built into the cliff behind the beach and beneath the pool, you’ll find the entrance to the gym. The facility contains a good mix of free weights, strength machines, and cardio machines. There’s a personal trainer on duty at all times.
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The gym also has a bouldering wall, a very unique feature.
A couple levels up, you’ll find the spa. There are entrances outdoors (by the breakfast restaurant) and indoors (by the elevator), both a bit hidden until you seek them out.
This cavernous facility is also tucked underground. The spa lobby is grand and serene, with gentle music and a relaxation space for before or after your treatment.
The spa offers an extensive menu of treatments, including familiar and traditional Turkish options.
Lastly, the property features a couple of other odds and ends. On one of the grassy terraces, there’s a ping-pong table.
Adjacent to Morena, there’s a shopping area called Caravana, showcasing local crafts and luxury goods.
You can also book private events at The Bodrum EDITION. There are large banquet and meeting rooms on the high terrace at the lobby level. As I was checking out, the staff were transforming Morena into a themed party for what I ascertained was a wedding reception.
The Bodrum EDITION is a phenomenal property in an exquisite location, with top-notch facilities and unbeatable service.
I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunity to book this sweet spot using Marriott Bonvoy points. In the future, as the Bonvoy program shifts to dynamic pricing, I suspect this somewhat-hidden gem will be ripe for another significant devaluation.
Especially with the free breakfast benefit being limited to cash bookings, I think it would be worth eyeing a cash booking here, if the price is right. Even if the outsized value dries up, the aspirational experience at The Bodrum EDITION is here to stay.
I would also encourage you to keep an eye on shoulder season, when rates will be more reasonable, suite availability will be more plentiful, and the weather and crowds will be perfectly suitable without getting out of hand.
I deeply enjoyed indulging in a corner of the Turkish coast that is perhaps less-known and less-developed, but no less divine, than its European counterparts, with an incognito reputation to match. Make no mistake, though – in spite of Turkey’s relative affordability overall, the on-property prices at The Bodrum EDITION are in line with the high standard offered.
Still, there’s something that just hits different about the Mediterranean lifestyle, cleansing on a routine of long sunny days, private steam rooms, and more types of olives and cheese than you knew existed. For the quality and price point of the Turkish experience, I could get used to this!