Name of Hamam: Şifa Sultan Turkish Bath
Date Built: 1283
Traditional style: Yes
Date of Visit: September 26, 2019
Location: Taşcami Uzunharmanlar Street, Konya, right across from the Sahip Ata Medrese Museum Entrance.
Price (in Lira): 30/15/15 (hamam entry/scrub/massage)
Tip Expected: If yes there was no pressure to do so.
Drinks: Yes Free: No (but surprisingly cheap)
There is a section for both Men and Women.
Reviewed for: Men
Final Score: 42/50
While Şifa Sultan Hamamı is a bit plain and lacking in the grandness of some other historic bath houses, it is still a great place in all the ways that matter most for anyone looking for a quality authentic experience. Şifa Sultan Hamamı was fairly busy when we were there, this is always a good sign. A busy Turkish Bath has money for maintenance, is kept good and hot, and tends to be much cleaner. The downside to this is that the scrub and massage was a bit rushed, likely because we were the last customers of the day after the crowd had already gone through. Based on the signage at the entrance the staff here are well used to foriegn tourists but have managed to not become pushy and demanding regarding tips and extra services. All in all this is a great place to have a good quality and authentic Turkish Bath experince for a fair price.
Score Breakdown (All scores out of 5)
Length of stay: 4.5
Note: Length of stay was fine. No one rushed us and we had plenty of time to enjoy the sauna before the scrub.
Change room: 4
Note: Change rooms were nice, clean, and simple with good locks. In this case three of us had a personal room.
Common room: 4
Note: The common room has retained a sense of historic authenticity and is actually usable as a place to relax and cool down after Hamam experience. While simple in design it’s a charming place.
Hamam Features: 3.5
Note: The traditional elements are here though there are no extras. The tıraşlık, or shaving booth, is an authentic touch that most tourists aren’t likely to make use of.
Hamam esthetics: 3.5
Note: Şifa Sultan Turkish Bath is significantly older than the average hamam. The majority of historic Turkish Baths that you can visit today were built during the 1500’s when the Ottoman Empire was one of the richest in the world and Turkish Bath culture was extravagant. Şifa Sultan Turkish Bath pre-dates this by a few centuries and its size and simplicity reflects this. While it’s smaller than many and without any ornamentation, it’s still pretty and very authentic. The shape of the main domes and arched-side rooms reflect the pre-Ottoman, Seljuk builders with their tall pointed arches.
Note: Despite being quite old, Şifa Sultan Turkish Bath is kept quite clean. Only the faintest spots of mildew can be seen on the white domes. The surfaces are kept clean and washed regularly.
Note: Hot water, cold water, warm rooms, hot rooms, and a marble slab all kept to a perfect temperature.
Note: Those responsible have done a great job keeping Şifa Sultan Turkish Bath free of all but the faintest unpleasant smells.
Quality of Scrub/Massage: 3.5
Note: The massage and scrub were good and vigorous but rather rushed. The lack of thoroughness could be due to the fact that we were there close to closing and a small crowd had gone through right before us.
Note: The staff at Şifa Sultan Turkish Bath were great. They were friendly and fun even if a little deaf. The deafness just made conversation that much more entertaining.
Have any tips or info to add? Spot any mistakes? We’d love to hear about it.