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Hotels, Restaurants, Nightlife
 
HOTELS

Code 993 City Code 12 GMT +5
Note: Although the larger hotels are starting to accept credit cards, you"re better off bringing enough American dollars to cover all your expenses.
You will see references to "hotel row" under a number of hotel entries listed below. This is not an official name but a name given by us. Approximately 20 hotels are situated next to each other in the Berzengy suburb each owned by a different ministry. Many have opened their doors & now accept foreign businessmen & tourists. It takes approximately 25 min to reach these hotels from the city centre & 40 min from the airport.

 
  
 


Sheraton Grand Turkmen Hotel
Five-star
7 Gerogly Str 744000
Tel: 51 05 55
96 rooms, 24 suites, 2 restaurants
City Center




Reliable international hotel in downtown Ashgabat and, under American management. The Grand Turkmen offers a relatively sophisticated setting (despite the over-enthusiastic use of a rather disgusting green), international standards of service, excellent bars & elegant restaurants serving well-prepared international specialities. There is also casino. Guest rooms have individually controlled air-conditioning & heating units, IDD telephone, radio/taped music, private bathroom, hairdryer, satellite TV & minibar. Popular with visiting business people, & this is where BA staff stay when in town. Meeting rooms, business centre, interpreting service. There is also a conference-hall, which has two balconies, with beautiful mountainous panorama of Kopet-Dag and city view. To run conference and seminar visitors of hotels can use technical equipment such as computers, fax machines, printers, copying machines, and also secretarial services.The location of Sheraton is exclusively comfortable. There are City"s Administration (Hyakimlik), Central Bank, Parliament of Country (Mejlis), ministries, museums and theatres, and best restaurants, casino, shops and markets within the 1 km radius.Outdoor pool, sundeck terrace, floodlit tennis courts. Barber, beauty parlour.

 
  
 


Four Points Ak Altyn Plaza Hotel
Four-star.
141 Makhtumkuli Ave
Tel: 36 37 00
136 rooms, 18 suites, 2 restaurants
Near the City Center



One of Ashgabat"s best known hotels located in a quiet residential area in downtown Ashgabat, opposite the Circus building & adjacent to Pobedy Park. Only 7km from the airport, it can be reached in 20 minutes. Guest rooms include individually controlled air-conditioning & heating units, IDD telephones, remote-control TV & satellite, minibar, separate bathroom & shower, hairdryer. The Continental restaurant features a buffet at lunch with an international а la carte in the evening. Although under American management. Payment in dollars.
Meetings & conference facilities for up to 350, business centre. Health & fitness centre, sauna, Turkish bath, indoor & outdoor pools, massage. Casino. Parking.Hotel has luggage store room, medical cabinet, valet services, secretary, translator (interpreter) and housekeeper.

 
  
 


Hotel Nissa
Four-star.
18b Atabaeva Str
Tel: 42 10 25 (26)
123 rooms, 12 suites, 3 apartments, 1 restaurant
City center



Third of the "big three" hotels in Ashgabat, the Nissa probably has the edge these days, as reflected in healthy occupancy rates & the busy bar & restaurant.Entertainment on the weekends. Bang in the city centre, the hotel has a pleasant decor of light marble & the guest rooms are well equipped with individually controlled air-conditioning & heating units, private bathrooms, 24-hour room service & remote-controlled TV. The Italian restaurant is one of the best eateries in the city & the comfy bar an excellent spot for a relaxed business get-together.Meeting rooms & banqueting hall, business centre. Health club, sauna gym, Turkish bath, indoor & outdoor pools, solarium.


Hotel Ahal
Four-star
Berzengy
Tel: 51 87 38, 51 87 37 Fax: 51 01 92
16 rooms, 5 apartments, 1 restaurant
Outside



Located in "hotel row" this four-star hotel has an Italian restaurant, bar, 24-hour room service, laundry service, solarium, tennis court, bowling, sauna, gym & indoor swimming pool & massage. Guest rooms have individually controlled air-conditioning & heating units, colour TV & private bathroom. Next-door & under the same management is the Hotel Azatlyk. The two hotels share the same restaurant & pool.VISA accepted with a 4 percent service fee. e-mail adress: nissa@cat.glasnet.ru. Next-door & under the same management is the Hotel Azatlyk (Independent), tel: 51 81 54, 51 81 55. Fax: 52 00 01

 
  
 


Gara Altyn
Three-star
Berzengy
Tel: 51 88 90, 51 81 63 Fax: 51 88 92
6 rooms, 10 suites, 1 apartment, 1 restaurant
Outside



Another "hotel row" establishment. Guest rooms have individually controlled air-conditioning & heating units, & colour TV. The restaurant serves an international а la carte menu. No credit cards.Health club with sauna, floodlit tennis court, outdoor pool with bar.



 
  
 


Hotel Nebitchi
Four-star
Berzengy
Tel: 51 87 98 51 02 06 Fax: 51 89 64
14 rooms, 4 suites, 2 apartment, 1 restaurant
Outside




Smartish hotel on "hotel row" with an outdoor swimming pool, pool bar, sauna, & floodlit tennis courts. It has a restaurant & a bar. Guest rooms have individually controlled air-conditioning & heating units.VISA accepted with a 4 percent service fee.


 
  
 


Hotel Turkmenistan
Three-star hotel with a bar & grocery store.
19 Bitarap Turkmenistan Str
Tel: 35 06 30 Fax: 35 05 33
48 rooms, 5 suites, 1 restaurant
City Center




Situated within walking distance of the downtown area the Turkmenistan has recently been refurbished, though it remains more functional than glam. Guest rooms have individually controlled air-conditioning & heating units, private bathroom & colour TV. Conference room. Bowling, sauna.



Arkach
Berzengy
Tel: 51 81 26
11 rooms, 1 restaurant
Outside



Small, friendly hotel on "hotel row". Guest rooms have a separate bedroom & sitting area & some have kitchens, large private bathrooms with bath & shower, remote-controlled TV, individually controlled air-conditioning & heating units. The restaurant serves decent food. A massage service is available. The front desk changes US dollars into Manats.


Country Code 993 City Code 12 GMT +5
Note:Telephone numbers have not been given, as they frequently change & many restaurants do not speak English. You should book restaurants through your hotel.

RESTAURANTS

Hotel Nissa Restaurant
18b Atabaeva St
City Center


Smart, highly-regarded Italian with a pleasant atmosphere & some very decent cooking from the charming Gianluigi Nava. Dishes of Parma ham, marinated mushrooms or penne with shrimps & lobster may not surprise, but you can ignore the menu: Gianluigi believes in spontaneity & is always ready to dream up a bespoke meal on the spot. Most of the produce by freezer truck from Italy, the salads come from the hotel"s own greenhouse. There"s an Indian chef, too, who is also expert in Thai & Chinese cooking (book ahead). Good all-Italian wine list & grappas.


Caspian Restaurant
Sheraton Grand Turkmen Hotel, 7 Gerogly St
City Center


Smart & newly-refurbished hotel eatery boasts a striking design of dark blues & light greens with a hefty dollop of rural chic (horse carriage, hay, barrels etc). Tables are well-spaced with columns in between, making this a good spot for discreet business powwows. Food is in the usual Turkish/international categories.Restaurant offer wide choice of European and Turkmen national cuisine. Chef des Cuisinies Gian Raffaele Sabbatucci from Bella Roma. Every Friday 'Night at the Opera', famous opera singers. Enjoy a four Course Italian Gala Menu Every Saturday the best classical music in town. You will be spoiled by a four Course French Gala Menu. Every Sunday Sheraton's family branch


Continental Restaurant
Four Points Ak Altyn Plaza Hotel, 141 Makhtumkuli Ave
Near the City Center


Smart location for good continental & Asian cuisine served by a sizeable army of friendly staff. At lunchtime, daylight streams in through the domed skylight & a lively business crowd turns up for a very good hot & cold buffet. Evenings are more sedate with an а la carte offering of steak, pasta & chicken, with the usual international favourites well-represented. Chamber & jazz groups strike up at the weekend. Also good for breakfast &, come summer, for poolside dining. Visa accepted.



Exclusive
5 Chary Nury St
City Center


This smart Iranian-run eatery opened on New Year"s Eve & has rapidly become one of the city"s top spots for business dining. The central location helps, but it"s the decent cooking of a long & varied menu that particularly impresses. There are plenty of the Turkish & European standards that you expect of an Ashgabat menu, but the imaginative will opt for the Iranian specials: ghorme sabzi, a spicy stew of fresh green vegetables, say, or a polov (related to the Indian pilaff) made with sour cherries, saffron, spices & meat. Good bar, & live music & dancing in the evening.



Mizan
Hotel Mizan, Berzengy
Outside


Big, stylish, restaurant in the European mould boasts well spaced, screened-off tables & a large private room for discreet meetings. Done out in yellows, golds & greens, with natural light during the day & smart lighting at night, the only downer is a karaoke stage - check it"s not in action on the day you visit. The food is the usual Turko-European mixture, ranging from a chicken schnitzel to a fish shashlik made with the ubiquitous sturgeon. Nice flowers. A 15 min drive from town centre.



Ahal Hotel
Berzengy
Outside


One of the better eateries in Ashgabat, done out in typical Italian decor & run, like the Nissa, by the experienced Gianluigi Nava. A wide selection of pasta, meat, chicken & seafood dishes (much of it using imported ingredients) consistently impresses, the only drawback being the far from central location. There"s a two-lane bowling alley in basement (although it"s not always working). Visa accepted.



Four Points Ak Altyn Plaza Hotel Coffee Shop,
141 Makhtumkuli Ave
Near the City Center


American dishes. Good selection of sandwiches & light fare. On the weekdays there is also a buffet of Turkish salads, meats & desserts.



MSM
Trade Center, 40-A Turkmenbashi St
City Center


Italian cuisine & modern setting at moderate prices. No credit cards accepted.



Altyn Diamond Restaurant
Hotel Turkmenistan, 19 Neutral Turkmenistan St
City Center

Round-the-clock restaurant serving large portions of American & Middle Eastern dishes (kebabs, steaks, chicken, omelettes etc) in a pleasant setting. Live band in the evening. Inexpensive but loud. No CCs.




Cesme
1 Karrieva (formerly Lokhuti) St
Near the center


Despite the far-from-central & far-from-pleasant neighbourhood (near the railway station), Cesme is fast becoming one of Ashgabat"s favourite restaurants. Set in a vaulted cellar, the muted lighting, Byzantine decoration & small capacity help to conjure an intimate atmosphere. The short menu is largely Turkish, with plenty of kebabs & grills, but it is very well cooked & served by attentive, efficient staff. Much used for relaxed business dining by European ex-pats & business folk. Gets busy in the evening.



Dostluk Restaurant
142 Makhtumkuli Ave
Near the center


Enjoyable Turkish barbecue serves excellent kebabs & the like from a grill in the middle of the restaurant. Attractive decor, occasional live music, pool table. No CCs.



Florida Restaurant
1st & 2nd floor, Florida complex, 4 Gerogly St
City Center


Two stage restaurant, buffet & bar. On the first floor is a very popular bar-cum-buffet, with plenty of comfy seats for gawping at the TV (cartoons mostly!). Upstairs is a smart, if unremarkable restaurant, decorated in the usual plush colours & serving a menu of Turkish & quasi-European standards. Large menu of chicken, lamb, fish and beef dishes.Service can be sluggish even at lunch, when it"s fairly empty. There is a veranda in summer & live music some evenings. No CCs. (across from the Sheraton Grand Turkmen Hotel)


Florida British Pub
4 Gerogly St
City Center


Ground floor pub done out in dark wooden hues & decorated with a large collection of European football scarves. Serves American & English favourites of the hamburger, sandwich, fish & chips variety as well some decent German beers on tap. Quick service. 'Happy Hour' gives half price food and drinks. A popular gathering spot for Western visitors & ex-pats, both at mealtimes & during "happy hour" on Fridays (1230-1400; 1830-1930). Occasional live bands in the evening. Patio in summer. No CCs.




Mizan
Hotel Mizan, Berzengy
Outside


Big, stylish, restaurant in the European mould boasts well spaced, screened-off tables & a large private room for discreet meetings. Done out in yellows, golds & greens, with natural light during the day & smart lighting at night, the only downer is a karaoke stage a?" check it"s not in action on the day you visit. The food is the usual Turko-European mixture, ranging from a chicken schnitzel to a fish shashlik made with the ubiquitous sturgeon. Nice flowers. A 15 min drive from town centre.



Ahal Hotel
Berzengy
Outside


One of the better eateries in Ashgabat, done out in typical Italian decor & run, like the Nissa, by the experienced Gianluigi Nava. A wide selection of pasta, meat, chicken & seafood dishes (much of it using imported ingredients) consistently impresses, the only drawback being the far from central location. There"s a two-lane bowling alley in basement (although it"s not always working). Visa accepted.


Ankara Restaurant
Gagarin St,
Road to the airport


Turkish dishes. Typical Turkish kebabs and salads in a rustic surrounding. No credit cards or dollars accepted, only manats. Inexpensive. Live music some evenings.


Nissa Troya
54 Alisher Navoi St,
City Center


Enjoy quiet restaurant. You"ll love the relaxed atmosphere & moderate prices, as well as the good menu, which includes delicious pizzas, soups and desserts. Cold and hot snacks made of vegetables and meat, sweet dishes, fruits, confectionery. No credit cards accepted. On the evening strings groups perform.


Pizza Haus
72 A Makhtumkuli Ave
Tel: 39 56 00
City Center


Friendly, domesticly & original decor. Pizza Haus offers contemporary european cuisine and genuine hospitality in the heart of the capital, on the corner Supermarket (Uniwermag), National Theatre Drama, Russian Bank & American Embassy. No credit cards accepted.

NIGHTLIFE

Discos generally open around 2300 & start warming up at about midnight. An admission charge is generally levied. There"s a nightly disco at Florida Restaurant which also has a garden area in-use during the summer. Harry"s Bar, in the basement of Mizan Center in Berzengy, is a loud, style disco bar, while the members-only Nirvana at the Nissa is altogether smarter. Other dancing venues include: ABC Restaurant (Berzengy) with a disco/bar at the rear, adjoining the swimming pool (emptied in winter); Watan Cinema, which features a new disco/bar in a cinema pit; & Teremoc bar/disco, Ashgabat"s latest "in" place.