Istanbul is to get a new seven-star hotel, according to local media reports from Turkey.

Turkish newspaper Zaman reports that the luxury Shangri-La hotel group signed an agreement April 11 with local developer Tanr?verdi Holdings to build the hotel in Istanbul on the banks on the shore of Bosphorus Sea.

The hotel is to be built on the site of an old tobacco factory in the central Be?ikta? district, says Zaman.

The 200-room hotel is due to open in 2012, according to reports. It will have seven storeys both above and below sea level and will cost an estimated $250 million (€183 million) to construct.

Shangri-La owns 66 luxury hotels, the majority of them luxury establishments with five-star rankings. Although in theory any hotel can lay claim to a "seven star" ranking, the new property will need to be exceptionally impressive for the rating to be credible.

It is generally accepted that only three seven-star establishments have successfully managed to get the "rating" to stick - the Town House Galleria in Milan, the Burj Al Arab in Dubai and the Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi.