There is so so much going on in Istanbul! Well, our lovely city is a major metropolitan and cosmopolitan city that can rival many cities in Europe and the USA!
Of course, I'm not preparing a magazine like I used to, so my info on Istanbul in What's "UP" is based on personal experiences and press releases that I continue to get from some PR firms... I will continue to share anything noteworthy to both residents and visitors - but with my own twist on the news - whether I received it from outside sources or whether I personally find the topic newsworthy!
This is Part 3 in an ongoing series... so here goes!
Compared to just a few years ago, the number of hotels that have opened and continue to open in all parts of the city is definitely on the rise. You can find anything from the 5 star deluxe to the boutique with a dusting of business and 3-4 star hotels thrown in for good measure....
|Avantgarde Hotel (picture from their website)|
I attended a party thrown by a dear friend of mine in December (I will be writing about the reason for the party at a later date as I'm still waiting for some new developments before I write about it) and really liked the hotel and had a chance to visit one of its suites too. I found the staff very friendly and efficient.
Deluxe room (photo from Avantgarde Hotel website)
So, if you plan on staying in the new part of town by the business districts, you might want to consider the Avantgarde Hotel...
- The opening rate went up from 2.5 TL to 2.7 TL
- Additonal charge for each kilometer therafter is now 1.73 TL versus 1.6 TL
- The waiting period charge which goes into effect after 5 minutes is 0.27 TL per/minute versus 0.25 TL/minute.
So, make sure the taximeter is turned on when you get in the cab and you don't need to tip, however, it's best to round off the fare to the nearest TL.
The Çırağan Palace has been home to many prominent exhibitions ever since it opened on the mezzanine level of the palace many years ago. They organize a new exhibit almost every month except during the summer.
|Ismail Acar painting|
Until January 29, you can view the films of the the Cinéma Verité Pioneers D.A. Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus, renowned for their documentary films.
A total of 11 short and long documentary films are on the roster and from this point on (the events started on January 6), 3 to 5 films will be screened.
|Kings of Pastry|
While at the Pera Museum, make sure to visit their permanent exhibit as well as any temporary exhibit that might be on display. For a quick snack, you can stop by the Pera Cafe (prices modest) or do some shopping at the Pera Museum Shop!
|From the Nile to the Bosphorus Exhibit|
|Vogue (picture from the Istanbul Doors Group website)|
Last year the IDG joined forces with prominent UK chef Tom Aikens and are now partners with Aikens notable restaurants in London. Now, Chef Aikens has added some of his touches to Vogue.. and new items have been added to the menu. Among them are Duck Soup with chestnuts, Risotto with mint pesto & goat cheese and Rack of Lamb. I haven't had a chance to go recently and must to try some of these new goodies!
I live in a nice sized apartment, but unfortunately my kitchen is tiny and because I have limited counter space, I find it easier to order out or just stick to eating "basic" foods (cheese... bread... salads...). But, this can get boring too... so I am a major fan of .... www.yemeksepeti.com !!
|Eggplant Parmiagana Sandwich (Brooklyn Pizza)|
Although, this is not a new item... one day I also decided to order a salad. I'm usually not happy with the salads offered at most eateriesand I'm very picky about it! A salad is JUST not a salad and I usually find the ingredients lacking in quality and the dressings pretty mediocre. However, Brooklyn Pizza surprised me once again.
|Caesar Salad from Brooklyn Pizza|
Brooklyn Pizza is located in Ulus, so if you live in the area, you can order from "yemeksepeti" or visit their pizza shop on Barış Sokak (I never went myself as I can order online).
|1st place - "Seafood Dolma" (Ayşe Gengönül)|
|2nd place - Squash with yogurt and walnuts" (Gökçe Karadeniz)|
3rd place - "Hibeş" (Sibel Taşkan)
On the subject of the Laledan...from January 14 to March 31, a special set "Winter" menu at 145 TL/person is available which includes a selection of 14 wines from 7 countries (Argentine, Australia, France, South Africa, Spain, Italy and Chile) available by the glass or bottle.
I think it's very rare or nearly impossible to find a woman who doesn't like jewelry! Sure, we all have different tastes... some like gold, while others prefer silver (like me!), some like the "real" stuff (very expensive), while others are happy as long as the jewelry was produced with quality products.
|Swarovski - Kanyon Shopping Mall|
Of course, besides jewelry, they have other items...
Well.. Alessi has now opened a branch in Istanbul and is located on Nispetiye Caddesi No. 4, Apt. No. 8 in Akatlar (between Levent and Etiler).
I don't know about you, but I can't wait to go and see all that they have to offer. I have no idea what the prices are, but I'm sure I'll be able to find something in my price range! Also, they also have a bridal registry service (www.alessi.com)!
When I attended Swarovski's cocktail party in December, we were served two types of prosecco...(counterpart to champagne and sparkling wine)...
The first was your classic glass of prosecco.. but the other was pepared with Chambord...
|Cellular phone cover stand - Metrocity|