Today is one of those days that you just want to curl up on the couch with a good book with a crackling fire and a glass of wine!!! Finally, the winter season has arrived in Istanbul! We have been soooo fortunate with mild weather and very little rain so far this year that we got spoiled! Just yesterday it was a gorgeous day and I went out with just a light jacket. On the other hand, it hasn't stopped raining yet today (and it is now 2:45pm) and it doesn't look like it will let up at all, so I cancelled all my afternoon errands and instead have just been reading newspapers and finally decided to do some writing, however, I will not be able to finish this post today as I am going to go out to dinner, so it won't be a totally "lost" day! The place I'm going to is a newcomer to Istanbul and just opened two weeks ago: the US based PF Chang's... I do enjoy Chinese food and will be sharing notes from my evening with you in the next few days. (I started writing this post on Thursday, November 22nd and unfortunately haven't had a chance to finish it until today - Saturday, Nov. 24th, but interestingly enough... it's another wet and cold day and the stuff I wrote about above ... wine, fireplace stands! But, since I don't have a fireplace... I made a great homemade soup to warm up while writing this post - I'll have some wine later on after I finish up!)
The topic of this post is a smosgarbord of information on some of the stuff going on around the city... let it be exhibitions, wining & dining, etc... it is a very "short" list because Istanbul is so dynamic and constantly "lively and alive", but some of the things I'm posting might be alternatives that you might not have considered, especially the info on activities at some hotels around town. Most people don't usually think of going to hotels for dinner, etc. but I think that's a mistake! I personally have always been a fan of dropping by some of the hotel properties around town because they do offer alternatives that can be interesting from time to time...
So, let's begin!
There is absolutely no end to the number of art exhibits that you can attend in Istanbul - from the small and avantgarde gallery to the more traditional "museum" style events!
For example... I'm a major fan of the impressionist painters.. Van Gogh, Monet, Manet.. etc and have been fortunate to have visited some exhibitions of these prominent painters in New York City and Paris....
Now... and until January 6th... you have the opportunity to visit one of these painters exhibits right here in Istanbul! Claude Monet's exhibit titled "Monet's Garden" is on display at the Sakıp Sabancı Museum which is located along the gorgeous Bosphorus waterfront in Emirgan.
|Claude Monet - Water Lilies|
|Claude Monet - "Blue Lilies"|
Monet's exhibit is open Tuesday-Sunday until 8:00pm.
One of the other great things about going to exhibits at the Sakıp Sabancı Museum is that besides great artists works for you to enjoy, visitors also have a chance to have a wonderful meal at one of the better restaurants in Istanbul: muzedechanga, which is the "sister" of Changa Restaurant located in Taksim. Not only does the venue offer a breathtaking view of the Bosporus with indoor and outdoor seating areas, their menu is always intriguing, ever-changing according to season and most importantly, the food is delicious! I downloaded the following photograph from their website as I didn't have any recent pictures that I took myself...
|muzedechanga (photo from their website)|
|muzedechanga (photo from their website)|
Besides muzedechanga's normal list of goodies to choose from, the team has prepared a special set dinner menu, served on Tuesday and Thursday evenings which they've called "If Monet Could Cook" and includes actual dishes served at Monet's table at his home in Giverny while others are dishes inspired by his paintings. I'm not going to be lazy and will list the items on the menu and recommend everyone to go before the exhibit ends(of course including myself hopefully!)
|Fikret Otyam painting|
Currently and until January 6th, the Pera Museum is hosting two exhibits: "Golden Children: 16th-19th Century European Portraits" and "Flashback: Yannick Vu & Ben Jakober"
|Yannick Yu & Ben Jakober|
|Four Seasons Bosphorus "Enhar"|
|Four Seasons Bosphorus "Ahmer"|
|Four Seasons Bosphorus - "cucumber" & rosemary infused martini|
|Aqua Restaurant - "Tonnarelli cacio e pepe"|
|Spagetti Alla Chitarra|
|Four Seasons Sultanahmet "Wine and Cheese"|
|Kanyon Shopping Mall/view of Carluccio's|
|Me and Arda Türkmen|
As you can see from the list posted in front of the restaurant, they have added grill selections, "home cooked" meals, cold olive oil dishes buffet and soup and the choices change daily. One thing that hasn't changed is that alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are discounted 25% between noon and 5:00pm!
|Leblon - "cold olive oil dish" selections "of the day"|
The next post will be about P.F. Chang's, a popular US based chinese restaurant and the newest "newcomer" to Istanbul! I might prepare it today or tomorrow...not sure yet as it is getting on in the day and I'm a little tired!