The Trans Asia Express

Continue reading [split] Passengers aboard the weekly 10.35am Ankara to Tehran Trans Asia Express begin that lesson as they board. Now Turkey’s diplomatic capital, Ankara was a dusty rail town before the country’s inception in 1923. The German train pioneers, who had laid their tracks across Anatolia a decade before, decided to centre the rail […]

The Championship

Continue reading Taste obviously forms a large part of the scoring criteria; in just two sips, the judges evaluate the coffee on its body, taste balance and ‘synergy’. Of the championship’s 19-page document of rules and regulations – the most critical for competitors is perhaps rule 2.1.2.B, that ‘the signature cezve/ibrik must be drinkable’. This […]

Han of the Moment

Continue reading ‘Good architecture is all about the “Third Way”, the slow way,’ explains Tümertekin. We are discussing his B2 House, located south of Istanbul, which won the Aga Khan prize in 2004. This über-modern stone and glass villa overlooks Turkey’s timeless Aegean Sea. Yet the stark design gels completely with the surrounding settlement, which […]

Office Space

Continue reading [split] In the early 2000s, with business expanding rapidly, Selman and Süha concluded that Bilsar, then based in the shopping district of Nişsantasşı, needed to move shop. ‘We had offices in a couple of buildings, which made it difficult to manage the company,’ says Süha who, at 48, has now been with the […]

Keeping His Word

Continue reading [split] Before the interview, Basar warned me about Googling him, ‘because the web is made up of outmoded information about people, but presents it as though it’s all in the current moment. Google is reliable about things that are no longer true.’ But still, I couldn’t resist. Within this search engine e-world he […]

Exploding the Rules

[split] Bodrum has long held the title of being one of the premier holiday destinations in Turkey, for both Turks and tourists from overseas. The Aegean port city’s natural environment, with its forests of trees, flowers and rolling hills, is a welcome relief from the intense urban sprawl of Istanbul and Ankara. The fact that  building […]

Seeing SALT

Continue reading [split] At the time of writing, Pippo Ciorra, senior curator at Rome’s National Museum of the 21st Century Arts (MAXXI), is due to discuss contemporary architecture at SALT’s walk-in cinema. No event better sums up the institution’s declared motive that looks to ‘move away from one way communication.’ SALT may be a non-profit institution, […]

Emerging From the Shadows

[split] The change begins with the central district of Kizilay. Home to dozens of similar restaurants and cafés, the neighbourhood is being recreated with newly renovated shopping centres that played host to the Ankara Shopping Festival for the first time this year. Ataturk Square has been redesigned with gardens and flowers; plastic dinosaurs placed around […]