As the old European quarters flourished in their seclusion, Sultan Abdülmecid had a dream – and expanded to the east
Dolmabahçe and Nişantaşi A fairytale waterside palace, shopping heaven for label queens and the Linden Pavilion, a rural Baroque pearl in Arcadia
Beşiktaş and Ortaköy A trio of founding fathers, mettlesome football fans, polemic in the park, Yildiz Palace, and Ortaköy, the grand finale
For more than two centuries the Ottomans were obsessed by the elegance of the tulip and grew over 3,000 varieties, each characterised by almond-shaped petals drawn out into an exaggerated taper.
With its hundreds of different shapes, pasta is today one of the most widely consumed and enjoyed of all the staples
Across the Golden Horn from the Topkapı and the bazaars is the European City, where fortunes have for centuries been made and lost.
Patricia Daunt extols the palatial embassiess that adorn the heights of old Pera. Photographs by Brian McKee
The Sakip Sabanci Museum has just celebrated 600 years of diplomatic relations between Poland and Turkey. Jason Goodwin finds deep-rooted affinities between the two countries
John Carswell introduces the mesmerising entries in this year’s Ancient and Modern Prize for original research
With 19th-century Istanbul in thrall to the music of Italy, an extraordinary theatre was born, the creation of one rather ‘odd character’. Emre Aracı tells a tale of comedy and tragedy
Black musicians, White Russian princesses, Turkish flappers… During the Jazz Age, Beyoğlu was a ferment of modernity and decadence. By Thomas Roueché
For 700 years, the European quarter was home to Genoese, Jews, Greeks and many others. Norman Stone charts the district’s changing fortunes
Maureen Freely recalls the artists and writers who enlivened her childhood with their flamboyant bravado and unspoken sadness
In the very thick of the city, with its fret and fuss, belching traffic and urban sprawl, lies a glade scented with linden blossoms. Here the young Sultan Abdülmecid built a jewel of a palace, grand but tiny, which is still a green oasis and place of escape. By Berrin Torolsan
Until the 20th century, visitors would sail serenely into Istanbul to disembark opposite the Topkapi. After this spectacular start, reality would set in. By David Barchard