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Memduh Pasha Yalı

Arnavutköy Bebek Caddesi, Arnavutköy, Istanbul

Identifiable by its oxblood-red paintwork, this is one of the last traditional Ottoman yalıs on the European shore, uncluttered with Western columns and pediments. Hugged by wisteria, it still has its secret walled garden on the hill behind it, but it is shamefully neglected. The columns you can glimpse in the woods above, though only from a boat, belong to the American Robert College, founded in 1863. It was first used as an Armenian bank, and in 1915 was acquired by the Cretan businessman Ali Vafa.


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Issue 59, June 2019 Behind Closed Doors
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