I recently had the opportunity to visit a potential client in Istanbul. The company has built a magnificent new city within the city – a vibrant mix of retail, office and residential units in the heart of Istanbul called Kanyon. I had no preconceptions of what Istanbul would be like though I sort of thought it would be like Barcelona or Prague. How wrong could I be! The first thing to hit you about Istanbul is how utterly different it is. Firstly the scale of the place completely blows you away. Istanbul is a massive, unknowable megalopolis of maybe 14 million people, maybe more, all of them moving at all times, frenetic.
This is a city on the edge but one of amazing energy. The evidence of economic boom is inescapable as new buildings, and luxury hotels, spring up everywhere – adding to the chaotic feel of the place. But Istanbul is also an intimate city as seen in the beautiful narrow streets filled with restaurants and bars in the French area of Taxim, the secluded hidden restaurants along the Bosporus and the relaxed shopping area of Nişantaşi.
My hosts were very generous with their time and I packed a lot in to my 48 hours in the city. The highlight was undoubtedly the charming shopping area of Nişantaşi and dinner at Tuus, the ultra-trendy restaurant in the newly opened Sofa Hotel.
Another notable excursion was to Adress Istanbul, three floors of the best in international interiors, situated next to Cevahir Hotel and Akın Plaza. Great design brands and a great place to stop for lunch.
I left Istanbul tired, yet inspired and full of wonder for a city that although only 3.5 hours from London remains largely off the radar of the city break traveller. I have to admit I am hooked and look forward to further exploring this great city.
<a href= “http://www.jerde.com/projects/project.php?id=68”>www.jerde.com/projects/project.php?id=68
<a href= “http://www.thesofahotel.com/”>www.thesofahotel.com
Adress Istanbul (0212) 320 62 62
In the heart of Soho, Flat White offers a nice relaxing retreat from the nearby bustling Piccadilly Circus. In the middle of Berwick Street Market sits Flat White coffee shop offering great coffee, hot chocolate, and service. After going in on a dreary rainy day the relaxing atmosphere can’t help but cheer you up.
With its warm brown, red and orange tones combined with a paradise mural in the back, Flat White is an excellent place to pop in on a chilly day with a delicious cup of…your choice. With a charming design of a leaf or swirls on top of your drink you almost don’t want to drink it, but after one sip there’s no stopping you. The staff at Flat White are just as great as the stock of beans they carry. Friendly and helpful, you can’t beat this new treasure for a nice soothing break from the hectic schedule of everyday life.
17 Berwick Street, Soho, W1F 0PT
Circo Ripopolo is a wonderful Italian circus performance with two men using miniature papier-mâché figurines in a mini circus tent. There are miniature figurine-people sitting beside the audience as well as a trapeze act, lion taming, acrobatics, human cannonball etc. The two Italians who are running the 12 minute show give out teeny tiny bags of popcorn to the audience (with only one piece of popcorn in them), and operate the lights and music and generally are hilarious. Only about 10 people can fit into the mini circus tent and the Italians don’t speak a word of English, but somehow you get what they are saying anyway. The whole experience is wonderfully entertaining. – an enchanting experience we came across on the South Bank in London. I’d love to have them back in London as part of a launch party. I have attached a photo of the ticket from the event – even the tickets are given out in a charming way through the ticket stand
Locally sourced and seasonal products are something we have been tracking at Camron for a few years now. They are overtaking organic products in popularity as people strive for a more honest relationship with the food they consume. Canteen is the epitome of this movement – providing good food, nationally sourced, skilfully prepared and reasonably priced. Good produce provenance is key to Canteen’s success and we love it!
The menu at Canteen is as frill-free as its minimalist decor. The menu choices are all curiously nostalgic: where else nowadays would you see ‘soup, bread & butter’ or ‘macaroni cheese’ on a menu? The emphasis is on the quality of the sourcing & cooking; all dishes are cooked to order and the menu changes seasonally to accommodate the best and freshest national produce.
Canteen is perfect for breakfast or a lazy Sunday lunch with your friends and family. Check it out before it becomes even more ridiculously popular.
Canteen: 2 Crispin Place, Spitalfields, E1 6DW
In 1994, former fashion entrepreneur Murray Moss opened Moss in a small former gallery space in Soho. The store quickly became internationally known for its product selection and presentation, with clients ranging from highly informed design professionals, to celebrities, students, and tourists with maps. The famous Soho destination exhibits work from masters and daring designers, often bridging disciplines by fusing craft and production, art and design, outsider and mainstream, designer and producer.
146 Greene Street
New York, NY 10012