Çukurcuma is one of Istanbul’s most nostalgic, architecturally inspiring, charming neighborhoods, and it’s famous for its old, narrow streets and antique stores. During July, Çukurcuma will revive itself with the opening of Heirloom Istanbul, an eco-friendly, sustainability-focused, design-oriented guesthouse.
Suitable for both long-term and short-term stays, Heirloom Istanbul is an establishment built on the concepts of environmental, social, and cultural sustainability. Housed in a five-storied Ottoman-era building that was completed in 1902, the hotel’s design is inspired by the arts and crafts movement, which was led by William Morris, a 19th-century English artist and writer.
Owned by siblings Dilek Çamlı and Ender Sezgin, this chic, clean, down-to-earth hotel has aimed to bring together the best of Turkish craftsmanship and culture with modern, convenient amenities. Each floor features one room with a private bathroom, a kitchenette, and lounge area, except for the first floor where two rooms without lounge areas are situated. All rooms are decorated with beautiful, eco-friendly wallpaper by William Morris; handmade Turkish carpets from cities like Uşak and Kars; old light switches from Maraş and Uşak that many of us have never seen before; all-natural sofas, beds, and wardrobes made of walnut, pear, and chestnut trees; and custom-made oriental textiles. The bathrooms feature basins from hamams, tiles made of recycled glass, and upside down plants, which add that little extra touch. Each room creates harmony between elements of the past and the present, offering a cultured convenience to guests.
The honeymoon suite is located on the top floor. Although similar in design to all other rooms, it’s the only one with a furtive view of the Old City: behind a tall, round table and two bar stools awaits a small window, which, when opened, offers a glance of Istanbul’s beautiful skyline.
A separate café section with a charming, soothing garden is located next door, where guests can enjoy freshly-baked muffins, sandwiches, salads, and freshly-ground coffee made with traditional coffee machines. In this area, you’ll also notice the social responsible side of the owners. The shop section of the café sells local products from various parts of Turkey, such as organic bowls and cutting boards, handmade olive oil soaps by an 80-year-old lady, and olive oil brought from villages.
In a city where ecologically and socially responsible projects are beginning to flourish, Heirloom Istanbul serves as a monumental step in the right direction. Heirloom Istanbul; Adile Naşit Sokak No.6 Çukurcuma, Tel: (0212) 243 30 10