Holidays in Turkey are often associated with a lot of tourists, occupied by sun loungers and queuing for food at the buffet. This is what gives the country a special flavor. But for those who want to see Turkey in a new way and relax, as a representative of a fashionable crowd, there is an interesting place. So, you can see the “other” Turkey on the coast of Bodrum.
Alexander Kulish, agency Be.Spoken Communications, representative of the Maçakizi hotel in Russia, spoke about the chips that you need to go to Bodrum.
How Bodrum differs from other cities and why it is called the “other” Turkey
The whole coastline from Bodrum to Fethiye is called “Other Turkey”. This is the most beautiful coast in Turkey, not spoiled by mass development, the nature of which is protected by the state, and has the largest number of beaches that have received the Blue Flag ecological certification. “Another Turkey” it is called as opposed to “that very Turkey”, that is, mass tourism in Antalya. It is in the “Other Turkey” that the majority of luxury hotels are concentrated. What is now called “Another Turkey”, geographically coincides with the Blue Voyage yacht cruise route – under this name the writer Azra Erhat in 1957 published a book describing the life of the Turkish intellectual elite on the shores of the Aegean Sea and their walks on traditional sailing yachts – gulets. Bodrum is the largest and most international city on the coast, it can be considered the unofficial capital of the “Other Turkey”, as it is here that the largest number of luxury hotels, restaurants, boutiques and yacht marinas are located.
When and how Bodrum became the most fashionable city in Turkey
Ayla Emiroglu, the founder of the Maçakizi Hotel, a bohemian Istanbul girl with good international connections, who moved to Bodrum in 1977 and opened a restaurant and hotel there, put Bodrum on the international map. One of her friends was the founder of the American record label Atlantic Records, Turkish descent Ahmet Ertegun, who collaborated with stars of the first magnitude and was friends with Mick Jagger. Jagger came to Bodrum at the invitation of Ertegun, together they spent time with Aila (friends called her “The Queen of Spades” – which in Turkish sounds like Machakyzy, the hotel was named after her).
Then there was the word of mouth effect – international celebrities have been her guests for the past 40 years, including Kate Moss, Naomi Campbell, Marc Jacobs and many others. Later, serious international hotel projects appeared in Bodrum, which offered their clients a different concept of recreation than the Antalya “all inclusive”, their concept did not differ from luxury resorts in Europe. In recent years, the degree of luxury in Bodrum has increased also because yacht cruises start here not only along the Turkish coast, but also on the Greek islands. An entire industry has sprung up around yachts with luxury yacht clubs and restaurants, further enhancing the contrast between Bodrum and Antalya.
Who is suitable for a vacation in Bodrum
Holidays in Bodrum will suit absolutely everyone, there are hotels with different concepts. There are hotels for adults only, there are family hotels operating on the Ultra All Inclusive system, where alcoholic beverages are included. For example, Maçakizi is a hotel for adults where you can come with children, but children need to be entertained on their own, there is no children’s infrastructure here. Another feature of Bodrum that is worth considering is that there are almost no sandy beaches here. The classics of Bodrum bathing are beach clubs, platforms covered with a deck board, from which a comfortable descent into the sea is equipped.
How are covid restrictions affecting holidays in Turkey?
Since July 1, almost all antiquarian restrictions have been lifted in Turkey, except for the mask regime and social distancing. There is no curfew, restaurants, shops and spas are normal.
Features of the hotel Maçakizi
The most important thing is the atmosphere of a private club. Although technically not a private club that does not allow outsiders, it does not sell rooms on the major booking sites. To book a hotel, you need to know about it, go to the official website and book directly. Most often, guests come here on a recommendation. This ensures a homogeneous audience, models, celebrities, artists feel at ease here.
The second feature is the restaurant, which has been headed by the same chef Aret Sahakyan for 20 years. Without exaggeration, the restaurant is a legend in Bodrum, it is one of the 5 best restaurants in Turkey according to the guide Incili (the Turkish analogue of Michelin, where incognito inspectors evaluate restaurants annually). The restaurant is so popular that it serves about 900 people every day from morning to evening.
And finally, the third feature is the garden. All hotel rooms are densely intertwined with blooming bougainvillea, greenery and vibrant colors are everywhere. The proximity of the sea and the shade of the garden make a vacation in Bodrum very comfortable.