The Cicek passage in Istanbul, is one of the most famous landmarks… A place that all tourists should visit and all locals should always honor!
Walking down famous Istiklal Street, admiring all the wonderful buildings of another era… you will come across to a beautiful neoclassical building, now called Çiçek Pasaj! A historic jewellery, located at the center of Istanbul, connecting Istiklal with Sahne Street!
Çiçek Pasaj is a well known covered arcade, which now hosts Turkish taverns! A lively place, with tasteful food, good raki and wandering singers playing traditional Turkish songs, helping you indulge in the Turkish culture… One of the few places in Istanbul, where you can feel part of the history while entertaining!
This unique place, wasn’t always a Meyhane! For many years originally, was occupied as a theater, frequently visited by Turkish Sultans! After the great fire of 1870, a local Greek banker Hristakis Zografos, bought the theater and designed the current building. They named it Cite de Pera and very quick became the most glamorous meeting point in the city! Unfortunately in the late 1980s, almost 100 years after its initial construction, part of Cite de Pera collapsed and the building closed!
When the tourism in Turkey started to flourish, the building was again restored and reopened, as a more upscale eating and drinking place! But after the Russian Revolution, changed again its character, while many former noble Russian women, started to sell flowers there. By 1940s, the building was known for its big variety of flowers and this is why took its current name… Çiçek Pasaj, which in Turkish litellary mean s ‘Flower Passage’
One or two decades later, the Pasaj had become a place full of workmen, eating cheap food, drinking a lot of beers and carouse the nights! It continued in the same vein, until some parts of the building collapsed again, in the late 1970s
Once more in 1988 was reconstructed, but this time a glass canopy was placed, in order to protect the pedestrians from the bad weather. Wooden tables and benches were placed instead of the makeshift barrels and stools. This time, the beautiful building opened its gates as a galleria of pubs and restaurants…
From that time till now, few changes have occuried, with the most recent restoration to be made in December 2005. The ceiling is very high giving you the feeling of freedom although the arcade is covered. There are also huge pots hanging from the ceiling, in which there are placed colored flowers, not only to beautify the place but also to recall the time in which flowers were selling!
Looking up, you will see enormous black and white portraits, of women and men of that time! The courtyard is lined with traditional Turkish tavernas offering good food (and seafood), served by friendly and helpful staff in pleasant surroundings. One more great choice to spend an unforgettabel night in Istanbul…
Çiçek Pasaj hosts 9 lovely restaurants
Ikinci Bahar Restaurant Palmiye Restaurant
Sevic Restaurant Stop Restaurant
Kime Ne Restaurant Huzur Restaurant
Mahzen Restaurant Ceneviz Meyhanesi
~~~We would love to know everything about your experience in Çiçek Pasaj! Please take a moment to leave a comment about this historic place! ~~~
Near by, is also located Orhan Pamuk’s Museum of Innocence. So before Çiçek Pasaj you can visit this unique Museum!