Dolmabahce Palace built in 19th century is one of the most glamorous palaces in the world. Dolmabahçe (Filled-in Garden) comes from the Turkish dolma meaning “filled” and bahçe meaning “garden. The Palace was ordered by the Empire’s 31st Sultan, Abdul Mecit and built between the years 1843 and 1856. This palace is filled with every luxury imaginable. The construction cost five million Ottoman mecidiye gold coins, 35 tons of gold, the equivalent of ca. $1.5 billion in today’s (2013) values. It was the administrative center of the late Ottoman Empire with the last of Ottoman Sultans was residing there. After the foundation of the Turkish Republic in Ankara, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk transferred all government functions to the youthful capital but on his visits to Istanbul Ataturk occupied only a small room at Dolmabahce Palace as his own. He stayed, welcomed his foreign guests and made a practical center for national, historical and language congress and for international conferences.

Turkey. 2014