Beautiful Stories About Old Beyoğlu

Pera Palace Hotel, which has hosted many important local and foreign names, especially Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, from past to present, admirable with its magnificent architecture; We think that the importance of Istanbul’s Beyoğlu district, or Pera, as it used to be known, in Turkish literature, which includes historical structures such as Galata Tower, Galata Turkish Bath, and Kamondo Stairs. In their works, our writers and poets referred to the unique beauties and people of Beyoğlu, as well as sometimes criticized Beyoğlu according to the conditions of that period. How would you like to take a brief look at the beautiful stories of our esteemed writers about the old Beyoğlu?

Bilge Karasu – Lağımlaranası or Beyoğlu

The texts that Bilge Karasu entrusted to his close friend Füsun Akatlı before he died were later combined and published as a novel under the name of Lağımlaranası or Beyoğlu. Bilge Karasu carries traces of his childhood and family in these texts. “I stuck my head outside, smelled the air. The air would be foul again in under half an hour. I was suffocating. It was the smell of Istanbul, not Istanbul, the smell of Beyoğlu. I pressed the button for arrogant generalizations. “This is how the old cities used to smell,” he would say in his work and he would mention Beyoğlu often.

Ziya Osman Saba – Kış Gezintisi

Ziya Osman Saba’s story, Kış Gezintisi(Winter Trip), is included in his book, Changing Istanbul, which was published two years after his death. Ziya Osman Saba in all his stories; mentions his love for Istanbul, childhood memories, and longing. Saba often talks about Beyoğlu in his story, Kış Gezintisi. He expresses his longing in many sentences such as “…first of all, it was a country of cinemas and a winter trip meant Beyoğlu.”

Sait Faik Abasıyanık – Tüneldeki Çocuk

Sait Faik Abasıyanık always chooses the characters in his stories from people in real life and talks about the negativities, troubles, and joys of these characters. His story Tüneldeki Çocuk(The Boy in the Tunnel) is one of them. Sait Faik Abasıyanık tells the story of a poor boy’s first ride in the tunnel going between Karaköy to Beyoğlu, and the happiness he experienced, that he probably came across while on a trip to Beyoğlu, in his work called Tüneldeki Çocuk.

Demir Özlü – A Lunch Time in Beyoğlu

A Lunch Time in Beyoğlu is featured in Demir Özlü’s short story book The Magic of Istanbul, which consists of 15 stories. In his story, Demir Özlü tells the ordinary course of life at any noon in Beyoğlu with his own unique descriptions.

Naim Tirali – Büyük Cadde

He talks about Istiklal Street in Büyük Cadde(Grand Street), one of the stories in Naim Tirali’s work, which consists of six short stories called Yirmi Beş Kuruşa Amerika(Twenty Five Pennies For America). He skillfully depicts the cinemas and people of the 1940s on Istiklal Street with unique expressions.

Tezer Özlü – Cafe Boulevard

Tezer Özlü, one of our successful story writers, expresses what she wants to tell in her story Cafe Boulevard by putting the place in the foreground rather than people with her realistic narration. She evaluates people from different walks of life and mentions the effect of the current conditions of the period on people in her story. The venue is Beyoğlu. “People are here willingly, not necessarily, in masses. No one complains about this crowd. This is no port, airport, or station crowd. There is nothing expected. The purpose is entertainment, people watching, looking and attracting gazes.” When we look at the lines, it is not difficult to say that Beyoğlu still preserves its essence.

Nazlı Eray – Monsieur Hristo

Nazlı Eray often uses fantastic elements and an entertaining language in her works. She adds extraordinary elements to real people or events. The author presents an old doorman whom she knew in her childhood as a pigeon in her story. The pigeon, which she calls Monsieur Hristo, lives in the skies of Beyoğlu.

Discover Beyoğlu, the Subject of Stories

Beyoğlu, which has been the subject of many novels, stories, and even songs, is one of the most important districts of Istanbul that should be visited. In addition to its historical beauty, the fact that it has become a center of culture and entertainment are just a few of the factors that make it a center of culture and entertainment. If you happen to pass by this uniquely beautiful place, you can stay at the pearl of Beyoğlu, the historical Pera Palace Hotel, take a walk in the streets of Cihangir and watch the fascinating beauty of Istanbul at the Galata Tower.


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