Hg2 : The Hedonist

A Hedonist’s guide to…

Istanbul

5 Kat
Tucked away on the fifth floor and roof-terrace near Taksim Square, this slightly-out-of-the-way bar is a real find. The plush and eccentric furnishings make 5 Kat perfect for drinks all year round.
Alti Café
This lovely cafe-cum-boutique is the perfect place to start a day of shopping around the antique shops of Cihangir and Faik Pasa Yokusu. Try the delicious Turkish breakfast in beautiful garden.
Çukurcuma Hamam
A go-to hammam for the gay crowd in Istanbul.
Cuppa
Healthy juice shop and cafe to leave you glowing...
Dogztar
It's laid back with a down and friendly rock vibe reminiscent of our school years. If experimental music is your thing, then this is quite a discovery.
Dulcinea
Sleek, cool decor attracts sleek cool customers to this popular bar just off the Taksim end of Istiklal Caddesi. To keep with the stylish set, head over to nearby fusion-restaurant Changa for dinner.
Galata House
A former prison Galata House may not have the happiest history, but homely furniture and some comfort food from the Crimea have long dispelled any negative vibes.
Gizil Bahçe
Ostensibly no different from the traditional restaurants and bars serried along Nevizarde Sokak, Gizil Bahçe is quite a different proposition. A deliberately low-key, stylish bar attracting a cool youngish crowd.
Istanbul Modern
Housed in a former warehouse in Karaköy, Istanbul Modern is one of the few places in the city to see Turkey's more recent artistic achievements.
Kahve Dunyasi
If the Modern's cafe doesn't appeal, pop into the charming bustling Kahve Dunyasi for a chocolate fix.
Kino Garden
This tiny, trendy Asmalimescit bar attracts a different cool crowd to the glamorati that frequent Leb-i-Derya and 360o - Kino is popular with younger creative types with slightly less cash.
NuBlu East
A more sophisticated music policy - think groove reggae and disco rather than cheesy euro-pop - sets NuBlue East apart from its Kurucesme neighbours.
Pera Museum
Classic and contemporary art gallery that puts on some amazing exhibitions...
Refik
To dine at Refik is to tap into the traditional tavern scene. Join Istanbul's political intellectuals for some top quality meze and put the world to rights (if you're Turkish is up to scratch).
Sakip Sabanci Museum
Past temporary shows have included Dali and Picasso, this Istanbul gallery is fast becoming an institution...
Sakirin Mosque
Beautiful contemporary mosque, designed by an avant-garde female architect...
SuAda Swimming
Su Ada (it translates as ‘water island’) is a swish open-air swimming and general loafing joint housed on a pontoon floating in the Bosphorus.     
The House Apart
Chic and cheap serviced apartments dotted around the city, the brain child of a slick chain of Istanbul cafes.
Tokyo
Located just off Beyoglu's buzzing thoroughfare Istiklal Caddesi, the smart contemporary Tokyo is perfect for a quick sushi lunch. Pop in here before taking on the antiques shops of nearby Faik.
Urban
Not quite as 'urban' in design as the name might imply, this charming Parisian-style bar is perfect for an early evening drink.
Yakup 2
One of the most authentic of Asmalimescit's meyhanes, Yakup 2 has a traditional earthly feel reminiscent of days gone by. Nightclub Babylon is just round the corner to dance off the meze.

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