29 August 2014
It is impossible to resist the hard blue of the Aegean Sea, especially when it laps against the chiselled creeks of the Turkish peninsula of Bodrum. This holiday destination alternates between a ‘did you see me?’ vibe and more discrete style, Bodrum boasts a number of exclusive addresses. Now keep this well-kept secret to yourself!
On approaching the Göltürkbükü Bay, the Maçakızı boutique hotel is barely visible: lost in vegetation, almost buried beneath flamboyant bougainvillea, the hotel’s white villas are pervaded by intermittent rays of sunshine. Its glass pavilions are entirely inundated by nature, which they reflect. Unchanged, this elegant Turkish address commandeered by Sahir Erozan has been an example of living art since the 1970s, from the time when he mother not only welcomed guests, but also cooked for them.
As a reference to bohemian-chic, the property is split into private suites, arranged like little traditional houses (prioritising extreme comfort, plus pieces of art by Haluk Akakçe), and public spaces intricately organised by architects including Ahmet Atalaş, designer of the glass box that acts as an enormous, sprawling living-room, and Murat Tabanlıoğlu who created magnificent contemporary hammam in glass and white marble flecked with black. Various pieces and spaces liven-up the passageways, with kilims, designer furniture, books and numerous glass sculptures designed by Sema Topaloğlu, the perfect accompaniments for either a midsummer day or a quiet afternoon by the fire.
In summertime, however, when Naomi Campbell or Kate Moss is passing through, the Maçakızı is a rival in discretion, offering each guest his or her own personal space. Simultaneously on a hillside and by the water, elegant pontoons and secluded teak cabins line the grounds…and invite you to plunge in headfirst, before breaking for a cocktail, prepared carefully by expert barman Luca Amadio! Life is a party at Maçakızı.
Kesire Mevkii Narçiçeği Sk. 48400 Göltürkbükü / Near Bodrum / TURKEY
Upon arrival, you believe you are facing a seaside mirage. Drawn by Antonio Citterio, this luxury establishment stretches towards the horizon and blurs boundaries, making it impossible to tell which deep corner of dream world you have just landed in. If the landscaped gardens and refined spatial architecture are reminiscent of South Africa, these incomparable blue lagoons evoke the Turks and Caicos Islands, whilst its serenity and contemplative nature hold notes of Asia. And yet, the luxury hotel is equally Mediterranean in spirit: with its dry earth and the incessant cry of seagulls, ancient olive trees and deep blue creeks, you need look no further in your pursuit of happiness!
Intricately arranged, the restaurants give an international dimension to the resort, with concepts varying from a reinterpreted Japanese style, to a beachside restaurant and onto sophisticated Italian…or the group’s unmissable MO bar, where midnight parties unfold over several glasses of vintage whiskey. Linking itself with its surroundings, like a projector screen, the elaborate decoration frames the view, playing on an outdoor-indoor porosity, comprising of understated décor where elegant furnishings, matching colour schemes and inventive lighting create a resolutely contemporary ambiance. A lesson in style.
Cennet Koyu Çomça Mevkii Göltürkbükü, Bodrum
+90 252 311 18 88
Located on a protected beach at the bottom of a valley, Juju Club is a summertime event in a league of its own. On the posters, international DJs promise a series of electric nights: Stéphane Pompougnac (Costes) or Claude Challe (Buddha Bar) take up residency here, right across from the Mediterranean: an elegant open-air bar on a teak pontoon that serves as a nightclub, perfect for any chic castaways. And with good reason; behind it hides Machine Babylon, one of the most influential event-management groups (and experts in music) in the country!
By day, we oscillate between the garden and lawn scattered with outdoor furniture, with parasols planted in the sand and waterfront pontoons for those seeking the shade or the sun. Children will learn to walk on water on floats/inflatables pulled by a speedboat. A true slice of summer.
Juju Club @ Mandarin Oriental