Welcome to the Sark Kahvesi café in Istanbul, designed and operated by Timothy Oulton.
Located in Istanbul's Grand Bazaar, the Sark Kahvesi cafe is part of Timothy Oulton’s larger concept of hospitality offerings connected across the globe including The Chelsea Pig in London and The Bearded Rose in Barbados.
A Heady Blend of East & West
For millennia, Istanbul has been a crossroad of East and West, an exotic blend of trade and culture sprawled along the turquoise waters of the Bosporus.
At the heart of this ancient city one of the oldest markets on Earth, the Grand Bazaar, a labyrinth of vaulted arcades bustling with every imaginable emporium for over 600 years. Deep in the maze of stone paved alleys you’ll find Sark Kahvesi, one of just a handful of traditional coffee houses still operating within the old Bazaar.
Revitalised & Reimagined by Timothy Oulton
A hub of daily activity and popular among locals and tourists the café closed indefinitely in 2019. This created the opportunity for Tim Oulton’s love affair with Turkey and all the riches of its history to become part of his vision to present truly unique hospitality experiences in the most ico
The new Sark Kahvesi has been carefully reimagined by Timothy Oulton Studio in keeping with the storied history of an iconic building. Decades of neglect have been stripped back to expose the raw masonry of its wonderfully irregular spaces that have grown over the centuries. Above the full restoration of soaring vaults and skylights, all of differing sinuous shapes and sizes, creates a cathedral of shadow and light.
With seating for more than 50 people, the 60m2 café opens to the central arcade with bi-fold windows. At the main entrance a bespoke marble and glass apothecary counter showcases the abundance of Turkish delicacies, all freshly prepared onsite. Behind, a full height timber display cabinet laden with jars and spices and to the right a dedicated ice cream counter which also opens directly to the arcade.
Timothy Oulton Studio team took inspiration from both the local vernacular and core inspirations of the Timothy Oulton brand, juxtaposing authentic materials and textures. Utilising locally sourced reclaimed oak and tumbled limestone flooring, the main dining area is fitted with bespoke printed velvet banquets, antique Thonet chairs and Verde marble and brass tables. Two large Olive trees in black glazed ceramic pots provide a dappled canopy above other hand carved wooden tables encircled by leather stools.
At the end of the main vault an assembly of 300 vintage silver teapots blends the long histories of tea drinking in both Turkey and England.
Designed by Timothy Oulton Studio
The Sark Khavesi was conceptualised and designed by Timothy Oulton’s in house turnkey bespoke design practice, Timothy Oulton Studio, who work on in house projects for Timothy Oulton and also for external clients, across hospitality, retail commercial and construction projects.