A Detailed Guide on the Architectural Styles of Turkey
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Architectural Styles of Turkey

Created : 21 Dec 2022
Architectural Styles of Turkey

By Justin Mays:

Turkey enjoys a unique place in the world, positioned between two continents and possessing a rich history spanning centuries. One can see these influences of east-meets-west in the local architecture. The evolution of Turkish society, and the dynamism of its history, led to various changes in Turkish architecture. Today’s blog post will discuss Turkey's architectural styles throughout different eras and their evolution. Stay tuned.

Early Turkish Architecture

The early Turks in Central Asia lived a nomadic lifestyle in tents that would eventually become a part of Turkish architecture. However, the arrival of the Selcuk Turks in Iran led them to adopt the local styles and combine them with the components of their own design. This led them to create structures based on the amalgamation of both styles. 

Medreses built during the reign of Alparslan best display this architectural style. Simplicity, grace, and a combination of stone and brick details characterize the designs of these Seljuk-era buildings. The use of decorative tiles, eyvans, domes and ornate muqarnas are also important features of the architecture of this era. Additionally, wood and marble were used to decorate the buildings.

The Çifte Minarelli Medres exhibit the design elements of early Turkish Architecture. 

Ottoman Architecture

Ottoman Architecture 

This was the period in time when the Ottoman Era’s expansion was in full swing, and the Turkish architectural styles shifted dramatically. We see many examples of Ottoman architecture in the mosque and palaces dotted throughout Turkey as they exist today. These structures boasted much more complex designs, incorporating architectural influences from the Middle East and the Mediterranean. In fact, Byzantine influences were also incorporated widely into the Ottoman structures.

All the mosques of this era show these varied design influences, such as pointed towers and domes on top of the structures. Certain office buildings of this era even have European influences since they boast spires on top. 

The inside of the Ottoman structures, such as mosques and other buildings, included tall ceilings and spacious interiors and numerous windows to light up the space. The Mihrab was a common element in the Ottoman buildings, so people knew where to face when praying.

Mimar Sinan served as the imperial architect during Sultan Suleiman's reign and is known for his architectural marvels, such as the Suleymaniye Mosque in Istanbul, which he built for Sultan Suleyman and also designed over 300 structures during his lifetime.

Architectural Styles of Turkey

Later Modern Influences

By the 1950s, more attention was paid to practicality in architecture rather than style. Buildings were constructed to serve their purpose, so the designs were plain, and functionality was essential. 

Architects were needed to construct administration buildings, so many western architects and planners were brought in, such as from France, Switzerland, Germany, etc. They also carried out the planning and development of Ankara, which was Turkey's new capital. In this era, we see the Bauhaus and Art Deco architectural styles. 

The 1980s saw a boom in the building and construction industry, speeding up the construction process. 

The present-day contemporary architectural designs stray from the classic style and involve modern construction techniques for aesthetics and a robust structure. 

Properties in Turkey

The best local architects design modern properties in Turkey, which boast multiple stories while meeting the highest safety standards. The most environmentally friendly materials are used in their construction and are built to be fully earthquake-resistant. 

Furthermore, the affordable prices and improved quality of the local properties attract foreigners to invest in Turkish real estate.  

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