Photographer's Note

iek Pasajı (literally Flower Passage), originally called the Cit de Pra, is a famous historic passage (galleria or arcade) on İstiklal Avenue in the Beyoğlu (Pera) district of Istanbul. It connects İstiklal Avenue with Sahne Street.

The site of iek Pasajı was originally occupied by the Naum Theatre, which was burned during the Fire of Pera in 1870. The theatre was frequently visited by Sultans Abdlaziz and Abdlhamid II, and hosted Giuseppe Verdi's play Il Trovatore before the opera houses of Paris.

After the fire of 1870, the theatre was purchased by the local Greek banker Hristaki Zoğrafos Efendi, and Italian architect Zanno designed the current building, which was called Cit de Pra or Hristaki Pasajı in its early years. Yorgo'nun Meyhanesi (Yorgo's Winehouse) was the first winehouse to be opened in the passage. In 1908 the Ottoman Grand Vizier Sait Paşa purchased the building, and it became known as the Sait Paşa Passage.

Following the Russian Revolution of 1917, many impoverished noble Russian women, including a Baroness, sold flowers here. By the 1940s the building was mostly occupied by flower shops, hence the present Turkish name iek Pasajı (Flower Passage).

After the restoration of the building in 1988, it was reopened as a galleria of pubs and restaurants.

The most recent restoration was made in December 2005.

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Photo Information
  • Copyright: Erjk HIZIROS (rnchzr) Silver Star Critiquer [C: 17 W: 0 N: 1] (92)
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  • Date Taken: 2008-00-00
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  • Date Submitted: 2008-08-20 22:22
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