Secret Gardens

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There are secret gardens hidden throughout Taksim and Cihangir. They rarely advertise, and often require a special introduction by a friend. Some are situated on quiet residential streets, and others are surrounded by loud bars in the center of Istanbul’s nightlife district.

White Mill in Cihangir contains a large secret garden, which I discovered for the first time last night. Situated on a residential street, as you walk by you only notice a small gallery space on the ground floor. However, if you wander inside and up the stairs you find a fabulous restaurant that opens up to a beautiful garden. At night, you can observe friends celebrate special occasions and couples sharing intimate moments with one another. The garden is lit primarily by candles and lanterns. The branches of the tall trees planted throughout the garden serve as a natural ceiling, and the autumn breeze gently passes through the space.

The menu offers strawberry mojitos, wraps and excellent pasta. We gathered at White Mill last night to celebrate the birthday of my friend Neslihan, and shared an unforgettable evening with friends. It was full of laughter, travel stories and great food.

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