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Sisli Ataturk Evi. Photo: panoramio/Murat Erdoğan - www.…

Sisli district has a population of 315,000 and is known as a residential area for the middle and upper middle class. It is famous for its fashion stores and shopping malls, such as the Cevahir Mall (see photo below), considered by some as the biggest shopping mall in Europe.

Like all Istanbul districts Sisli is also made up of different neighbourhoods. The neighbourhood of Nisantasi includes Abdi Ipekci Street, one of Turkey's most expensive streets in terms of shop rents. Tesvikiye, on the other hand, has been home to many writers, politicians and prominent business families since the 19th century. The writer Orhan Pamuk was raised in Sisli and still lives here for part of the year.

Sisli is also the only district of Istanbul which still has a sizeable number of non-Muslim residents. It is home to non-Muslim houses of worship, cemeteries and schools. These include the Bulgarian St. Ivan Church, the Beth Israel Synagogue, the Armenian Pangalti School and Church, the French Catholic Cemetery, the Protestant Cemetery, the Armenian, Greek and Jewish cemeteries (in one complex), the Greek Ferikoy Elementary School, the Georgian Catholic Church, the Armenian-Catholic Bomonti School, the St. Michel French High School, the St. Esprit Catholic Church. 

The Armenian-Turkish weekly Agos and the Jewish weekly Shalom are also located here, as is the Surp Agop Armenian Hospital. The Agos office is on the main Halaskargazi Street, within walking distance of the Beth Israel Synagoge, targeted by Al-Qaida in November 2003. Hrant Dink, the editor of Agos, was shot in front of the paper’s office on 19 January 2007.

October 2008

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