Dolmabahce Palace

Located along the coast of the Bosphorus in Beşiktaş, 300 yards from the Beşiktaş ferry-boat quay, this palace is the grandest imperial Ottoman residence. It was constructed by the Armenian architects Karabet and Nikogos Balyan for Sultan Abdülmecid (1839-61) who, preferring a more modern residence, decided to move out of the Topkapi Palace. The construction of this sumptuous palace was finished in 1853, and the royal family abandoned the imperial residence of Topkapi which had served as a home for the Ottoman household for almost four centuries. Dolmabahçe was the imperial residence of all subsequent Ottoman Sultans, with the exception of Abdülhamid II (1876-1909) who preferred living in the more secluded Yıldız Palace. An apartment within it served as Atatürk's residence in Istanbul and he died there during his last visit to Istanbul on 10 November 1938.