Private Sakip Sabanci Fine Arts Museum (What to See? Tickets)

The Sakip Sabanci Museum is a private fine arts museum that exhibits excellent collections from the Ottomans era and presents a museological environment to its visitors. The museum was opened in 2002 for the memory of the famous Turkish Businessman Sakip Sabanci (1933-2004), and housed in a beautiful white mansion located by the Bosphorus shore in Emirgan district.

The museum showcases exhibitions of Ottoman Calligraphic Art, religious and state documents, paintings of the Ottoman era, archaeological and stone works, collection of furniture and decorative arts.

About the Museum

Nestled in Emirgan, one of the oldest Bosphorus settlements in Istanbul, the Sabancı University Sakıp Sabancı Museum resides as a cultural gem. The museum’s main building, a mansion commissioned by the Egyptian Khedive Prince Mehmed Ali Hasan in 1925, was crafted by Italian architect Edoardo De Nari and served as a summer residence for various members of the Khedive family.

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Acquired by industrialist Hacı Ömer Sabancı in 1951, it became known as the ‘Equestrian Mansion’ adorned with remarkable horse sculptures. After Hacı Ömer Sabancı’s passing in 1966, the mansion transformed into the Atlı Köşk, housing Sakıp Sabancı’s extensive calligraphy and painting collection.

In 1998, the Sabancı family donated the mansion and its treasures to Sabancı University, officially opening as the Sakıp Sabancı Museum in 2002.

With subsequent expansions in 2005 and a modern gallery addition, the museum now stands as an international standard-bearer, offering a rich collection, diverse exhibitions, educational programs, and a vibrant cultural space.

What to See

Exterior

The white mansion is also called Atli Kosk (the Mansion with the Horse) and on the exterior here you’ll see a beautiful garden overlooking Boshorus and two exciting horse statues.

The Garden

Houses beautiful old fountains and several marble pieces from the Roman and Byzantium periods.

In collaboration with the Istanbul University Faculty of Forestry, Sakıp Sabancı Museum meticulously documents and showcases the extensive array of tree and plant species within its sprawling 18-decare garden, captivating gardening enthusiasts.

The garden boasts a diverse collection, featuring prominent species like coastal redwood, cork oak, Aleppo Pine, Alexandria Laurel, and Florida Cranberry. Notably, the presence of 150-year-old monumental trees adds a historical dimension.



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Housing 115 plant varieties sourced from the Far East, America, Australia, North Africa, and the Caucasus regions, including rare Turkish plants, the garden stands as a botanical haven.

With trees such as pine pine, cedar, and needlepoint gracing the landscape, a total of 452 tree-shaped plants contribute to the garden’s lush scenery. Visitors to Sakıp Sabancı Museum have the opportunity to explore this botanical treasure trove, with informational signs placed conveniently next to each plant for a comprehensive experience.

Horse Sculptures

One of the horse sculptures is located by the gate and is a work of the French sculptor dating back to 1864.

Second horse sculpture is located at the main entrance to the gardens and it is the cast of one of the four bronze horses taken from Sultanahmet Square, when it was looted by Crusaders in 1204 and removed to the Basilica of San Marco in Venice. It is a replica of the sculpture that Hacı Ömer Sabancı admired near Milan.

Interior

Sakıp Sabancı Museum showcases its extensive cultural and artistic heritage to society through its Book Arts and Calligraphy, Painting, Decorative Artifacts, Archaeological Artifacts Collections, and Archives. The museum is committed to meeting the contemporary standards of museology, ensuring a comprehensive and engaging presentation of its collections.

Visitors have the opportunity to explore the diverse range of artworks and artifacts, gaining insights into the cultural wealth preserved by the museum. You’ll see great collections inside the museum that include:

  • The Arts of the Book and Calligraphy (works by famous calligraphers, Korans and illuminated manuscripts)
  • Paintings Collection (early Turkish painting, the works of foreign artists from the later years of the Ottomans)
  • Collection of Furniture and Decorative Arts
  • Abidin Dino Archive (famous Turkish artist, consists of drawings, draft texts, studies for sculptures)
  • Emirgan Archive (consists of old photographs of Emirgan)

The Koran in miniature, that was written in 1635 to a tiny leather-bound and measuring 3,5×2,2 cm. is one of the most valuable exhibits of the museum.


Temporary Exhibitions

There are also temporary exhibitions and events held at the Sakip Sabanci Museum. See the current exhibitions from sakipsabancimuzesi.org/en/exhibitions

MSA Restaurant

Since its establishment in 2004, MSA’s Restaurant has stood as the culinary hub of The Culinary Arts Academy of Istanbul (MSA), Turkey’s premier culinary school. Renowned for providing professional training in various disciplines such as Culinary Arts, Professional Pastry and Bakery, Professional Food and Beverage Management, Professional Bartending and Mixology, and Professional Barista – all adhering to international standards.

The restaurant’s menu reflects a culinary journey inspired by global flavors, meticulously crafted and presented in the distinctive ambiance of the museum. Enriched by the interpretations of MSA chefs, the dining experience is further enhanced by the presence of aspiring chefs undergoing professional training at MSA, guided by experienced instructional chefs.

Museum Gift Shop

You can purchase; exhibition catalogues, art books, jewelry, stationery, mugs and fun toys

Visiting Tips

Why is Sakip Sabanci Museum famous?

Sakip Sabanci Museum is renowned for its rich collection of Turkish calligraphy and paintings. Housed in the historic Atlı Köşk (Horse Mansion) along the Bosphorus, the museum not only showcases the impressive art collection of the late Sakip Sabanci but also provides a glimpse into the opulent lifestyle of the Ottoman era. The museum’s unique location, diverse exhibitions, and commitment to promoting Turkish art and culture contribute to its fame as a cultural hub in Istanbul.

Is Sakip Sabanci Museum worth it?

For art enthusiasts and those interested in Turkish culture and history, Sakip Sabanci Museum is definitely worth a visit. The museum offers a captivating journey through Turkish artistic heritage, with a particular focus on calligraphy. The elegant mansion setting adds to the overall experience, making it a unique and enriching cultural excursion. The curated exhibitions, tranquil gardens, and the picturesque Bosphorus view from the mansion create a compelling environment that makes the visit worthwhile.

Is there a dress code for Sakip Sabanci Museum?

There is no strict dress code for Sakip Sabanci Museum, but it’s recommended to dress modestly and respectfully as a general courtesy, especially considering the cultural context. Comfortable and casual clothing is suitable for exploring the exhibits and the museum’s grounds.

How long do you spend at the Sakip Sabanci Museum?

The duration of your visit to Sakip Sabanci Museum depends on your level of interest in art and cultural history. On average, visitors spend around 1 to 2 hours exploring the museum’s various exhibits and enjoying the scenic surroundings. However, if you have a deep appreciation for Turkish calligraphy and art, you might find yourself immersed in the displays for a more extended period.

What time should I visit the Sakip Sabanci Museum?

The museum typically opens in the morning, and mornings are often less crowded, providing a more serene atmosphere to enjoy the exhibits. Aim for a visit in the late morning or early afternoon to make the most of your time.

How to get tickets for Sakip Sabanci Museum

Tickets for Sakip Sabanci Museum can be purchased at the museum’s entrance or online through their official website.

Can you enter the Sakip Sabanci Museum for free?

While some museums may offer free entry on specific days or times, Sakip Sabanci Museum typically requires an admission fee. Students, seniors, and certain groups may be eligible for discounted tickets. It’s advisable to check the museum’s official website or contact them directly for the most accurate and current pricing information.

Visiting Hours & Admissions

Opening Hours

The museum is open from 10:00 to 18:00 on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays.00

Free admission is available on Tuesdays between 10:00 and 18:00.

Ticket counters close 30 minutes before the museum closing time.

Please note that the ticket office closes at 17:30, and the last visitor entry is permitted until 17:30.

Closed on Mondays.

Ticket Price

Please double check hours and admissions from sakipsabancimuzesi.org

How to Get to Sakip Sabanci Museum

Location

You’ll find the Sakip Sabanci Museum just on the Bosphorus shore in the Emirgan district. See the location map.

Transportation

Public Bus

The most practical way to get to Sakip Sabanci Museum is via Municipal Public Bus. operating through the Bosphorus shores through Emirgan and Sariyer. Hop off at the Cinaralti bus stop. Some of the lines include;

* Check Municipal public bus routes and timetables from iett.istanbul (just type the location on the search bar and it will show the bus lines with routes and stops)

Public Ferry

Ferry services from Emirgan pier offer convenient transportation to various destinations along the Bosphorus. Passengers can enjoy trips to İstinye, Kanlıca, Kandilli, Anadoluhisarı, Bebek, Arnavutköy, and Çengelköy. Additionally, there are sea bus trips available from the İstinye pier to Beşiktaş and Kadıköy, providing diverse options for exploring different parts of Istanbul.

* Check Public ferry lines routes and timetables from en.sehirhatlari.istanbul

Hop On & Hop Off Bosphorus Tour

You can take the Dentur Avrasya boats departing from Kabatas and following the route Besiktas, Emirgan, Kucuksu Pavilion, Beylerbeyi Palace respectively and returning back to Kabatas, the starting point. You can join the tour by taking one way tickets (only from Emirgan, Beylerbeyi and Kucuksu docks) from the docks.

* Check timetables from denturavrasya.com

Contact Details

Address: Sakıp Sabancı Caddesi, 42 Emirgan, Istanbul
Tel: +90 212 277 22 00
Web: sakipsabancimuzesi.org/en


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